To the editor:
The Obama administration announced Tuesday, July 3, that it is delaying a major provision in the health care overhaul, putting off until 2015 a requirement that many employers offer health insurance.
The announcement was made late Tuesday by the Treasury Department, at the beginning of the holiday week. The change in the employer mandate is arguably the most significant adjustment the administration has made to date. Employers welcome this delay.
The delay until 2015 means that employers no longer need to provide an affordable health care policy to their employees that has a minimum value and includes specific benefits during 2014. Prior to this change, employers would have faced a penalty of either $3,000 or $2,000 per employee depending on specific circumstances.
The law requires companies that employ 50 or more workers to offer coverage or face fines. The Treasury Department and the White House said that, based on complaints by employers that the system for reporting the coverage was too onerous, they would simplify that system and give employers an additional year to comply.
The administration states that all other major aspects of the legislation will remain on schedule, including the individual mandate state and federal health insurance marketplaces, and subsidy eligibility.
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Tonda Soisson Lawson
Benefits Department Manager
Brown & Brown of Florida Inc.