On Monday, the Obama Administration announced that for the second time in a year, employers with 50 to 99 employees will have extra time — until January 1, 2016 — before they are required to offer health insurance to almost all their full-time workers. Initially, the employer mandate was to take effect on January 1, 2014, but last summer, the Obama Administration delayed that deadline until January 1, 2015 for all employers.
This new extension, announced by the Treasury Department, applies only to employers with 50 to 99 employees. The Treasury Department did announce some changes for larger employers as well. Employers with 100 or more employees are will be required to offer suitable coverage to 70 percent of employees by January 1, 2015, rather than 95 percent which is what the ACA previously required.
With this change, the employer mandate (often called the “shared responsibility” mandate), now applies as follows:
- Employers with less than 50 employees: These employers are not required to provide coverage or complete any tax returns under the ACA.
- Employers with 50 to 99 employees:, These employers will need to report to the IRS in 2015 about the insurance offered to their full-time employees, but will not be subject to a mandate until January 1, 2016.
- Employers with 100 or more employees: As a result of these changes, these larger employers will only need to provide 70 percent of full-time employees with coverage as of January 1, 2015, but that percentage will rise to 95 percent on January 1, 2016.