Ever since the ACA was signed into law in early 2010, it’s left many employers wondering about the full implications and how it will impact their businesses. Some employers may be curious whether or not it affects them at all. In this post, we will explain the basics of the ACA and provide you with some helpful resources that should answer any questions you may have.
What is the ACA?
At its core, the ACA is a healthcare reform that was designed to provide Americans with adequate health coverage at a reasonable price. It’s also meant to prevent healthcare companies from discriminating against or excluding individuals with existing medical conditions. According to the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, “the Affordable Care Act puts consumers back in charge of their health care. Under the law, a new “Patient’s Bill of Rights” gives the American people the stability and flexibility they need to make informed choices about their health.”
Here are some ACA FAQs by employers regarding this reform:
- Do I have to provide my employees with health coverage?
- Are small businesses affected differently than larger businesses?
- Will I be penalized if I fail to provide coverage?
- How much do penalties cost?
- Am I eligible for tax credits if I provide coverage?
- What is the long-term impact of the ACA going forth?
To help clear up any confusion, here are some great resources to check out:
This site is where can sign up to get coverage for your employees and they can enroll. Under the All Topics section, you can get a quick rundown on how the marketplace works and how to use it. Learn about health insurance basics and the types of coverage that is offered. A key area you will want to focus on is the Businesses section, which goes over the small business health option program (SHOP) and how to enroll. You can learn about the differences between coverage for large vs. small businesses. There’s also information on the qualifications needed to receive tax credits.
The Healthcare section of this site provides a brief overview of the ACA and has some personal stories from people with direct experience with enrollment. This is helpful because of the firsthand insight you can gain, which can come in handy in your decision making process. There is a discussion on how the insurance marketplace works and how employees can find a doctor. In terms of how the law works, this resource explains coverage for children and adults, premium costs and explains the rights of individuals. Some other subjects include prevention and wellness for adults, women and children and facts and figures.
Finally, the U.S. Department of Labor has some great information about the ACA and goes fairly in depth to answer any leftover questions. There is an abundance of info on regulations and guidance, which goes over topics like ACA implementation, enrollment, health benefits, health plans and wellness programs. Numerous studies and surveys should help you learn about any other details you can’t find elsewhere. There are even a few webinars and webcasts for any other concerns you may have.
These resources should help provide a better understanding of the ACA and how it specifically affects your business. For more help in making the best decisions regarding health coverage for your employees download our e-book: What Every Small Business Needs to Know about PPACA.