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Health Care Reform Resource Page

To avoid penalties and put in place effective health benefit strategies under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA or ACA), employers must comply with the law's numerous and complex requirements.  


 Latest Articles


To 'SHOP' or Not: Find the Right Exchange Path
The Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP) didn’t meet expectations. But small employers should weigh their options when SHOP relaunches in November.

Tracking the Excise Tax Impact on Your Plan
Determine if or when your health plan will reach the cost thresholds for the 2018 excise tax.

Agencies Issue Final Rule on ‘Excepted Benefits’
Federal agencies clarify the conditions under which limited-scope vision or dental benefits and certain employee assistance programs are not subject to the Affordable Care Act.

CHROs Shift Health and Labor Policies
Chief HR officers are taking steps to control health benefit costs that include limiting part-time workers’ hours.

Big Employers Expect to Take Excise Tax Hit
Employers will find themselves ensnared in health care reform's excise tax on "high value" plans in 2018, unless they take action now.

Speak Up on Health Reform Fixes
HR pros can influence health care reform by ensuring that policymakers hear their concerns, especially with regards to proposed regulations.

Mid-Year Departures from Cafeteria Plans OK’d
The IRS authorizes employees to revoke their election of a noncalendar year employer health plan in order to purchase a calendar year plan through a public exchange.

Private Exchanges Spur Coverage Shift
Rising costs and regulatory demands will fuel the growth of private health exchanges over the next decade (updated; podcast interview added).

Get Ready to Report
Prepare to compile data in 2015 and develop processes for required reporting to employees and the IRS in 2016.

What Is the Future of Employer-Sponsored Coverage?
Will health care remain employers’ responsibility in the post-ACA landscape? A look at some recent assertions.

SHOP Exchanges May Lure Small Businesses
The delay of small business exchanges in most states confused business owners. But the situation may be improving for 2015 enrollments. 

Narrow Networks Entice Plan Sponsors
Smaller networks of high-quality care providers are increasingly being used to improve health outcomes and lower costs. But employees may push back. 

Use the ACA as a Catalyst for Change
The ACA is an opportunity to redesign your benefit program to better align it with what your high performers need and value. 


 Compliance Updates


 SHRM Webcasts




What You Need to Know Now About the ACA

Presenter: Sheldon Blumling, Fisher & Phillips LLP




Upcoming SHRM Education

Emerging LEAD(HR) Conference
Sept. 30 - Oct. 4 | Las Vegas, Nev.




All Health Care Reform Compliance Q&As

For additional information on implementing the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, please contact the SHRM Knowledge Center.




Think Strategically First
Gary Kushner encourages HR to think strategically first and then tackle compliance second with regards to the Affordable Care Act.

SHOP Exchanges
Gary Kushner tells employers what they should know about the Small Business Health Option Programs.

Srategies to Avoid
Gary Kushner gives HR professionals five health care strategies that will not work. Also, three HR practitioners share insights on how their companies are adapting to reform.

Drop Health Care?
Does it make sense for employers to eliminate health care benefits? That will depend on a company’s business model and strategies for rewards and retention, argues Gary Kushner.

Doing the Math
Eliminating health care is not a simple decision, says Gary Kushner, CEO of Kushner & Co. To prove his point, he walks viewers through a scenario that presents potentially unanticipated costs for employers.

Working with Insurers
Health care reform requires employers to partner closely with their insurers on plan design issues, says Dr. Jeffrey Kang, chief medical officer at Cigna Healthcare.

Medical Payment Reform
Employers and insurers should pay health care providers for the quality of outcomes, not the quantity of services, says Andy Webber, CEO of the National Business Coalition on Health.




2014 Year-End Actions for Health Plans. Via Sidley Austin LLP

2015 Group Health Plan Checklist. Via Benefits Bryan Cave

Timeline for Employer Group Health Plan Compliance. Via Epstein Becker & Green, P.C.

Annual Notice Requirements for Employer Group Health Plans for 2015. Via Miller Johnson.

Health Reform Implementation Timeline. Via Kaiser Family Foundation.

Key ACA Features by Year. Via Dept. of Health & Human Services.

Timeline for Group Health Plans: 2014-2018. Via Sibson Consulting.

Steps to Take for 2015. Via Littler.

Employer Responsibility Timeline. Via Unum.


 Cost & Coverage


 Topic Index




Online Calculators:

Pay or play interactive tool. Via Unum.

Pay or play decision tree. Via Unum.

Estimated-penalty calculator. Via Littler.

Full-time employee worksheet. Via BenefitMall.

Subsidy calculator. Via Kaiser Family Foundation.

Actuarial value calculator / Minimum value calculator. Via Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

Penalty Checklists:

Employer Shared Responsibility Penalties: A Checklist for Employers. Via Snell & Winter LLP.

Consequences of ACA Noncompliance for Group Health Plans. Via Buck Consultants.

Potential Employer Penalties Under the ACA. Via Congressional Research Service.

Fee Overviews:

Self-Funded Employer’s Guide to the Transitional Reinsurance Fee and the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute Fee. Via Unitedhealthcare.

New PPACA Fees Will Strike Employers. Via United Benefit Advisors.

Compliance Guides:

Complying with and Leveraging the Affordable Care Act. A SHRM toolkit (members only).

Out-of-Pocket Limits for 2014 and 2015; Preventive Services Requirements. Via Segal Consulting.

Compliance Checklist for Plan Sponsors.  Via Snell & Wilmer LLP.

The 95% Coverage Rule—The Critical Details. Via Moulder Law.

Applying PPACA Market Reforms to HRAs, FSAs and Other Health Accounts. Via Towers Watson.

DOL Plan Audits: Are You Prepared?  Via McKenna Long & Aldridge LLP.

DOL's Self-Compliance Tool. Via the Department of Labor.

ACA Notice Requirements. Via Segal Consulting.

State-Specific Employer Guidance. Via

State Decisions on Health Exchanges. Via Kaiser Family Foundation.

Triggering Loss of 'Grandfathered' Status. Via Sibson Consulting.

DOL Health Care Reform Webpage. Via U.S Department of Labor. Website. Via U.S. Department of Health & Human Services.

Small Business Health Care Tax Credit. Via IRS.

SHRM Member-Only Excel Spreadsheets:

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