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Federal regulators on Wednesday released model notices that employers can provide to employees to satisfy a federal health care reform law requirement that employees be notified about the availability of public health insurance exchanges.
Among other things, the notices from the U.S. Department of Labor — one for employers who offer a health plan to some or all employees, and one for employers who do not offer a health plan — explain how exchanges will operate, and that certain conditions will have to be satisfied for employees to obtain federal premium subsidies to purchase exchange-provided coverage.
Much to the relief of employers, they will not have to provide contact information for the exchanges. Instead, they can give a link in the notice to a Department of Health and Human Services website, www.healthcare.gov, that has such information.
“That is very good news,” said Rich Stover, a principal with Buck Consultants L.L.C. in Secaucus, N.J. Employers had been concerned about the possibility that they would have had to provide contact information for all 50 public exchanges.
Employers must distribute the notices, which are available at www.dol.gov/ebsa, prior to Oct. 1, 2013. Exchange policies will be effective Jan. 1, 2014.