White House Extends Employer Mandate Deadline

John Commins, July 3, 2013

Employers have an additional year—until Jan. 1, 2015—before reporting requirements mandated by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act go into effect. The unexpected policy decision comes in response to employer concerns about the complexity of data reporting requirements.

In a surprising announcement Tuesday afternoon the Obama administration said it would delay until Jan. 1 2015 a key provision of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act that requires mid-sized and large employers to provide health insurance for their workers or pay a fine.

Mark J. Mazur, assistant Secretary for Tax Policy at the U.S. Department of the Treasury, said on a blog posting that the decision to roll back the implementation date for businesses with 50 or more employees was made after "several months" of negotiations with businesses.

"We have heard concerns about the complexity of the requirements and the need for more time to implement them effectively," Mazur said in the blog. "We recognize that the vast majority of businesses that will need to do this reporting already provide health insurance to their workers, and we want to make sure it is easy for others to do so. We have listened to your feedback. And we are taking action."

"The Administration is announcing that it will provide an additional year before the ACA mandatory employer and insurer reporting requirements begin. This is designed to meet two goals. First, it will allow us to consider ways to simplify the new reporting requirements consistent with the law. Second, it will provide time to adapt health coverage and reporting systems while employers are moving toward making health coverage affordable and accessible for their employees. "

 

John Commins

John Commins is a senior editor at HealthLeaders Media.

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