WASHINGTON — With enrollment in our nation’s new health care system quickly approaching, more than 800,000 small businesses across Michigan are preparing and educating themselves about the impact of the sweeping new health care reform law enacted by Congress last year. Today, in advance of the open enrollment period beginning October 1, The National Association for the Self-Employed, the nation’s leading advocate and resource for the self-employed and micro-businesses released a key guide, the Affordable Care Act in Brief, to educate and help assist Michigan’s small business community during this transition period.
“While the new law may provide better and more comprehensive health coverage for many of Michigan’s smallest businesses, it will come at a significant cost,” said Katie Vlietstra, NASE’s director of government affairs.
The Affordable Care Act in Brief highlights how the new health care law will impact 22 million self-employed and micro-businesses nationwide, including the over 800,000 in Michigan. It outlines the pros and cons of health care coverage small businesses must consider while underlining the lack of information in the public domain about the health care law, the Exchanges and details of enrollment requirements.
MICHIGAN SMALL BUSINESS FACTS:
- 667,228 self-employed in Michigan in 2011
- 133,336 micro-businesses in Michigan (businesses with fewer than 10 employees) in 2010
- $27 million in annual revenue for the self-employed in 2011
- $13 million in annual revenue for micro-business in 2010
A keystone of the ACA is the requirement that new health marketplaces, known as an exchange, be set up in every state to offer health coverage options to individuals, families and small businesses to meet this new health coverage requirement. The Exchanges will be offered and operated either by a state, a partnership between the state and the Federal Government, or just the Federal Government for those in states who have opted out and will default to the Federal Exchange.
Beginning on Jan. 14, 2014, Americans will be required to purchase health care coverage or pay a penalty. Enrollment in the Exchanges will open on Oct. 1. In addition to the NASE’s small business health resource center, the government recently re-launched a new website portal for the public to learn more about the new health care law and it’s Exchanges: HealthCare.gov.