Don't Forget: October 1, 2013 ACA Notice Deadline for Employers

Sep 24, 2013

By Sean K. Griffee and Aviva Kamm | Related Practice: Employment

While enforcement of the "employer mandate"? under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) has been delayed until 2015, employers are required to send notice to employees by October 1, 2013.

Even employers who are not obligated to provide health care coverage to their workforce must provide the notice. All employers who are subject to the Fair Labor Standards Act (any employer who provides goods or services in interstate commerce or whose annual business volume is at least $500,000) must provide a written notice to all employees.

The notice of coverage options must be made to each employee, regardless of plan enrollment status (if applicable) or of part-time or full-time status.

The notice must describe the services provided by a Marketplace (now commonly described as a health care "exchange"?), and include contact information for the exchange. It must also inform the employee that he or she may be eligible for a premium tax credit if he or she purchases a qualified health plan through the Marketplace. The notice must also inform the employee that if he or she purchases a qualified health plan through the Marketplace, he or she may lose the employer contribution (if any) to any health benefits plan offered by the employer and that all or a portion of such contribution may be excludable from income for federal income tax purposes.

The Department of Labor has provided Model Notices in English and Spanish. Be sure to select the correct model notice for your company—there is one version for employers that offer health care coverage to at least some employees, and one for employers that do not offer coverage.

Notices should be delivered to all current employees on or before October 1, 2013, and be given to employees who are hired after that date.

For additional information about complying with the notice requirement or other questions about employer responsibilities under the Affordable Care Act, contact counsel.