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Employer and Employee-Based Insurance

Employer and Employee-Based Insurance

employee benefits

HEALTH EXCHANGES OPEN NOV. 15

The second year open enrollment period for private insurance plans offered through state and federal marketplaces runs for three months, Nov. 15 to Feb. 15, 2015. Both state-run and Federally-Facilitated Marketplaces have changed web designs and use simpler forms, but have a bigger challenge - serving both brand new applicants and some of the more than 7-million enrollees who want to comparison shop or calculate their premium subsidy for 2015.  NCSL's report has the 50-state history and next year's plans.

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STATE EMPLOYEE HEALTH BENEFITS

NCSL reports on health insurance premiums, program highlights and trends affecting more than six million state workers, retirees and their families, updated for 2014.  This includes NCSL and partners' surveys of how much states pay as employers and how much workers pay for annual premiums.  States also have some new options and requirements because of federal health reform.

 

 

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STATES CHALLENGING CERTAIN REFORMS

21 states now have binding measures seeking to prevent state enforcement or involvement in requiring individuals and employers to purchase health insurance; almost 30 others considered and rejected such legislation in 2010-14. Recent court actions also are listed; with updates as of August 2014.Continue

 

 

EMPLOYER ROLES: HEALTH INSURANCE

Read how the federal Affordable Care Act (ACA) provides that larger employers with 50+ workers offer health insurance to workers, starting January 2015, while small businesses have financial incentives already in place as of 2013, but with no mandate requiring them to provide coverage.  Also see details about SHOP exchanges (now open nationwide but with online applications and choice of plans delayed), and CO-OP plans for small employers and some separate state initiatives established before the federal law.

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OVERVIEW

Most of America's employers already provide some type of health insurance to their workers, usually on a voluntary basis.  Beginning January 2014, the federal Affordable Care Act brings major changes to how and where such insurance is offered.  Large employers (50+ workers) will be required to offer coverage to virtually all employees.  Small employers (fewer than 50 workers) do not have to "play or pay" but they can apply for a tax credit to cover additional workers and buy through Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP) Exchanges set up for every state.  Most workers will be required to obtain affordable coverage, or face a possible IRS penalty if they ignore the requirement.  Several new consumer features will be included in most policies with expanded roles for many state insurance departments.

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