Get free help preparing your taxes from AARP Foundation Tax-Aide. Find a location



learning centers

Get smart strategies for managing health conditions.


Heart Disease


Most Popular


The Health Care Law & You

What the Health Care Law Means for Small Business Employees

En español l There’s a lot to learn about the health care law. If you have insurance, the law has new benefits and protections so you have the confidence you’re in control of your health care. If you don’t have insurance, there’s a new way to get health insurance for you and your family. You’ll be able to get insurance where you work, or if your employer doesn’t offer health insurance, you can still get coverage in the Health Insurance Marketplace.

Creates a new way to shop for health insurance  

  • The Health Insurance Marketplace makes it easier to compare health plans. All plans available in the Health Insurance Marketplace in your state are listed in one place, so you can make apples-to-apples comparisons of benefits and prices. Plans must describe what’s included in simple language, so there’s no guesswork about what’s covered. You can get your questions answered about finding a plan or completing the application in person, by phone or online.
  • Health plans must cover the essentials. Plans offered in the Health Insurance Marketplace are required to cover important benefits such as doctor visits, hospitalization, emergency care, prescriptions, preventive care and more.
  • Everyone needs coverage. Starting in 2014, you are required to have health coverage. If you don’t, you may have to pay a penalty. There are some exceptions, including people with a very low income.

If your employer offers health insurance

  • Your small business employer will select a health insurance plan and decide how much it will contribute to the cost of your monthly premiums.
  • At first, most employers can offer only one plan, but starting in 2015 your employer will be able to select multiple plans you can choose from.
  • You can reject the coverage offered by your employer only if the cost of your premiums in the employer’s plan is more than 9.5 percent of your income. In that case, you would be able to purchase your insurance through the individual Health Insurance Marketplace.

If your employer does not offer health insurance

  • You can shop for coverage in the individual Health Insurance Marketplace. Depending on your income, you may be able to get financial help with your premiums and other costs. When you apply for insurance, the marketplace will determine what financial help you can get.

It’s time to learn more about the health care law. Go to

Updated February 2014

Topic Alerts

You can get weekly email alerts on the topics below. Just click “Follow.”

Manage Alerts


Please wait...

progress bar, please wait

Tell Us WhatYou Think

Please leave your comment below.

Discounts & Benefits

From companies that meet the high standards of service and quality set by AARP.

Walgreens 1 discount membership aarp

Members get exclusive points offers from Walgreens, Duane Reade and

member benefit aarp hear usa

Members can save 20% on hearing aids with the AARP® Hearing Care Program provided by HearUSA.

AARP membership discount Man trying on eyeglasses at optometrists smiling

Members save up to 60% on eye exams and 30% on glasses at LensCrafters.

Member Benefits

Join or renew today! AARP members receive exclusive member benefits & affect social change.