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Impact of Affordable Care Act on Small Business Health Insurance in NY

small business health insuranceIn many ways the Affordable Care Act is already impacting small business health insurance in NY.  However, the full roll out doesn’t happen until 2014 so it’s important that we as small business owners are prepared for what is to come.

There is no debating the value to small businesses in offering health insurance to your employees. But the cost alone can make offering health insurance a real challenge for small businesses. On average, small businesses pay about 18% more than the large firms they compete against for the same health insurance policy.

What hurts NY small businesses is the lack combined purchasing power in sheer numbers of contracts that larger employers have based on employee count. Politics aside the Affordable Care Act is a health care law currently providing tax credits and benefits and as of 2014 will also offer NY small business the ability to shop for health insurance in exchanges.

Affordable Care Act items that will impact NY Small Business Health Insurance

1) Currently, if you have under 25 employees and offer a NY group health insurance plan, based on average salary and a few other determining factors you could be receiving up to a 35% credit on your taxes (I would recommend talking to a tax professional).

2) Included in the Affordable Care Act is a program titled Early Retiree Reinsurance Program which provides assistance to small businesses who offer NY health insurance programs to retirees ages 55 – 64.
Possible changes in 2014

3) The small business tax credit for businesses with 25 or fewer employees could go up to 50% for qualifying businesses.

4) any NY small businesses looking for health insurance somewhere in the vicinity of fewer than 100 employees can use an “Affordable Insurance Exchange” to shop for their health insurance needs. This exchange will allow NY small businesses to pool their resources similar to what larger corporations do.

5) NY small business health insurance exchanges will offer a variety of different health insurance plans that provide benefits to meet all standards set by New York State.

6) Starting in 2014 there will be an assessment that NY small businesses have to pay if they don’t provide health insurance to their employees.  Employers with fewer than 50 employees are exempt from from having to pay this assessment if their employees get their health insurance through an exchange.

The Insurance Take-Away

The NY small business health insurance landscape is changing quickly and even though there are some features of the health insurance exchanges we understand there are many yet we don’t.

In order to stay on top of these changes it’s important that you partner with a health insurance agent that is actively following the Affordable Care Act and it’s impact on NY small business health insurance.

The Murray Group and our health insurance specialists, Ryan Murray CIC and John Willey, would like to guide your business through this turbulent time.

Call them today at (518) 456-6688 or click here to begin a relationship by email.

Thank you,

Ryan Hanley, CIC