It’s the law. The Affordable Care Act requires the large majority of U.S. citizens and legal residents to have health insurance (or pay a penalty if they don’t). Hopefully, your benefit eligible employees have joined your employer sponsored health plan or have obtained coverage through their spouse. But how are you helping your part-time employees or those who are not eligible for health insurance with their coverage? Although it’s not required for you to do so, your part-timers may feel more supported if you do!
Check out our list of important information for employees who aren’t eligible for your company benefits to help them purchase affordable health coverage for the upcoming year!
Starting November 15, 2014 through February 15, 2015, individuals seeking health insurance can take advantage of the annual open enrollment period in the Public Marketplace. In addition to purchasing Public Marketplace coverage, individuals will also have the opportunity to purchase a private health plan outside of the Public Marketplace. Both of these are opportunities for those employees who were not eligible for your company sponsored benefits, or those that chose not to take your coverage, to buy a new policy or plan.
WHO THIS EFFECTS
Your part-time or ineligible employees will want to pay attention to the upcoming open enrollment period of the Marketplace and private health plans, particularly if they did not enroll in your group health plan during the last enrollment period, or want to change to a Marketplace or private health plan. Additionally, employees who experienced a qualifying event but did not enroll in time after their qualifying event took place would also be able to take advantage of these plan alternatives.
If an employee fails to have any medical coverage, they may pay a penalty.
In 2015, individuals without health insurance will be fined either $325 per person per household (up to $975 per household) OR 2% of their yearly household income, whichever is greater.
WHAT HAPPENS IF EMPLOYEES DO NOT ENROLL IN COVERAGE
Make sure your employees don’t miss the deadline! If for some reason they do, they may have to wait until the following annual open enrollment period. If an employee has a qualifying event (i.e. birth or adoption of a child, marriage, moving permanently to another state, etc.) then they may be able to obtain health insurance outside of the annual open enrollment period, so long as they do so in the time allotted after their qualifying event takes place.
GOVERNMENT SPONSORED PROGRAMS
Should any of your employees become eligible for government-sponsored programs such as Tricare, Medicaid, the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) or Indian Health Service, they may enroll in a government sponsored health plan at the time they become eligible, which could occur at any time during the year.
HOW TO PURCHASE
Marsh & McLennan Agency's team of Insurance Advocates can assist your employees in navigating their individual coverage needs and options, and address their insurance questions. You can direct them to our licensed and professional team by encouraging them to call at us 855.298.6588 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Get the tools and resources you need to help your employees navigate the confusing world of Health Care Reform by downloading our Communicating Health Care Reform webinar.
Please note: The above should not be construed as legal or tax advice. Please consult with your attorney or tax advisor for actual legal or tax advice.