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The U.S. Administration announced on July 2, 2013, that it will not require employers to provide health insurance for full time workers under the Health Care Reform Employer Mandate (also known as Pay or Play) until 2015. This move will cause a delay in a key provision of Health Care Reform that was scheduled to go into effect in 2014. The delay represents the administration’s response to widespread complaints about the reporting requirements for employers who are subject to the mandate.
The Affordable Care Act requires all employers with more than 50 full time workers to provide affordable health insurance or face a fine as much as $3000 per employee. The policy has raised concerns that companies would downsize their workforce or cut workers’ hours in order to dodge the new mandate.
The Obama Administration has announced that this provision was delayed so officials could simplify reporting requirements and give employers ample time to adjust their health care coverage.
The postponement does not affect other central provisions of the law, including the individual mandate or the establishment of the health insurance marketplaces, known as Exchanges, which are both still set to go into effect in January 2014.
Formal guidance is expected to be released this week. The Obama Administration has said that once the formal guidance is release they will work with employers to encourage them to voluntarily implement this information in 2014 to allow for a smoother transition into 2015.