ONLINE ENROLLMENT DELAYED FOR SMALL BUSINESSES IN SOME STATES
Small businesses looking to enroll their employees in health insurance through a federally run Marketplace will have to wait until November. The Obama administration has delayed the start of the online enrollment system for small businesses originally set to launch on October 1st. Prior to November, small businesses will need to complete a paper application in order to purchase insurance in the Marketplace. Federal healthcare reform created small business markets known as SHOP Marketplaces which in 2014 allows companies with up to 50 employees to buy coverage for their employees. Employers that provide employer-sponsored group health plan by purchasing coverage directly from a carrier are not impacted.
The Marketplace is meant to be a one-stop shop for employers and individuals to purchase health insurance from the carriers offering plans in their area. Individuals in all states are able to enroll starting October 1st. The delay only applies to small employers in states where the federal government is taking the lead in building the insurance marketplaces. The delay does not apply to state-based marketplaces, such as in Connecticut, Massachusetts and New York.
For information on the Marketplace in a particular state, visit: https://www.healthcare.gov/what-is-the-marketplace-in-my-state/.