Has ACA strengthened appeal of employer mandate?


Despite a more-than rocky rollout of the Affordable Care Act, and increasing claims that the employer-mandate is growing more unpopular, the healthcare reform law has potentially strengthened the appeal of such a provision.

While many critics feared the employer mandate would weaken an already fragile industry, businesses and employers appropriately prepared for such inevitable changes since the ruling was upheld in 2012, reports Yahoo Finance.

For starters, the provision provides a cop out for companies who don't wish to deal with their employees' healthcare, suggests Yahoo.

The provision states that if companies with 50 or more full-time workers do not offer coverage, they must pay an annual penalty of $2,000 per worker. Meaning, the employee would then enroll in the federal marketplace or on the private market.

But as it turns out, it appears more Americans will end up with employer-based plans. This is thanks, in part, to more and more full-time jobs added each month throughout the country. So the number of companies with more than 50 full-time employees is picking up, notes Yahoo.

Critics assume workers generally do not care about their employees' well-being, considering many worry that because the law applies only to employers with 50 or more full-time workers, employers may shift people to part-time positions, FierceHealthPayer previously reported.

Yet if employers were to cancel their employees' plans, and transition them onto an exchange, it may be bad business for the company, suggests Yahoo.

However, smaller business may feel the heat more so than the larger companies. ACA guidelines state that employers must have at least two full-time employees in order to be eligible for group plans. Meaning, many small business owners were kicked off their small-business plans earlier this year and must now find individual coverage or face a penalty.

For more:
- here's the Yahoo Finance article

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