Author Topic: The White House Delays Obamacare's Employer Mandate Yet Again  (Read 292 times)

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Offline mountaineer

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The White House Delays Obamacare's Employer Mandate Yet Again
« on: February 10, 2014, 06:16:42 PM »
Good thing laws don't actually mean anything anymore.
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The White House Delays Obamacare's Employer Mandate Yet Again
 By Patrick Clark     February 10, 2014 
BusinessWeek



Small business owners are getting a reprieve from Obamacare’s employer mandate—again.

In July, the White House said it would delay the mandate, a controversial piece of the Affordable Care Act that will eventually require businesses with 50 or more workers to offer health insurance to employees or pay a fine. That delay pushed back the requirement back one year to Jan. 1, 2015.

Today, the Obama Administration said it would delay the employer mandate to 2016 for companies with 50 to 99 workers. (Employers with fewer than 50 workers were always exempt from the mandate.) Companies with 100 or more workers will have to cover 70 percent of their full-time workers beginning next year, according to a new rule published by the Internal Revenue Service.

“While about 96 percent of employers are not subject to the employer responsibility provision, for those employers that are, we will continue to make the compliance process simpler and easier to navigate,” Mark J. Mazur, the Treasury Department’s assistant secretary for tax policy, said in a statement published by Bloomberg News.

While it’s true that only a small percentage of U.S. businesses would be affected by the mandate, the second delay will likely prove welcome to small business owners who have worried that the requirement would force them to fire workers or move employees from full-time to part-time status.

The delay may also help assuage business owners frustrated by another Obamacare setback: the slower-than-promised roll-out of Small Business Health Option Programs, or SHOPS, which are exchanges where small businesses can buy insurance that meets standards set by the health reform law.
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Offline mountaineer

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Re: The White House Delays Obamacare's Employer Mandate Yet Again
« Reply #1 on: February 10, 2014, 06:18:30 PM »
Washington Times:
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Another key Obamacare mandate delayed again
Employer requirement will be phased in later for mid-sized businesses

The Obama administration announced Monday it is delaying the new health care law’s “employer mandate” for one more year among mid-sized companies, a move that is sure to renew political recriminations among Republicans who feel the White House is protecting Democratic allies in a key election year.

In final regulations, the Treasury and IRS said employers with 50 to 99 employees now have until 2016 to comply with the controversial rule. It is the second time the Obama administration has delayed the mandate by one year, after it pushed it last summer from 2014, as the law had it when written and passed, to 2015.

In its original form, the mandate required firms who employed the equivalent of 50 or more full-time workers to provide adequate health coverage or pay fines.

Republicans and some Democrats attacked the mandate as a job killer, citing employers in their districts who decided to trim payroll or freeze hiring to stay under the 50-employer cap. Those who employ 50 or fewer workers never had to worry about the mandate.

Critics also lambasted the move as an underhanded ploy to put off any pain from the mandate until after the 2014 mid-term elections.

Republicans reacted swiftly to Monday’s news, saying a delay for employers should be matched by relief for everyday Americans subject to the individual mandate, a part of the law that requires almost all Americans to hold health insurance.

“The White House is doing everything possible to hide the devastating impacts of this law until after the election,” said Sen. John Barasso, Wyoming Republican. “While this may be a temporary break for employers, middle class families will still be forced to prove they have expensive, government mandated insurance.  After all the waivers and delays, Americans continue to ask — ‘what about me?’”

In addition, the Treasury’s announcement phased in the mandate for companies with 100 or more workers. Now, these employers need only provide health coverage for 70 percent of full-time workers in 2015 and 95 percent of them in 2016 and beyond, the department said.

“While about 96 percent of employers are not subject to the employer responsibility provision, for those employers that are, we will continue to make the compliance process simpler and easier to navigate,” said Mark J. Mazur, assistant secretary for tax policy.

“Today’s final regulations phase in the standards to ensure that larger employers either offer quality, affordable coverage or make an employer responsibility payment starting in 2015 to help offset the cost to taxpayers of coverage or subsidies to their employees,” he said.

Employers and lawmakers from both parties say the mandate contains a key flaw, in that it defines a full-time work-week as 30 hours instead of the traditional 40 hours per week.

They said this definition caught employers flat-footed, because they now have to take on the expense of providing health coverage to employees who worked fewer than 40 hours and whom they considered part-timers.

In a fact sheet on the regulations, the Treasury Department said the transitional period would help employers “that, for example, may offer coverage to employees with 35 or more hours, but not yet to that fraction of their employees who work 30 to 34 hours.”

The new rule also clarified how it defines certain workers.

Volunteer firefighters or emergency medical responders will not be counted as full-time employees that count toward the mandate, while teachers will not be treated as part-timers for a full year just because their schools are closed or operate for limited hours during the summer.  '''


Read more: http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2014/feb/10/health-laws-employer-requirement-will-phase/#ixzz2sxqBHw8E


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Offline Rapunzel

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Re: The White House Delays Obamacare's Employer Mandate Yet Again
« Reply #2 on: February 10, 2014, 09:03:56 PM »
Buried in this extension is another thing - under the threat of PURJURY an employer who takes advantage of this extension has to certify to the IRS he or she has not and will not lay off ANY EMPLOYEES or cut ANY HOURS of their employees.    Soooooooooo now if you lay off a person or fire a person you now have to justify this directly to the IRS.
« Last Edit: February 10, 2014, 09:04:44 PM by Rapunzel »
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