Health Insurance Law: How the Affordable Care Act Affects Georgia Small Businesses
If you are a small business owner in the state of Georgia, health insurance law is probably not your strong suit. But you have a responsibility to your company and employees to understand the impact the Affordable Care Act (ACA) can have on your organization.
The SHOP Marketplace was established by the Affordable Care Act to help small businesses offer employees insurance, anecdotally we can tell you that qualifying for this benefit is cumbersome and not many small businesses have qualified for this program.
This health insurance law requires employers to provide certain information about the Marketplace to employees, whether health insurance is offered or not. If you fall into the following categories, you’re required to report that you provide health coverage:
- Employers with 50 or more full-time (or FTE) employees
- Health insurance issuers
- Self-insuring employers of any size
Summary of Benefits and Coverage (SBC) Disclosure Rules
You are required to provide employees with a standard SBC form explaining not only what their health plan covers, but also what it costs.
The SBC is designed to help employees understand health insurance options. If you don’t provide SBC forms, you could face non-compliance penalties.
Notice of Marketplace Exchange Form (New Health Insurance Marketplace Coverage Options and your Health Coverage )
This form must be given to new employees within 14 days of hire.
Wellness Program Incentives
The ACA grants incentives if you offer wellness programs or other activities to support healthy workplaces.
The maximum reward for wellness programs has increased from 20 to 30 percent of the cost of health insurance coverage, while programs designed to prevent tobacco use are rewarded with 50 percent.
Employer Shared Responsibility (ESR) Payment
If you have a large business with 50 or more full-time or FTE employees and don’t offer insurance to meet minimum standards, you might be subject to pay a non-compliance fine.
Maximum 90-Day Waiting Period
Under ACA law, if you do offer health insurance to employees, you must provide it to all eligible employees within 90 days of their employment.
Additional Resources for Your Georgia Business
- The U.S. Department of Labor provides useful information on the reporting requirements
- Notice of Marketplace Exchange form
- Take a look at the U.S. Department of Labor’s completed sample SBC form
- A guide from the IRS on the rules of the 90-day waiting period (PDF)
- You can also contact us at ShopBenefits.com by filling out a contact form online. We’re always happy to answer any questions you may have – it’s why we’re here!
Shopbenefits.com is committed to making insurance easier and more accessible for businesses of all shapes and sizes. With us, we won’t just give you the link; we’ll be there to give a helping hand whenever you need it.
Contact us for your complimentary review or call (404) 256-2171 and ask for Al Schiebel to see what option is best for your business. Get your affordable quote today!