Last March, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services issued final regulations concerning the establishment of exchanges and qualified health plans and exchange standards for employers. Within the final regulations, the general standards for the exchange notice requirement were provided. However, additional information is forthcoming from the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL). The DOL is expected to release a model notice, along with additional guidance, prior to the March 1, 2013, effective date.
Employer Action Required
On March 1, 2013, employers will be required to distribute a notice of exchange to current employees and new employees. Employees hired on or after the effective date must be provided the notice of exchange at the time of hiring, while employees already employed on the effective date of March 1, 2013, will need to receive the notice no later than that date. The notice requirement applies to employers who are subject to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).
Penalties for Noncompliance
There is no known penalty at this time.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What employers are subject to the FLSA and thus subject to the notice of exchange requirement?
A: The term “employer” is defined in the FLSA as “any person acting directly or indirectly in the interest of an employer in relation to an employee.” This broad definition will likely encompass most employers.
Q: Is the notice required to be distributed to all employees or only those who are eligible for coverage?
A: Until further guidance is issued, it is believed that the notice should be distributed to all employees. The FLSA defines an employee as “an individual employed by an employer.”
Q: May the notice be provided electronically (i.e., via email)?
A: The accepted methods of distribution are not yet known. However, it is expected that the notice may be distributed electronically in accordance with DOL guidelines for electronic disclosure.
For more information on Idaho’s Health Exchange Insurance please give us a call at (208) 377-7101.
IDAHO INSURANCE AGENCY
Paul King and Charlotte Hildebrandt
1650 Albright Ln #101
Boise, Idaho 83709