The DOL recently extended the expiration date on its model Exchange notices under the ACA through May 31, 2020. Despite the updated expiration date, the content of the model notices has not substantively changed. The expiration date is included largely as an administrative function for the DOL and does not impact the notices’ applicability or an employer’s ability to use them. The ACA requires employers to provide the exchange notice to all new hires at the time of hiring. There is no annual requirement to provide the notice to existing employees nor is there a fine or penalty for failing to provide the notice. This ACA Compliance Bulletin provides more information on this development.
The 2015 Exchange open enrollment period ended on Feb. 15, 2015. However, new special enrollment periods are available for a limited time for some individuals. Individuals who were unaware of or didn’t understand the individual mandate penalty may enroll from March 15 to April 30, 2015. In line individuals could enroll until Feb. 22.
To address the Exchanges’ enrollment problems, CMS is making subsidies available in 2014 for certain individuals who were unable to enroll through an Exchange.
Transition relief is available for individuals:
Not enrolled in coverage continuously since Jan. 1, 2014; or
On Feb. 27, 2014, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued guidance expanding the availability of Exchange subsidies in 2014. If certain conditions are met, this guidance makes subsidies available for individuals who were unable to enroll in a QHP through the Exchange due to technical difficulties with Exchange functions. This Exchange Subsidy Availability Expanded in 2014 Due to Technical Difficulties Health Care Reform bulletin provides an overview.