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Should Businesses Drop Healthcare Under Obamacare?

By Andrew Lu | Last updated on

The math is pretty simple for businesses and Obamacare.

Under Obamacare (the Affordable Care Act upheld Thursday by the Supreme Court), impacted businesses can either continue their employees under their current healthcare plan, or employers can drop healthcare and face the monetary penalties set in the law.

It's not unheard of for businesses to spend $10,000+ dollars per employee each year on health insurance premiums. The penalty for a business not providing health insurance under Obamacare? $2,000 per employee each year. We're not mathematicians, but which direction would J.P. Morgan go?

Right now, there is no obligation for employers to provide health insurance at all. And they don't face a penalty should they choose not to give their employees insurance.

However, many businesses do provide health insurance as that's simply accepted good business practice. If you don't provide health insurance, good candidates will go to your competitors who do. Besides competing for workers, employers can also feel good about themselves for benefiting employees and this is handy for maintaining goodwill.

But with Obamacare, businesses can drop their health insurance plans and feel no guilt that their workforce will become uninsured. Instead, employees can just sign up for low-cost, government subsidized, healthcare plans. To combat workers fleeing to competitors, businesses can increase employee salaries by a portion of what they save in not having to pay health insurance premiums.

An unintended effect of Obamacare on business may be that companies will start doing away with health insurance coverage for employees. If you have questions about your requirements under the new law, you may want to contact an employment attorney.

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