Health Care Exchanges and ESR Provision Updates

Issued February 28, 2013

As Health Care Reform provisions continue to be implemented, we are committed to providing you with timely, accurate information and support to handle all of your related insurance needs. Two recent developments include:

Employer Deadline to Provide Exchange Information to Employees Postponed

The original March 1, 2013, deadline for employers to provide specific written information to employees about Health Care Exchanges (Marketplaces) has been postponed by the Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and the Treasury.

The projected new date will be late summer or early fall 2013 – the same time open enrollments are expected for the Exchanges. For more information, view the latest Health Care Reform Frequently Asked Questions.

Employer Shared Responsibility Updates

The Employer Shared Responsibility (ESR) provisions of the Affordable Care Act address the issue regarding employers' responsibility to provide employees with health insurance coverage. The IRS recently provided clarification on multiple aspects of these provisions, including:

  • Determining "household income" to assess an employer's offer of minimum essential coverage (MEC) will be based solely on the individual employee
  • An employer will be considered to offer MEC if it is offered to the greater of:
    • All but 5 percent of full-time employees and their dependents, or
    • All but 5 full-time employees and their dependents