Well, the big plan to replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA) did not happen, so what is an employer to do?
The good news is that you are (hopefully!) already doing it. Keep on keeping on!
The bad news is that all of that relief you were seeking from the AHCA is now gone, so we need to continue onward with the ACA for now.
First, keep up with your reporting and all other ACA requirements. I know the IRS does not require individuals to report their insurance coverage on their tax forms anymore, but you are still required to report to individuals and submit your federal filing on time.
Next, think ahead. The dreaded “Cadillac Tax” is still looming large in 2020. That means that the 40% excise tax for more generous medical benefits is still out there, and you should probably be planning toward falling under the limits in 2020.
What does that mean? Right now we are not so sure. We do know that the prior limits that were originally set to go live in 2018 will be indexed for the future implementation dates. However, we don’t yet know exactly what they will be. The 2018 limits were $10,200 for individual coverage, and $27,500 for family coverage, so using those numbers are the best bet for now.
We were also promised some relief to adverse selection including some allowance for an older/sicker workforce. That sounds like a step in the right direction, but still makes planning for 2020 difficult, at best.
My guess is that the 2020 implementation will be further delayed, as we debate the ongoing ACA (or any replacement) and how we pay for these now entitled benefits. Employers need to stay on top of compliance issues, and not bury heads in the sand. The year 2020 will be here sooner than any of us want.
Stay tuned and thanks for reading.