Health Reform

Health Reform – it’s more complicated than you can imagine

 

Health reform affects everyone. 

  • Beginning January 1, 2014, individuals may purchase policies without pre-existing conditions limitations.  To cover the added cost, Californians purchasing individual policies will face dramatically higher premiums.  Individuals purchasing individual policies should expect price increases of 64% to 146% on or shortly after January 1 according to a recent Forbes article.   We also expect that many networks of health providers in the individual policy market will become much smaller and that may mean that many will need to change doctors.  Employees who have access to health insurance at work should consider this when making enrollment decisions during their 2013 open enrollment.
  • Beginning January 1, 2014, individuals who do not purchase health insurance will pay new penalties (taxes).The new tax begins at 1% of family income in 2014 and increases to 2.5% of income by 2016.
  • Employers with 50 or more full-time equivalent employees must offer employees minimum coverage that is  “affordable” or be assessed a non-deductible penalty tax.  Although employer penalties are now deferred until at least January 1, 2015, employers must compare the costs to “Play or Pay” and plan early to optimize their costs.
  • Employers with fewer than 50 full-time equivalent employees will need to decide which of the many complicated new options will serve the employer best.  In many cases, employers will consider dropping group health benefits with the idea of sending employees to the exchange.  Who will be the winners and losers and by how much?

Everyone will need expert advice to make the best decisions.  California Corporate Benefits provides answers.  Our comprehensive consulting, education and training help employers make the best possible decisions and help staff confidently comply with the new law’s provisions.

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