Amherst Chamber of CommerceAmherst Chamber of Commerce



Health Care Reform is very confusing.  It is a total paradigm shift from how we are accustomed to selecting our health insurance. While the long term objective is to make it easier for every person in the United States to have access to affordable health care; getting there is turning out to be a huge lift.  As mentioned in an earlier article, facts are being made public and policies decided each day as we get closer to going live but for individuals and firms not close to the decision makers, it is still hard to get your arms around.

Here is a list of things you can do to prepare for the October 1 launch:

1.       Estimate the number of employees you have to calculate whether you are required to offer insurance.  This calculation involves employees on your payroll in 2013. 

2.      Figure out the number of full-time employees who work an average of 30 hours per week in a calendar month.  This includes seasonal employees.

3.      Then take all of your part time employees.  Add the number of hours worked by non-full-time employees (including seasonal employees) and divide by 120.  This will get you an additional number of full time equivalents.

4.      Add your full time employees and full time equivalents, calculated in the first two steps, for each of the q2 months in the preceding calendar year. 

5.      Add the monthly totals and divide by 12.  If the average exceeds 50 full time equivalents you are required to provide health insurance for your employees or pay a penalty.  Most firms with this employee count work with a broker.

Our large group partner, Lawley Benefits Group, has already mobilized a Health Care Exchange for businesses with more than 50 employees. Call us at the Amherst Chamber at 632-6905 for more information. Next month we will provide information for firms with fewer than fifty employees and what options they have. But, once again, the Amherst Chamber is prepared to walk you thought the process as your trusted advisor.


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