Prepare for Affordable Care Act: Tips for Employers

With the Affordable Care Act (ACA) set to go into effect in January 2014, many employers supporting group health care plans are rushing to get ready for the impending changes. Here are some tips on how to prepare for the upcoming implementation of the ACA:

1. Figure out how the ACA will affect your business. According to Forbes, when the ACA is ratified, it will oblige businesses with over 50 full time workers to offer affordable healthcare to them. The ACA is demanding employer coverage just for those who work over 30 hours per week for a period of a month. Corporations who wish to avoid providing this medical insurance for their workers and who are on the verge of having 50 employees may then look to temps and staffing agencies in order to evade being forced to obey the law or create more part-time jobs as another way to shirk the ACA’s policies. Companies doing this will undermine the legislation and its intentions of increasing coverage to more American employees.

2. Choose whether to “pay” or “play” and make decisions about your insurance. To “pay” is to pay employer-shared-responsibility penalties of around $2,000 per employee per year. To “play” is to offer employer-sponsored coverage to fulltime employees.

3. Think about adding wellness program incentives. According to a recent survey by the Midwest Business Group on Health, more than 80% of the country’s biggest employers are looking to implement a penalty and reward system to encourage their workers to get healthy.

4. Organize and give out obligatory employee communications like a summary of benefits and coverage, plan descriptions, etc.

5. Amend your Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act privacy and security rules and processes before the Sept. 23, 2013, deadline for acquiescence with final regulations.

6. Pay the first comparative effectiveness research fees by July 31, 2013, and plan for future reinsurance charges.