ObamaCare and Small Business

ObamaCare (Affordable Care Act or ACA) enacted comprehensive health insurance reforms designed to ensure Americans have access to quality, affordable health insurance. Learn what the law means for small businesses and self-employed business owners.

Beginning in 2015, the Affordable Care Act provides for new information reporting by employers of any size that sponsor self-insured plans. (Section 6055 rules). Separate reporting requirements apply to those employers that have 50 or more full time or full-time equivalent employees. (Section 6056 rules). Under Section 6055 rules, self-funded employers, issuers, and other parties that provide health coverage must submit new reports to the IRS detailing information for each covered individual. The first of these reports must be filed in early 2016.


How does ObamaCare effect me as a small business owner?

  • Do I have to provide insurance to my employees?

    Not if you have 50 or fewer full-time equivalent (FTE) employees. You can choose to offer insurance through the SHOP Marketplace or any other source. But you don’t have to, and you don’t face a penalty if you don’t.

    If you have 50 or more employees, learn about the Employer Shared Responsibility Payment.

  • Can I cover myself through a SHOP plan I offer my employees?


  • If my only employee is my spouse or a family member, can I use the SHOP Marketplace to offer coverage to us both?

    Generally no. Spouses and family members aren’t included when determining if your business is eligible to offer SHOP coverage. To be eligible for SHOP you must have between 1 and 50 full-time equivalent employees who aren’t business owners, partners, or family members.

  • Can I offer dental coverage to my employees through the SHOP Marketplace?

    Yes. You can choose to offer dental coverage to employees, but you don’t have to. Offering dental coverage may be particularly important if you’re offering dependent coverage and the medical plan or plans you’re offering don’t include pediatric dental benefits.

    You’ll have the option to choose a dental plan when you fill out your SHOP application.

    Learn more about Health and Dental Plans in the SHOP Marketplace please see below in our document library.

  • Can my employees join my plan after the initial enrollment period?

    Yes, but only if they qualify for a Special Enrollment Period due to a life change like having a baby, adopting a child, or getting married. Learn more about buying SHOP coverage outside the initial enrollment period by viewing in our document library below.

Here are some documents we have gathered concerning small business and ObomaCare: