Human Resources News & Insights

Should you wait until after election to change your health plan?

First, employers said they were going to wait for the Supreme Court’s ruling on the healthcare reform law before taking steps to comply with its provisions. Now it appears many still think there’s a chance they won’t have to do anything.

Mitt Romney has promised that if he wins the upcoming presidential election, he’ll nullify the healthcare reform law. And of course that would mean employers wouldn’t have to comply with the law’s impending provisions.

Well, many employers have made the decision to see if Romney will get the chance to keep his word — as 16% have said they’ll wait until after the November election to start taking steps to comply with the law’s provisions that take effect in 2014.

Meanwhile, 40% have said they’ll begin to take action now that the Supreme Court has ruled to make sure they’re in compliance when 2014 rolls around.

Those figures come from a Mercer poll of more than 4,000 employers, which was conducted right after the High Court’s ruling to uphold the law.

Other findings:

  • 54% said they plan to be more aggressive about managing health plan costs now that the healthcare reform law has been upheld (41% said they don’t plan to be more aggressive only because they felt they were already taking very aggressive actions to keep costs down)
  • 29% said complying with the requirement to auto-enroll employees in a health plan (unless they opt out) will present a “significant challenge”
  • 28% said complying with the requirement that all employees working an average of 30 hours or more per week must be made eligible for coverage for the company to avoid a penalty will also be a “significant challenge,” and
  • The mandate that has the most employers (47%) worried is the excise tax on high-cost (“Cadillac”) health plans that’s slated to take effect in 2018. However, it’s worth noting this mandate has come under intense fire from business groups, so it’s by no means certain it’ll make it to 2018.
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