Cancelling Employees Healthcare
This week has been bad news for me from my HR Director.
She has been dealing with the fallout from Obamacare.
So a little background. Most of the company's employees are in Germany but also German so this doesnt affect them. However the portion of the company in the USA is considered a small business.
Although Obama promised that we could keep our insurance and doctors, it seems that BCBS seemed to think otherwise and sent us the letter last month that our insurance plan was cancelled.
So, the company was forced into the insurance exchange for the USA employees. Well, it seems there are some "catches". First catch, no employee who makes over $50K is eligible for anything over the "bronze" (lowest level) of insurance. For this level, insurance has went from $600/month with BCBS (with a decent plan) to $1400 for almost no coverage.
So, now we are working with an insurance broker to find us something. His recommendations: drop all health coverage for employees. We are exempt from penalties for FY2014 and they will be small for FY2015. After that, he said it is cheaper to pay the penalties than offer insurance.
We had the idea of increasing salary by $600 a month to allow them to purchase the same amount we were paying for last year. The broker recommended against this because then FICA, unemployment, workers comp, etc are all tied to this.
Basically, the advice that we were given is that he would find individual plans for the upper people and then if the employees want the insurance they can pay for that or go on the individual health exchange.
Basically, we are being told as a business to tell the employees "screw you" and worry about this yourself.
All of our tax/insurance advisers are telling us to have all employees under $50K as part time (29 hours and under) and then offer no insurance. Anyone making under $25/hr they are saying should have hours cut by 11hrs/week with no possibility of overtime. We are being told it is cheaper to hire extra part time people.
Over $50K it doesnt seem to matter because that is the "threshold" where the business/individual cant avoid being screwed.
This is just amazing..
Twice a week? 14 times a month?
Many of the truths that we cling to depend on our point of view.