May 30, 2010 / Law Alert

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act: Dilemmas Facing Employers Sponsoring Group Health Plans

What plan-related changes are required by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act? When must these changes be implemented? Will these changes raise costs? What penalties and fees might my company face for noncompliance?

Many employers sponsoring group health plans are asking these questions following the enactment of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA). The changes required by PPACA are coming in waves. Some provisions, such as the small employer health insurance credit and the early retiree reinsurance program, require immediate action. Other provisions, such as the non-discrimination requirements and cost-sharing limits, have later effective dates. Unfortunately, PPACA does not include step-by-step instructions to guide employers through these different phases of health care reform. Consequently, employers are turning to professionals to help analyze how PPACA affects their plans and formulate a strategy to comply with these requirements.