Obamacare Update: Business Obligations & Hiring Impact

Businesses need to act by Oct. 1 to ensure compliance with the Affordable Care Act.
PublicPolicy-blog

The employer-coverage mandate of the Affordable Care Act – commonly referred to as Obamacare – may have been pushed back to 2015, but businesses still have an obligation to notify their employees about the availability of the health insurance marketplace, or exchanges, by Oct. 1.

Under this rule, any employer covered by the Fair Labor Standards Act – in general, employers engaged in interstate commerce with annual revenue of $500,000 or more, according to an alert from the National Association of Wholesaler-Distributors – has to provide written notice to all employees of available health care options. New employees must receive the notification when they are hired. (In 2014, the requirement for new hires is within 14 days of their start dates.)

This applies to all employers, even if they are not required to provide health insurance to their employees under the ACA, and to all employees, full- or part-time.

This is important to keep in mind, even as the ACA continues to affect hiring. According to the latest Duke University/CFO Magazine Global Business Outlook Survey, 59 percent of CFOs said that part-time and temporary workers are now making up a larger proportion of their workforces. Some of that can be attributed to the enduring economic uncertainty, but 38 percent of those respondents say the shift has occurred in part due to the implementation of the ACA.

In spite of this, full-time domestic employment is expected to increase by nearly 2 percent in the U.S., and profits are expected to rise by more than 10 percent, according to the survey.

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