It has always been EBAC's priority to help your company stay compliant with current and future laws and regulations. With the roll out of the Affordable Care Act (ACA, Obama Care), EBAC is here to lend a hand in anyway we can. We will keep you up to date with information we feel is important as it is made available to us. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact our office. We will be happy to help you!
Please see the information below regarding the new Health Insurance Marketplace notices that must be delivered to your employees no later than October 1st, 2013.
The Affordable Care Act (ACA) requires all employers subject to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA)* to provide notices to all current employees and new hires regarding the new Health Insurance Marketplace (in CA, Covered California) and the subsidies available to qualified individuals. The notices to current employees must be provided no later than October 1, 2013. Here are some helpful tips and resources:
Both employers offering coverage and those that do not offer coverage must provide notices. The Department of Labor (DOL) has provided model notices in English and Spanish which are available at the end of this entry.
All current Employees must receive these notices - full time, part time, and seasonal - whether or not they are eligible for or currently enrolled on the employer sponsored plan.
Current COBRA beneficiaries also should receive a notice by 10/1/2013. DOL has provided a new COBRA Model Election Notice in English and Spanish, which are available at the end of this entry.
Both union and non-union employees must receive notices. The employer should contact the union representative to coordinate delivery of notices to union employees.
On page 2 of the model notice for employers with coverate it reads "If checked, this coverage meets the minimum value standard, and the cost of this coverage is intended to be affordable, based on employee wages." The minimum value (MV) standard means the plan pays 60% or more of the covered benefits in-network. Affordability means full-time employees pay no more than 9.5% of their W-2 Box 1 income or rate of pay for self-only coverage on the lowest cost plan offered by the employer that meets the minimum value standard (60%).
Page 3 of the DOL model notice for employers with coverage is OPTIONAL. (This page requires entry of information specific to each employee including their portion of the monthly premium for the lowest cost plan offered that meets the minimum value standard. Since the deadlines for final decisions regarding 12/1/2013 early renewals are after this 10/1/2013 notice deadline, many small employers will not have this information.)
New Hires (full-time and part-time) should receive a notice within 14 days of hire date.
The expiration date on the current DOL model notices is November 30, 2013. We will post new model notices when they become available.
Some small employers may not be subject to the FLSA because they are not involved in interstate commerce and do not meet the test of not less than $500,000 in annual dollar volume of business (exclusive of taxes at the retail level). It is important to remember IRS common ownership rules apply. Therefore, an employer with several small businesses may be one "enterprise" that is subject to FLSA.*
* In general, the FLSA applies to employers that employ one or more employees who are engaged in, or produce goods for interstate commerce. For most firms, a test of not less than $500,000 in annual dollar volume of business applies. THe FLSA also specifically covers the following entities: hospitals; institutions primarily engaged in the care of the sick, the aged, mentally ill, o r disabled or gifted; preschools, elementary and secondary schools, and institutions of higher education; and federal, state and local government agencies.
** We have seen material from other sources indicating these notices cannot be hand-delivered; but must be mailed to the employees' home addresses. We contacted Elizabeth Schumacher, the DOL/EBSA contact person whose name appears on Technical Release 2013-02. Ms. Schumacher indicated employers may distribute these notices via first-class mail or electronically (in accordance with the DOL safe harbor for electronic disclosure), but these are not the only approved methosds of delivery. Hand delivery is an acceptable means of distribution. For example, small employers may hand-deliver these notices when they pass out checks, distribute renewal packets, or give new hire kits.