Small business owners always have to deal with changing regulations, from their state and from their country – but few changes have ever been as confusing as those put into place by the Affordable Care Act. The ACA has set a deadline by which almost all business owners – even the small firms – will be required by law to provide health insurance coverage to their employees.
The ACA also allows for a new way of obtaining health care, via government-subsidized state-run “exchanges.” All these changes are leading to a lot of questions among business owners, and we’ve got the answers to a few of those questions below.
Q: Which businesses qualify for credits for government-subsidized health care?
Answer: If you have fewer than 25 full-time employees, and they make an average of less than $50,000 per year, then you may be qualified to obtain significant savings in regards to health care. If your business fits those qualifications, and also pays at least 50 percent of your full-time employees’ premium costs, then you can obtain a tax credit worth up to half of your entire investment in your employee’s premiums.
If your business is of that size, you won’t face any repercussions if you choose not to provide health care – but as you can see, there are potentially major tax credits in your future if you choose to.
Q: Which businesses are required to provide health care coverage?
A: Technically, no businesses are completely required to offer health care coverage. However – starting in 2015 – large businesses who choose not to provide their employees with health care may have to make penalty payments to the government. If you have fewer than 50 full-time employees, this doesn’t concern you. If your business does have more than 50 employees, however, then you need to plan for the new provisions – or you’ll need to pay a penalty.
Q: What if my business employs more than 50 individuals?
A: If you employ more than 50 employees, then you’re a “large business” in terms of the new health care law. That means you need to provide your employees with coverage, either via state-run marketplaces or private insurance providers. If you don’t, then you’ll need to pay the aforementioned penalty on a yearly basis, and you may potentially face other conflicts.
Do you have other questions about the ACA? Let us know – our team is ready to answer your questions.