Now, there's a new, simpler way to shop for health coverage
Are you a small-business owner?
The health care law changes how you shop for health coverage. If you’re a small-business owner with 50 or fewer employees you can join with other small businesses in your state to get health insurance for your employees. For the first time, you will have many of the same options that have only been available to larger companies.
Starting October 1, 2013, you can shop for a health insurance plan for your employees using the online Health Insurance Marketplace in your state. Through its Small Business Health Options Program (called SHOP) you will be able to compare plans, benefits and costs, and choose what plan to offer to your employees. Then, your employees can simply go online and sign up – reducing your paperwork and administrative costs.
You may be able to get a tax credit to help make the cost of covering your employees more affordable. And help is available online, by phone or in person.
Small businesses with fewer than 50 full-time employees are not required to offer health insurance and face no penalties.
Do you work for a small business?
Check with your employer to see if they plan on offering health coverage.
If your employer plans to offer health
All the information you need will be in one place: the small business employee section of the Health Insurance Marketplace. You’ll have access to the health plan selected by your employer. All you need to do is go online and sign up.
If your employer does not offer health coverage …
You’ll be able to use the individual Health Insurance Marketplace to find a health plan that works for you and your family. And, depending on your income, you may be able to get help covering the costs.