By Jerry Geisel, Crain News Service
WASHINGTON (July 25, 2013) — Employers would have until 2016 to comply with a healthcare reform law provision requiring them to offer coverage to full-time employees or pay a fine under legislation introduced in the U.S. Senate.
The measure, S. 1330, proposed by Sen. Mark Begich, D-Alaska, follows a one-year delay in the so-called pay or play provision announced earlier this month by the U.S. Treasury Department. Federal regulators said the delay is needed to give the government more time to simplify healthcare coverage reporting requirements for employers.
The House of Representatives also has approved bills delaying until 2015 both the employer mandate and the requirement that individuals enroll in a qualified plan or pay a fine.
The Senate, however, is not expected to act on either proposal.
Delaying the employer mandate for two years is necessary "to give businesses time to learn about" the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, Sen. Begich said in a statement.
The provision, which applies to employers with 50 or more full-time employees, requires them to offer qualified coverage or pay a $2,000 penalty for each full-time employee, minus the first 30 employees.
Currently, Sen. Begich's bill does not have any co-sponsors.
This report appeared on the website of Business Insurance magazine, a Chicago-based sister publication of Tire Business.