Industry News | February 11, 2014

NRA Issues Statement on ACA Employer Mandate Final Rule

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The National Restaurant Association (NRA) thanked the Obama administration for extending transition relief to some employers impacted by the Affordable Care Act. The U.S. Department of Treasury announced that employers with 50 to 99 employees will be given until January 2016 to comply with the ACA’s employer mandate of providing health insurance or face penalties.

The National Restaurant Association also reiterated its concern regarding Treasury’s proposed employer reporting requirements, and called on Congress to make much-needed changes in the law to benefit employers and employees.

"We thank the Treasury Department for working with us and the Employers for Flexibility in Health Care Coalition to provide flexibility in the rule for employers with variable hour workforces. The permanent treatment of the look back measurement method and affordability safe harbors for employers are especially helpful,” said Dawn Sweeney, president and CEO of the National Restaurant Association.

“The rule also provides a phase-in for the smallest employers who are subject to the employer responsibility provision of the law. For those employers with 100 employees or more, they must offer coverage to at least 70 percent of their full-time employees in 2015 to avoid penalties.

“We await and continue to be concerned about the yet to be finalized employer reporting requirements. The day to day reporting rules could contain significant compliance costs to restaurants across the country.  As restaurants nationwide struggle with ACA implementation, there remain challenges that now only Congress can address. We ask Congress to come together in a bipartisan manner to better align the definition of a full-time employee with current business practices, eliminate the duplicative automatic enrollment provision, and simplify the determination of a small business under the law.”  

The NRA has provided comments and met with Administration officials throughout the ACA’s regulatory process, and was instrumental in the Obama Administration’s July 2013 decision to originally provide transition relief for the ACA’s employer-mandate penalties and some reporting requirements until 2015.