House Examines Aggregation Rules for Small Business

December 11, 2013

pic-congress-hearingOn Wednesday, Dec. 4, the House Small Business Committee held a hearing on the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act’s business aggregation rules which treat separate businesses with common ownership or control as a single business when it comes to determining whether or not that business is considered a large employer and therefore subject to the mandate.

Because PPACA mandates employers with 50 or more employees to provide health insurance, the aggregation rule could force many seemingly small firms well under that threshold to comply with the mandate if their ownership structure is applicable to the aggregation rule.

During the hearing, Presiding Chair Chris Collins (R-N.Y.), who chairs the Subcommittee on Health and Technology, highlighted the massive confusion with the bill, and specifically the aggregation rules.

“Small businesses need to know exactly what they have to do to comply with the health care law, and what it is going to cost,” said Chairman Collins. “Even at this late date, too many small businesses still do not have those facts. In particular, the business aggregation rules cause uncertainty among small businesses. The rules can be complicated and confusing, and small businesses need better answers and they need them quickly.”

While the aggregation rule may not impact a large number of small businesses, it does raise huge problems for those it does. As with nearly everything in the ACA, the calculations are complex, and many small businesses will be caught unaware that a distinctly separate business run by a spouse or other family member could trigger these rules.

Please click here for more on the hearing.