May 5, 2014

New Rule Requires Employers To Notify Laid-Off Workers Of ACA Insurance Option

The Wall Street Journal (5/3, Radnofsky, Subscription Publication) reports that Obama Administration released new rules Friday that said employers must notify laid-off workers that they are eligible to buy health insurance through Affordable Care Act exchanges rather than paying the generally high price of Cobra premiums. A job loss qualifies as a life event that opens exchange insurance enrollment at any time and could allow a laid-off worker to qualify for tax credits to offset the cost of premiums, the Journal notes.
The Daily Caller (5/5, Hurtubise) reports that “Marilyn Tavenner, chief of Obamacare administrator the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, applauded the move in a statement and used the opportunity to plug the first open enrollment period’s number of sign-ups.” Tavenner said, “With over eight million enrollees, we know that the Marketplace is working and is providing consumers with additional choices and control over their health care.”
Also reporting this story are The Hill (5/5), the Congressional Quarterly (5/2, Adams, Subscription Publication), and the Newark (NJ) Star-Ledger (5/5).
CMS Creates Temporary Hardship Exemption For Some ACA Enrollees. The Hill (5/2, Viebeck) reports that “people who obtained health plans off the marketplaces after March 31 will not automatically face a penalty under the individual mandate, the Obama administration said Friday.” The piece notes that “in a bulletin, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) created a temporary hardship exemption for people who purchased coverage that was effective on Thursday of this week or beforehand.” Notably, this “essentially nullifies the month of April for the purposes of enforcing the mandate.”
Original Posting from Bulletin Healthcare.