Affordable Care Act

 

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act , otherwise known as the ACA, enacted comprehensive health insurance reforms designed to improve Americans access to affordable health insurance.

 

Key Provisions of the Affordable Care Act

The Affordable Care Act was created with the idea that no two businesses are alike. The act includes a variety of measures tailored for small business that helps lower costs and increases access to quality health insurance. Depending on whether you are self-employed, an employer with fewer than 25 employees, an employer with fewer than 50 employees, or an employer with 50 or more employees, different provisions of the Affordable Care Act may apply to you. Learn about the key provisions of the Affordable Care Act based on the size of your business below.

Self-Employed


Find out which Affordable Care Act provisions may impact self-employed individuals

Employers with Fewer Than 25 Employees


Find out which key Affordable Care Act provisions may impact small businesses with fewer than 25 employees.

Employers with Up to 50 Employees


Find out which Affordable Care Act provisions may impact small businesses with up to 50 employees.

Employers with 50 or More Employees


Find out which key Affordable Care Act provisions may impact small businesses with 50 or more employees.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need to get health insurance?

If your annual income is less than $9,350, or household income is less than $18,700, you won't be required to get health insurance in 2014. You're also exempt if you have to pay more than 8% of your annual income toward health insurance premiums.

If none of these exemptions apply, then you'll be required to get health insurance under the individual mandate of the Affordable Care Act, starting January 1, 2014.

What happens if I don't get health insurance?
The 2014 penalties for not having health insurance are as follows: $95 per adult, $47.50 per child, up to $285 per family, or 1% of the annual family income, whichever is greater. The penalties go up significantly each year, and starting in 2016 the penalties are $695 per adult, $347.50 per child, up to a maximum of $2,085 per family, or 2.5% of family income, whichever is greater.
How can I get health insurance?
There are many different ways to get coverage: through your employer, your spouse (if he/she is covered by their employer), your parents (if you're under the age of 26), or on your own by purchasing individual health insurance for yourself and your family if applicable. There will be several places where you'll be able to purchase individual health insurance, such as public exchanges that each state will make available, or through a number of private health exchanges such as www.ehealth.com. Enrollment will start on Oct 1, 2013, and coverage will start on Jan 1, 2014.
How do I know if I am a small or large employer? Why does it matter?

An employer’s size is determined by the number of its employees. Employer benefits, opportunities and requirements are dependent upon the employer’s size and the applicable rules. Generally, an employer with 50 or more full-time employees or equivalents will be considered a large employer.

Employers with:

  • Fewer than 25 full-time equivalent employees may be eligible for a Small Business Health Care Tax Credit to help cover the cost of providing coverage.
  • Generally 50 or fewer employees may be eligible to buy coverage through the Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP). Learn more at HealthCare.gov
  • 50 or more full-time equivalent employees will need to file an annual return reporting whether and what health insurance they offered employees. In addition, they are subject to the Employer Shared Responsibility provisions.

Certain affiliated employers with common ownership or part of a controlled group must aggregate their employees to determine their workforce size. Proposed regulations (pdf) and FAQs provide more information about determining the size of your workforce.

Where can I go for more information?

As always, you can contact your local SBDC for more information about the Affordable Care Act or small business in general. You can also look for more information at:

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