Employer Mandate Delayed in Health Care Reform

The Obama administration announced late today that they are delaying the Employer Mandate until 2015. The reason stated was due to reporting requirements. As we have known all along, there were going to be changes and tweaks in implementing the Affordable Care Act. This could be a significant change. Since employers are not required to report, they will also not be responsible for the shared responsibility payments. While the Treasury Department “strongly encourages” employers to maintain or expand Group coverage, they will not be required to do so until 2015. This could drive more uninsured into the Individual Health Insurance market. If the Individual Mandate were delayed, but other aspects of Health Care Reform were not, such as Guaranteed Issue, this could have serious consequences. We have recently seen both United Health Care and Aetna withdraw from the California Individual market. No matter where you stand on Health Care Reform, with change, there are consequences. This reminds me of one of the earliest “unintended consequences” of Reform. When children could no longer be denied Health Insurance due to pre-existing conditions, many Insurance Companies were forced to either stop offering Child Only policies, or make a limited plan selection available during a limited Open Enrollment. There are more rules and regulations being released on almost a weekly basis at this point. To stay informed, be sure to visit www.freedomfreequote.com

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