Department of Labor and the White House released the Administration's final rule on association health plans

News You Can User Industry Updates From Baldwin Krystyn Sherman Partners

Department of Labor (DOL) and the White House released the Administration’s final rule on association health plans (AHPs). 

The rule, which will impact millions of Americans’ ability to obtain affordable health coverage, is meant to make it easier for small businesses and individuals to form large group health plans.

Here are the three most significant impacts of the ruling:

  1. Those who would qualify for an AHP now include:
    • Small business owners
    • Employees of small businesses
    • Family members of working owners and employees
  2. In addition to industry AHPs, an AHP can now also form based on geography (common state, city, county, or a metropolitan area across state lines) if certain requirements are met.
  3. Small businesses that pool together can be underwritten at the large group level and avoid small group Affordable Care Act (ACA) rules.

Important dates you need to know:

  • September 1, 2018 – All new or existing associations may establish a fully insured AHP
  • January 1, 2019 – Existing associations that sponsored an AHP can establish a self-funded AHP
  • April 1, 2019 – All other new or existing associations may establish a self-funded AHP

The AHP rule does not preempt state laws, so states may continue to regulate AHPs as multiple employer welfare arrangements, whether fully insured or self-funded. We will continue to monitor changes at the state and local levels.

>>> Click here to read more about the final rule.

If you have any questions, please contact your BKS representative. 

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