Adam Solander Quoted in “Mandate Delay Is Good News for Employers, But May Mean More Bumps for Carriers”

AIS's Inside Health Insurance Exchanges

Adam Solander, an Associate in the Health Care and Life Sciences practice, in the Washington, DC, office, was quoted in an article titled "Mandate Delay Is Good News for Employers, But May Mean More Bumps for Carriers."

Following is an excerpt:

While the recently delayed employer mandate gives midsized employers a little breathing room, it throws yet another curveball to health insurers. A final rule (79 Fed. Reg. 8543) issued Feb. 10 by the Treasury Dept. delays — for the second time — a requirement that employers with between 50 and 99 full-time workers offer health coverage or pay a penalty. ?...

The delay is good news for midsized employers (50 to 99 employees), many of which were struggling to comply with the mandate, says Adam Solander, an associate at the law firm Epstein Becker Green. Employers with fewer than 100 employees typically don't have a human resources staff to help the owners understand the rules. ?...

The employer mandate was supposed to go into effect in 2014, but was pushed back to 2015 and now, with the latest delay, is two years in the offing. At its core, Treasury's final rule exempts employers with 50 to 99 employees from tax penalties tied to the mandate. It also reduces the percentage of workers that larger employers must cover in 2015 to avoid penalties. The new threshold is 70%, down from 95%. Large employers that do not provide coverage to this share of their workforce will pay a $2,000 fine per employee above the first 30 workers starting in 2015.

"Under the old rules, you were subject to penalties if you didn't offer coverage to 95% of your employees, but transitional relief allows for a 70% threshold for the first year. It provides some comfort for employers, particularly those that might have a lot of part-timers or contract employees," says Solander. "It takes some of the guesswork out for employers."