October 20, 2015
On Oct. 8, 2015, the Maryland Insurance Administration published Bulletin 15-27 regarding the definition of small employer in Maryland law which is “an employer that, during the preceding calendar year, employed an average of not more than 100 employees for plan years that begin on or after Jan. 1, 2016, or another number of employees or date as provided under federal law.” Since Maryland law has been drafted to be consistent with federal law, for plan years that begin on or after Jan. 1, 2016, small employers will be defined as those that employed an average of 50 or less employees during the preceding calendar year. This applies to health benefit plans sold on and off the SHOP Exchange and stand-alone dental contracts sold on the SHOP Exchange.
As background, PPACA included a provision to change the definition of small employer from 1-50 to 1-100 employees effective Jan. 1, 2016. On Oct. 1, 2015, the US Congress passed HR 1624, called the PACE Act. The PACE Act repeals the mandated small-group expansion from groups of up to 50 employees to groups of up to 100 employees. Thus, unless a state has expanded its definition of small employer, PPACA’s insurance mandates would not apply to employers in the 51-100 group in that state.
Bulletin 15-27 »