Making Decisions About Home Care

Own A Business? 4 Things You Need To Know About Your Employee Health Coverage

by Mae Ferguson

Whether you own a large business or a small mom-and-pop shop, you might not be exempt from new healthcare laws. Healthcare reform was designed to ensure that more people have access to affordable healthcare options. Unfortunately, part of the responsibility for that coverage fell on the shoulders of business owners. To make sure you're in compliance with the current healthcare laws, here are four things you need to know.

You Need to Consider the Number of Employees

When it comes to employee healthcare, the number of employees you have matters for your bottom line. If you're a small operation that employs fewer than 50 employees, you're not obligated to carry healthcare coverage for your employees. However, if you employ more than 50 employees, you're required to either a) provide healthcare coverage for your employees, or b) pay a tax penalty each year.

You Must Provide a Summary for Your Employees

If you're required to carry healthcare coverage for your employees, you must also provide them with a summary of the coverage they'll receive. The summary that you provide your employees should include a glossary of the key terms, as well as provide detailed information about all of covered care. The summary is designed to ensure that all employees are well informed about the medical care that they can receive.

You May Need to Report to the IRS

Because the IRS is responsible for overseeing the new healthcare laws, you'll be required to provide them with information regarding the value of the healthcare you provide to your employees. Depending on the number of employees that you have, you may also be required to include the information on your employee W2s. If you will be issuing more than 250 W2s, you'll be required to include the value of the group healthcare coverage on each of those W2s. However, if you'll be issuing fewer than 250 W2s, you will not be required to report the value.

You Need to Understand the Employer Tax Credit

If you have fewer than 25 employees, you might have decided to provide healthcare benefits so that you could take advantage of the employer tax credit. While this might be a good idea, it's important that you understand the tax credit before you provide benefits. There are several specific requirements involved before you can receive the maximum credit on your taxes.

  • You must have fewer than 25 full-time employees
  • You must pay less than an average of $50,000 in wages per employee
  • You must pay at least half of your employee healthcare premiums

If you own a business, make sure you're in compliance with the current healthcare laws. The information provided here will help you understand your responsibilities pertaining to employee healthcare. Contact a company like Employers Health Coalition for more information.