This article covers significant developments in late 2011 and 2012 employee benefits, including employment taxes, executive compensation, health and welfare benefits, including employment rate taxes, and qualified plans. This article focuses on guidance released and changes to the rules for group health plans as a result of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA).
The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is commonly called Obamacare or the federal health care law, which is a United States federal statute signed into law by President Barack Obama on March 23, 2010. PPACA is aimed primarily at decreasing the number of uninsured Americans and reducing the overall costs of health care. It provides a number of mechanisms including mandates, subsidies, and tax credits to employers and individuals in order to increase the coverage rate. Additional reforms are aimed at improving healthcare outcomes and streamlining the delivery of health care. PPACA requires insurance companies to cover all applicants and offer the same rates regardless of pre-existing conditions or gender. The Congressional Budget Office projected that PPACA will lower both future deficits and Medicare spending.
The article talks about the “Minimum Value” of Employer Group Health Plans. It states that beginning in 2014, large employers (with 50 or more full time employees) that offer health coverage will be liable for a penalty equal to $250 per month for each full time employee who elects coverage through an exchange and receives a premium tax credit or cost-sharing reduction for that coverage. Large employers that do not offer health care coverage through an exchange and receives a premium tax credit or cost-sharing reduction. However, in that case, the penalty will be equal to $166.67 per month ($2000 per year) for each full time employee.
The article also covers how to determine full time employees, the