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House moves to reduce ACA head-count requirements

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in Employment Law,Human Resources

The House of Representatives has approved legislation exempting some military-connected and emergency-services workers from counting toward the employee thresholds that trigger the play-or-pay mandate that forms the backbone of the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

The House of Representatives voted unanimously in favor of the Hire More Heroes Act of 2015 (H.R. 22), a bill that would exempt employees covered under the military’s retiree health care system or Veterans Administration health insurance from being counted toward the ACA’s employer-mandate thresholds.

The ACA requires employers with at least 100 full-time workers to provide health insurance starting this year. Employers with 50 to 100 full-time employees must meet the employer mandate effective Jan. 1, 2016.

The Protecting Volunteer Fire-fighters and Emergency Responders Act (H.R. 33) also unanimously passed the House. That bill would exempt fire departments from having to count volunteers when determining their ACA thresholds.

Both measures are expected to pass in the Senate, and President Obama is likely to sign them.

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