Employee Exchange Notice
Under Health Care Reform, employers are required to provide current employees and new hires a notice explaining Exchanges. On May 8, 2013 the Department of Labor (DOL) issued Technical Release 2013-2 and two model notices. The Technical Release also provides an updated COBRA notice that includes a description of Exchange coverage. The Technical Release provides temporary guidance that employers may rely upon until further guidance is issued.
Employers are required to provide the notice to all employees regardless of full or part time status or plan eligibility enrollment. Employers must provide the notice to current employees by October 1, 2013, and upon hire for new employees after October 1, 2013. Starting January 1, 2014 employers will have up to 14 days from the date of hire to provide the notice to new employees. The notice must be provided by first class mail, or electronically if current DOL requirements for electronic delivery are met (namely, use of electronic media is an integral part of the employee's job or the employee actively elects to receive the notice electronically).
A PDF copy of the notice for employers who do not offer coverage is available here and the modifiable Microsoft Word version here. A PDF copy of the notice for employers who offer coverage to some or all employees is available here and the modifiable Microsoft Word version here.
Under COBRA, a group health plan must give a qualified beneficiary a notice describing COBRA election rights after the individual experiences a qualified event. The DOL has revised the model COBRA notice to include a description of the Exchange coverage options. The revised notice can be found here. Use of the appropriately completed model notice will be deemed good faith compliance.
American Fidelity Assurance Company does not provide tax or legal advice.