A number of our clients with fiscal year employee health plans are now considering their 2014- 2015 plan designs.
We have noted some confusion about the current effective date for the employer mandate rules of the Affordable Care Act that apply to so-called "over 50" groups.
The employer mandate rules become effective for covered employers on January 1, 2015, regardless of the plan year of the health plan in question.
Therefore, as a practical matter, until and unless the regulators provide additional transition guidance, covered employers with non-calendar year health plans must plan for (in a permissible way) the employer mandate rules before they finalize their 2014-2015 plan designs.
(Some employers believe – erroneously but understandably – that those rules become effective on the first day of their 2015-2016 years, which reflects a previously available transition rule not carried forward when the employer mandate was delayed.)
Please contact us if we can be of assistance with your ACA compliance efforts.