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A provision of Health Care Reform requires employers to provide a notice to all employees regarding the availability of health coverage options through the state-based exchanges. The Department of Labor delayed the original requirement that the notice be distributed by March 1, 2013, as it was determined that there was not enough information regarding exchange availability.
The DOL recently issued temporary guidance along with a model notice. The DOL has issued the model notice early so employers can begin informing their employees now about the upcoming coverage options through the marketplace.
Two model notices were released by the DOL. One is for employers who currently offer medical coverage and the other is for those who do not offer medical coverage.
Employers are required to issue the exchange coverage notice no later than October 1, 2013. This will coincide with the beginning of the open enrollment period for the marketplace.
The notice must be provided to all employees, regardless of their enrollment on the group health plan. It must be provided to both full time and part time employees as well. Employers are not required to provide a separate notice to dependents. Employers will need to provide the notice to each new employee (regardless of their status) who are hired on or after October 1, 2013 within 14 days of their hire.
An exchange coverage notice must include –
The DOL also modified its model COBRA election notice to include information about the availability of exchange coverage options and eliminate certain obsolete language in the earlier model.
Please contact our office for a copy of the model notice(s).
Our topic this month covers the Final Rule from HHS and the Exchanges.
Areas discussed include:
Contact us today for more information on this topic.