Since we wrote last week about our lack of confidence in the IRS running health care, the government agency has been blasted with controversy this week over targeting the Tea Party and other conservative political groups for extra scrutiny over tax exemption status. Yesterday ABC News confirmed that the IRS official in charge of tax-exempt organizations between 2009 and 2012, Sarah Hall Ingram, is now the director of the Affordable Care Act office of the IRS. Her former deputy commissioner Joseph Grant is taking the fall, as he was just appointed to lead the tax-exempt office in the beginning of May and has already announced his retirement. The scandal does not increase public confidence in the agency to execute the extremely complicated PPACA, especially if you're a Tea Party member!
While U.S. businesses figure out how to handle the Affordable Care Act, the Internal Revenue Service is gearing up for the huge task of deciding who pays for it and how much. When the Supreme Court upheld the law last year, it put the IRS in charge, allowing the agency to enforce the mandate through tax penalties.
Back in 2010, we reported on a study finding that 1/5 of small business employers were considering dropping their plans with the onset of Obamacare.
The ACA gives employers more flexibility in creating incentives for employees to participate in wellness programs. This article in Business Insurance illustrates the efforts of several large employers to do exactly that:
SHOP stands for "Small Business Health Options Program." It is intended to be part of the health exchanges opening next year at an internet URL near you (either your state or the federally-facilitated exchange ("FFE")). The SHOP is meant for employers with less than 100 employees, though states will be able to restrict that number to less than 50 until 2017.
It's only 21 pages! Simple no? This is only the beginning. Check out the portion of the application that the employer has to complete.
OOOOOOOOOOOKLAHOMA! Sorry, I bet the good folks North of the Red River get that way too much. If you are hanging in Lawton, OK tomorrow or happen to be near one the twelve satelite locations receiving the data feed from Lawton, don't miss my hour long talk on what the Affordable Care Act has in store for employers! You can RSVP here.
In January, we questioned whether the ACA would force insurance carriers to eliminate their "participation rate" requirements. These are rules that carriers have put in place to guard against adverse selection (i.e., what happens when only the sick people sign up for the health insurance).