The employer mandate under the Affordable Care Act has been delayed for a second time for certain employers. Under the law, companies with 50 or more full-time employees are required to offer affordable health insurance to their employees and their dependents or pay a fine. Companies with fewer than 50 employees are exempt from the law.
The employer mandate was originally scheduled to go into effect for all employers on January 1, 2014. It was delayed for one year until 2015 to give businesses more time to comply with the law’s requirements. Employers with 50 to 99 full-time workers have been given an additional one year grace period and have until 2016 to provide affordable health insurance to their employees. Companies with 100 or more employees were also given additional relief. Instead of having to provide insurance coverage to 95 percent of their employees by 2015, these larger employers will avoid a penalty as long as they cover 70 percent of their employees by that deadline. Once the law fully takes effect in 2016, all employers subject to the mandate will have to provide insurance coverage for 95 percent of their full-time employees.