Midsized Employers Are Worried About Ongoing ACA Compliance Challenges

The Affordable Care Act and resulting ACA compliance challenges can be a tough labyrinth for employers to navigate. As an insurance agency focusing on group benefits management, Pontrelli, Timour & Associates understand the frustration of employers as they attempt to deal with the seemingly never-ending ACA compliance challenges. By focusing on compliance issues, business owners fail to do what they do best and really need to be doing – growing their bottom line. Luckily, PT Benefits can help your company overcome these difficulties, taking away unnecessary bureaucratic headaches.

Keeping Up With ACA Compliance Challenges

aca compliance challenges

Help with ACA Compliance Challenges

It’s hard to keep up with evolving regulations around the Affordable Care Act. As a result, employers are increasingly stressed about the volume of government regulation that often lead to fines and penalties for noncompliance. When it comes to senior level and C-suite executives at U.S. companies with 50-999 employees, two in five ranked the amount of government regulations as their top business concern in 2015. This is a significant spike when compared to previous years.

Business owners have less confidence in compliance with ACA regulations as compared to payroll tax laws and workforce regulations. When it comes to ACA compliance challenges, there are steps you can take to help your company avoid problems.

Three Basic ACA Compliance Steps That Can Help

  1. Seek expert help. Recognize that ACA compliance is not a one-time investment, but an ongoing journey. Trying to solve compliance challenges with only internal resources can sometimes end up costing more than working with an experienced Insurance Agency like PT Benefits.
  1. Take inventory of your current benefits plans and employee insurance offerings. Employing manual processes can increase the risk that critical information needed to deal with ACA compliance challenges is not being tracked. If you had trouble during your last ACA reporting cycle, you are likely to have trouble again. By working with PT Benefits, the manual processes are replaced by a well-oiled group benefits machine.
  1. Access quality ongoing service options. If getting a handle on the alphabet soup of regulations that go hand-in-hand with the Affordable Care Act, work with an experienced insurance agency that can provide ongoing service. There is no need to continue what seems to be an exercise in futility, By seeking the help of certified and trained ACA compliance experts, you not only can avoid penalties, you also can offer better employee benefits programs and improve employee morale.

PT Benefits Overcomes ACA Compliance Challenges

To learn more about how Pontrelli, Timour, & Associates can provide the help you need to overcome ACA compliance challenges, please pick up the phone and take the first step. By calling (626) 795-4138 and speaking with one of our group benefits managers, you can access the help you need today.

Does Your Company Know About The Affordable Care Act’s Employer Shared Responsibility Payment?

Under the Affordable Care Act, applicable large employers – those with 50 or more full-time employees, including full-time equivalent employees – are required to take some new actions. Applicable large employers (ALEs) particularly need to pay attention. ALEs are subject to the employer shared responsibility provisions. A goal of Pontrelli, Timour & Associates is to provide our clients and potential clients with the best information available about the employer shared responsibility provisions and all the requirements of the Affordable Care Act. After all, information is the power to chart the right course.

The Affordable Care Act’s Employer Shared Responsibility Payment

employer shared responsibility payment

Employer Shared Responsibility Payment

Whether an employer is an applicable larger employer in a particular calendar year depends on the size of the employer’s workforce in the preceding calendar year. This is a key distinction to remember. To be defined as an ALE for a particular calendar year, an employer must have had an average of at least 50 full-time employees (including full-time-equivalent employees) during the preceding calendar year. All types of employers can be ALEs, including tax-exempt organizations and government entities.

To prepare for 2016, if your organization is an applicable large employer, you need to keep track information each month in 2015, including the following:

  • Whether you offered full-time employees and their dependents minimum essential coverage that meets the minimum value requirements and is affordable
  • Whether your employees enrolled in the minimum essential coverage you offered

PT Benefits can help our clients keep track of this information by providing supporting guidance and information.

Your company needs to track this information because you could be subject to an employer shared responsibility payment if your organization falls into either of these circumstances:

  • You offered coverage to fewer than 70 percent of your full-time employees in 2015 while at least one full-time employee enrolled in coverage through the Health Insurance Marketplace and receives a premium tax credit. The 70 percent threshold is for 2015, after 2015 this increases to 95 percent.
  • You offered coverage to at least 70 percent of your full-time employees and their dependents in 2015, but at least one full-time employee receives a premium tax credit because coverage offered was not affordable, did not provide minimum value or the full-time employee was not offered coverage. After 2015, this threshold increases to 95 percent.

 Pontrelli, Timour & Associates Can Help

Pontrelli, Timour & Associates understands if these requirements and logistics seem complicated. We can help you understand your company’s designation and take the steps to remain in compliance with the Affordable Care Act. Naturally, our goal is to help your company avoid an employer shared responsibility payment. To learn more and access the help you need, please call the group insurance experts at PT Benefits at 626-795-4138.Employer Shared Responsibility Payment

Do You Know How PPACA Affects Employers With 50 Or More Full Time Equivalent Employees?

In a recent update released on the IRS.gov website, the Internal Revenue Service offered Affordable Care Act guidance for large employers with 50 or more full time equivalent employees. Since some of the provisions of ACA apply only to large employers, which are generally those with 50 or more equivalent employees working full-time, the goal of this guidance is to let large employers know about deadlines approaching and compliance requirements that need to be met. As a group benefits and insurance leader for companies across Southern California, Pontrelli, Timour & Associates, Inc. offers this synopsis of the main points covered by the IRS in the recent update.

Large Employers Under The Affordable Care Act

50 or more full time equivalent employees

50 or more full time equivalent employees

If you have 50 or more full-time equivalent employees, your company is considered as an applicable large employers or ALEs. Applicable large employers are subject to the employer shared responsibility provisions and the annual employer information return provisions. For example, in 2016 applicable large employers will have annual reporting responsibilities in relation to health insurance. These reporting responsibilities detail whether your company offers health insurance to your employees and what kind of health insurance was offered in 2015 to your full-time employees.

Regardless of size, all employers that provide self-insured health coverage must file an annual return reporting certain information for the employees and other individuals they cover. The first returns are due to be filed in 2016 for the year 2015. Such filings have now become an inherent part of business tax filings with the IRS.

100 Or More Full Time Equivalent Employees

Effective for calendar year 2015, applicable large employers with 100 or more full-time or full-time equivalent employees will be subject to the employer shared responsibility provision. The shared responsibility provision goes hand-in hand with the possibility of having to make a shared responsibility payment. Like a penalty, the shared responsibility payment applies to employers that do not offer adequate, affordable coverage to their full-time employees. As a result of not offering such coverage, if one or more of those employees get a premium tax credit, the shared responsibility payment will be triggered for ALEs with 100 or more full time equivalent employees.

50 Or More Full Time Equivalent Employees

As for the smaller ALEs with 50 or more full time equivalent employees, but less than 100, the employer shared responsibility provisions will be activated from 2015 to 2016. Given this change and potential penalties involved, calculating the number of employees becomes of paramount importance. Any employers that have close to 50 employees or whose workforce fluctuates throughout the year should consult with a benefits administration expert to figure out exactly what they need to stay in compliance.

Although the basic calculation seems simple, it can be particularly complex given the natural fluctuations of a large workforce on an annual basis. The IRS describes the calculation needed:

To determine its workforce size for a year an employer adds its total number of full-time employees for each month of the prior calendar year to the total number of full-time equivalent employees for each calendar month of the prior calendar year and divides that total number by 12.

The Challenge Of 50 Or More Full Time Equivalent Employees

Did you know that employers with more than 50 cannot purchase health insurance coverage for its employees through the Small Business Health Options Program? With the SHOP Marketplace off limits, it becomes even more for employers with 50 more full time equivalent employees to work with a groups benefits provider like Pontrelli, Timour & Associates, Inc. that can answer your questions, lower your costs and help your company stay in compliance. To learn more about how PT Benefits can help, please call us today at 626-795-4138 to speak with a member of our customer-centric team.

PT Benefits Addresses The Challenges Of Filing IRS Form 5500 Under ERISA Plans

Filing IRS Form 5500 under ERISA plans can be challenging. Pontrelli, Timour & Associates, Inc. needs to let our clients and potential clients know that ERISA (Employee Retirement Income Security Act) plans with 100 or more participants at the beginning of the plan year are required to file an IRS Form 5500. An ERISA financial audit may also be required. Smaller plans with less than 100 participants at the beginning of the plan year may be eligible to file IRS Form 5500-SF. Certain welfare benefit plans with less than 100 participants at the beginning of the plan year may be exempt from filing IRS Form 5500.

IRS Form 5500 Filing Challenges

irs form 5500

Importance of Filing IRS Form 5500

The IRS Form 5500 must be filled no later than 7 months (or up to 9 1/2 months with extensions) after the end of the plan year. As a result, the necessity for filing plans for 2014 is rapidly approaching. A two and one half month extension may be obtained by filing Form 5558 with the IRS. PT Benefits. Rather than filing such an extension, it is better to work with an experienced group benefits leader like PT Benefits to file such forms.

Did you know that the penalties can be up to $1,100 per day for failure or refusal to file an IRS Form 5500? If you discover that you have not filed all your Forms 5500, do not wait for the government to find you! Please take advantage of the Delinquent Filer Voluntary Compliance Program. PT Benefits can help. We are available to prepare your annual Form 5500 and Summary Annual Report.

Questions About IRS Form 5500

It is essential to know how to define a participant in such plans. The IRS Form 5500 instructions define “participant” for purposes of filing in a confusing manner, but PT Benefits can help. An individual becomes a participant covered under an employee welfare benefit plan when one of the following happens:

  1. The date designated by the plan as the date on which the individual begins participation in the plan;
  2. The date on which the individual becomes eligible under the plan for a benefit subject only to occurrence of the contingency for which the benefit is provided; or
  3. The date on which the individual makes a contribution to the plan, whether voluntary or mandatory.

PT Benefits understands how intimidating all of the bureaucracy of IRS filings and ERISA plans and PPACA can be for any company. What is essential is to stay in compliance and not make careless mistakes. As a group benefits leader and a qualified insurance broker, PT Benefits can help with IRS Form 5500. To learn more about ERISA filings, please call 626-795-4138 and speak to one of our brokers.

PT Benefits Explains Employer Shared Responsibility Reporting Requirements Under PPACA: Code Sections 6055 & 6056

PT Benefits wants our clients and potential clients to understand that there are two types of employer shared responsibility payments, also known as pay or play penalties, under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The first penalty under Internal Revenue Code (Code) Section 4980H(a) is the penalty for failure to offer health coverage.  Effective for plan years that began on or after January 1, 2015, a $2,000 annual penalty applies to a large employer that fails to offer at least 70 percent of its full-time employees (FTEs) health coverage. Employer Shared Responsibility Reporting Requirements mean serious business.

Penalties & Employer Shared Responsibility Reporting Requirements

Employer Shared Responsibility Reporting Requirements, PPACA

Employer Shared Responsibility Reporting Requirements

The second penalty under §4980H(b) is for the failure to offer coverage that is of minimum value and affordable. The Section 4980H(b) penalty is a $3,000 annual penalty assessed on a monthly basis, and applies to each FTE who is not offered minimum value affordable coverage by the large employer, goes to the Marketplace Exchange and receives an exchange subsidy for insurance he or she purchases through the Marketplace Exchange.  It is important to note that even if an employer offers coverage to 70 percent of its FTEs for 2015 and 95 percent of its FTEs for 2016 and beyond, the employer could still be subject to penalties under Section 4980H(b) if the coverage is unaffordable or does not provide minimum value.

What is even more troubling when it comes to Employer Shared Responsibility Reporting Requirements is that even if an employer meets the 70/95 percent threshold, it still faces the potential for the $3,000 Section 4980H(b) penalty for every FTE who is not offered coverage (i.e., the 30/5 percent safe harbor employees) if that employee receives an exchange subsidy for insurance he/she purchases through the Marketplace Exchange.

Code Section 6055 requires health insurance issuers and employers that sponsor self-insured health plans to report information concerning the type and period of coverage to the IRS and to the covered individuals.  Section 6055 reporting is intended to serve as verification that the individual has MEC for purposes of enforcing the ACA’s individual responsibility requirements.  Code Section 6056 requires large employers to provide information to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) about whether MEC is offered to their FTEs and their dependents. The IRS will determine whether an employer owes a shared responsibility payment under Code Section 4980H and whether an employee is eligible for a premium tax credit on a Marketplace Exchange will use this information.

Employer Shared Responsibility Reporting Requirements – 6055 & 6056

Employers with 50 or more FTEs use Forms 1094-C and 1095-C to report the information required under Code Sections 6055 and 6056.  Form 1094-C is used to report to the IRS summary information for the employer and to transmit the Forms 1095-C to the IRS.  Form 1095-C is used to report information about each applicable employee. If an employer provides coverage through an insured plan, part of Form 1095-C will be left blank.  The insurance company will separately report on MEC for those individuals enrolled in fully insured plan options.

Recognizing the burden of these Employer Shared Responsibility Reporting Requirements imposed on employers, the IRS has provided a simplified reporting method for large employers that make qualifying offers of coverage to FTEs, their spouse and their dependents for all 12 calendar months of the reporting year. A simplified alternative that allows the employer to report without identifying or specifying the number of FTEs is also available for employers that offered, for all 12 months of the calendar year, affordable health coverage under IRS safe harbors.

Help With Employer Shared Responsibility Reporting Requirements

PT Benefits believe that employers should review the draft reporting forms and instructions to familiarize themselves with the types of information that must be provided under these Employer Shared Responsibility Reporting Requirements.  If such forms and instructions are too complicated, PT Benefits will help our clients navigate this maze of PPACA bureaucracy. To learn more about how PT Benefits can help your company with Employer Shared Responsibility Reporting Requirements and whether your company qualifies for an IRS safe harbor, please call 626-795-4138 today.

Three Key Points For High Growth Companies To Consider About Employee Benefits Programs

As insurance brokers working with group benefit programs , Pontrelli, Timour & Associates understands the challenges facing high growth companies. If you are an owner or partner in a high growth company, you most likely experience change and the resulting business evolution on a regular basis. From expanding into new markets and developing your product lines and service offerings to finding the right talent and renovating office space, you have learned that to grow is to change. Without question, PPACA will present a new healthcare challenge for high growth companies in California.

ACA Challenges for High Growth Companies

high growth companies

High Growth Companies & ACA

Given the major changes in the past year with healthcare reform and the Affordable Care Act, the same evolution is true for a growing company’s  employee benefits strategy. Well before your company hits 50 full-time employees or equivalents, you need to be ready to act. The mandate was only delayed for one year.  Once you reach 50 employees, there are responsibilities that you will need to think through in order to help ensure the success of your company. With PT Benefits, you access insurance brokers that have both the skill set and expertise to work with your company as a growing firm.

As a full-service benefits program provider, we offer a host of services beyond just renewal numbers once a year. Given the complexities of the Affordable Care Act, we have become strategic advisors and business consultants for our clients. If you are a growing company and you are looking for an effective insurance broker, below are three key points you should take into consideration.

Three Key Points For High Growth Companies

Pontrelli, Timour & Associates recommends that you make sure you’re Employee Benefits Advisor can:

  1.  Provide Updates on ACA Compliance and Health Care Reform and Laws:  An advisor should provide consistent updates on regulations such as ERISA, HIPAA, FMLA as well as guidance on health care reform and Affordable Care Act Compliance.
  2. Develop an Employee Benefits Plan Built for the Future:  Are you planning to continue to grow and expand your business? If this is the case, do you have a plan in place? A Benefits Advisor should be able to help you develop a more strategic employee benefits plan that aims to achieve the goals of your organization in terms of growth and expansion.
  3. Help Establish an Employee Wellness Program: Consider implementing an employee wellness program to help reduce health care consumption at your organization.  A good wellness strategy can impact the bottom line by keeping your employees happy and working effectively. Nothing beats good health.

PT Benefits understands the growing pains of a successful company and it  can be stressful. By partnering with an experienced benefits advisor and insurance broker, you can both help ease some of that transitional pain while also being more prepared for the future growth of your firm. To learn more about how we can help smooth the growing pains for your successful business, please call PT Benefits at 626-795-4138.

Three Ways For Employers To Help Employees Understand Healthcare Policy In The 21st Century

With the onset of the Affordable Care Act changing the landscape of healthcare benefits and plans, employers need to help employees understand their company’s healthcare policy and the new options provided by the Affordable Care Act. From implementing any of the new changes to communicating new information about both regulations and options to employees, Pontrelli, Timour & Associates can help employers feel comfortable about taking such steps.

healthcare policy

Healthcare Policy in the 21st Century

Once you understand what needs to be communicated, you can come up with a workable and proactive plan of how to communicate this bevy of new information about your healthcare policy.  PT Benefits offers 3 ideas on how to help your employees with a dual goal of covering the informational bases of your new healthcare policy and creating common ground that raises morale.

3 Ways To Help Employees Understand Your Healthcare Policy:

1) An employer should make sure to share the “what” and “why” of their company’s healthcare strategy. If you’re changing your organization’s health benefits approach for 2014, communicate both the “what” and the “why” to employees. Such shifts in strategy and plans are very common among small to mid-sized companies, particularly nonprofits. You should help employees understand what impact the Affordable Care Act has on the plans you offer, including who is eligible for coverage. In addition to raising awareness, all employers are required to provide a notice about new coverage options with the health insurance exchanges.

2) Employers should develop a new plan for distributing resources about basic healthcare information. PT benefits can help you with such a plan based on our experience with other clients. Many employers are shifting how they offer benefits because of the Affordable Care Act. In many cases, this means is a shift toward consumer-driven health care or defined contribution. Both of these models require employees to take more control. Employees need access to resources and education about basic health care terms, and basic healthcare reform information. A good start is by answering the following questions:

Healthcare Policy Questions

  • Who can your employees call with questions?
  • How can healthcare experts like PT Benefits help? 
  • What resources should be provided to employees? 

3) In order to strengthen their bond with employees, employers need to reinforce the value of their health plans and the overall value of working for the company. Regardless of the type of health benefits you are providing, you obviously care about the health of your employees, but do your employees know this to be the case? If not, you should use communication about health reform as an opportunity to reinforce this principle in order to improve retention rates and create a sense of goodwill by raising company morale.

PT Benefits can support your efforts to help your employees understand your company’s healthcare policy. To learn about how we can make the Affordable Care Act easier for your company to navigate, please contact the professionals at Pontrelli, Timour & Associates by calling 626-795-4138 or fill out our handy contact form.

 

 

 

 

Colonial Life Survey Reveals Seven Top Benefits Plan Enrollment Mistakes Made By Employees

benefits plan enrollment mistakes, colonial life survey, employee healthcare

Colonial Life Employee Healthcare Survey

A new Colonial Life survey shows countless employees making benefits plan enrollment mistakes because they lack the willingness to educate themselves. They simply do not know or have a basic understanding of what is available to them. Colonial Life & Accident Insurance Company recently questioned nearly 400 employee benefits counselors about the top mistakes they see employees making during enrollment. As experts in benefits program administration and employee benefit plans, the principals at Pontrelli, Timour & Associates are not surprised by the results of the survey.

The number one mistake was how employees tend to assume they do not need certain benefits being offered without even discussing such options with a benefits professional. This all-too-common mistake was cited by 81 percent of survey respondents.

Benefits Plan Enrollment Mistakes

What PT Benefits find fascinating is how little the expertise of insurance brokers is taken advantage of by employees. It’s almost as if there is a fear that asking questions will have repercussions. From our perspective, there are no foolish questions if they are asked in a honest quest for understanding and knowledge.

Benefits Plan Enrollment Mistakes 2 to 5 were closely grouped in the rankings and all related to lack of information:

  1. Not reading the benefits information prior to enrollment — 69 percent.
  2. Not knowing what benefits they currently have and what they cost — 69  percent
  3. Forgetting to talk with their spouse about their family’s needs before the enrollment — 67 percent
  4. Assuming the cost of a new benefit is unaffordable without seeing any prices — 66 percent

A survey respondent describe his frustration with this lack of planning and foresight by employees when he said: “This is the one time you have to take control of how you want to provide for your family and yourself. Take time to talk with your spouse and understand how the benefits can really help your family.”

Benefits Plan Enrollment Mistakes 6 & 7 directly pertain to a failure to take advantage of educational resources available:

  1. Not attending group informational meetings — 58 percent
  2. Not taking time to understand the upcoming changes in their benefits plan — 50 percent

Personal knowledge can be translated into power, but so few employees seem willing to access such power to help themselves. Many employers give workers the opportunity to meet one-to-one with a benefits expert for a personalized counseling session.

Post-enrollment surveys by Colonial Life show 98 percent of employees who participated in a one-to-one session said it was important, and 97 percent said the session improved their understanding of the benefits being offered.

With the complexities presented by the Affordable Care Act, such past benefits enrollment mistakes are even more dangerous today. PT Benefits recommend that every small to mid-sized employer sit down with their employees and emphasize the importance of education and knowledge.

With ACA affecting everyone and the higher costs coming down the line, it is time for employees to take hold of the reins when it comes to benefits enrollment. If you have questions from the perspective of an employer or an employee about benefits enrollment, please call 866-782-9899 or fill out our handy contact form.

 

8 Affordable Care Act Predictions For 2014

When it comes to making expert predictions about the wide range effects of the Affordable Care Act in 2014, Pontrelli, Timour & Associates have the expertise needed to be right on target. As an employee benefits and insurance agency working with small to mid-sized businesses for over a decade in Pasadena, the principals at the agency have the knowledge to provide quality prognostications. The following 8 predictions are based on a balance of factual data combined with the insight of long-term experience.

8 Affordable Care Act Predictions For 2014

  1. Since the majority of carriers shifted the renewal dates of their clients to December 1, most business owners don’t have to take any direct action until then. As a result, the true brunt of the Affordable Care Act’s business fallout will hit hardest in the 4th quarter.
  2.  The biggest initial problems will be with individual solo policies as rates go up the benefits are reduced. The result is going to be a lot of angry people shaking their fists at healthcare reform and wondering why they ever wanted it in the first place.
  3.  Many uninformed business owners without an actual understanding of the laws will try to avoid the 50 employee mark of the Employer Mandate by shifting full-time employees to part-time. Such a shift is illegal, doesn’t work as an avoidance strategy because part-time employees are included in the Employer Mandate equation, and will result in many stories about the IRS and other government agencies cracking down on small business owners across the country for this violation.
  4. On account of the customercentric approach of PT Benefits, almost 100% of our clients early renewed and moved to December. In contrast, how many small to mid-sized companies with the huge corporate providers fell through the cracks of poor customer service. The immediate result when they have to renew early will be the tough initial options on account of a lack of concrete rate information. Anger over this outcome will result in a bevy of local negative ACA news stories in the first to second quarter of the year.
  5. affordable care act predictions

    Affordable Care Act Predictions

    Any employee or group that had a high deductible catastrophic PPO plan will most likely be paying double come their renewal in 2014. An example is a small restaurant owned by an older lady with such a plan. Her rate will double in terms of the costs because of the minimal coverage and deductible thresholds. In addition, the new extensive requirements for pediatric dental and vision, maternity, expanded non-institutional mental health benefits, contraceptives, breast pumps, lactate consultants, and the list goes on and on. Each state threw in their benefit requirements on top of the federal requirements, resulting in plans that simply cover so much more than is truly needed. Both the business owners and the employee are being hurt because the rates are skyrocketing. As a result, this woman’s rate at her restaurant will more than double because of these new requirements, perhaps even causing her to go out of business after years of serving food to her community.

  6.  The biggest losers in the financial chaos that is being wrought by the Affordable Care Act will be lower middle class to middle class Americans, the vast majority of the country stuck in the center. Healthcare reform really only affects high middle class to wealthy Americans as business owners, and most of them will be able to adapt. The bottom rung of the ladder – the homeless and the destitute – theoretically will be helped. But the middle will be hurt and hurt bad in 2014. And this middle is the heart of America.
  7.  Technology in the industry of benefits administration and insurance brokers traditionally has been very poor. In 2014, this is going to start to shift as a result of ACA and the need for more interactive websites to explain and evaluate the changes for existing clients and potential new clients. Mobile technology will be on the rise as well.
  8. Overall, the Great Panic Debate of 2013 will shift into more realistic discussions about how to be sustainable in 2014. How are insurance brokers going to make the changes work for their clients beyond the initial stage of denial. This is why the insurance brokerage team at Pontrelli, Timour & Associates is focused on finding the best possible ways to optimize the Affordable Care Act options and possibilities for all of our clients.

Help With The Affordable Care Act

If these Affordable Care Act predictions scare you, you are not alone. The perspective of the government on the Affordable Care Act is not the perspective of insurance professionals. If you are worried about how the Affordable Care Act will affect your business and your employees, please contact PT Benefits by calling 626-795-4138 for insurance solutions.

Raphy Timour Of PT Benefits Speaks For Business Owners In Pasadena Now Article On The Affordable Care Act (ACA)

As a co-founder of Pontrelli, Timour & Associates and a respected expert on the Affordable Care Act, Raphy Timour was interviewed by Pasadena Now about how ACA is affecting small to mid-sized business owners and their employees across Pasadena. Since so many business owners are trapped in the maze of the healthcare requirements, mandates and restrictions, Raphy Timour is stepping up to be the voice of the small to mid-sized business owner in trouble. The problem with the Affordable Care Act is that the good man in the middle is being squeezed once again. It is both a honor and an opportunity for Pasadena Now to give Raphy Timour a platform from which to help educate business owners who truly need help and support

A Voice Speaking For The ACA Embattled Business

In the Pasadena Now article, Raphy Timour describes the difficulties faced by one of the clients of PT Benefits:

aca, pasadena now

ACA Going Off The Rails

“We do the benefits for a small local restaurant and the owner is a woman in her early 60’s. She chose not to early renew. Over the years, to help offset the rising cost of healthcare, she moved to a higher deductible PPO plan. Although the out-of-pocket costs were greater, she chose to pay less each month in premiums. Her group benefits plan renews in March 2014 and her individual rate is going from $532 a month to $925 a month! Yes, her benefits are more extensive, but nowhere near justifying a 74% increase over last year. Why should a woman in her 60’s with adult children be required to have a plan that covers maternity and pediatric dental and vision?”

Why should business owners be penalized who actually have been doing the right thing for years? Why should they be hurt just so others can be helped? Does it seem fair that so many small to mid-sized business owners across not only Pasadena and Southern California, but across the entire country are being slammed so hard or are going to be slammed so hard in their pocketbooks by the Affordable Care Act? Why is Affordable even in the name of the act if the actual results turn out to be the exact opposite of this word – more expensive and more costly?

A Voice Needed Come ACA December Renewals

Since most business clients early renewed, they won’t be facing the real financial challenges of the Affordable Care Act until December. Come December, however, Raphy warns in the Pasadena Now article that “The fourth quarter is going to be a real wake-up call for most employers. There are going to be a lot of shocked and surprised people.” The goal of Pontrelli, Timour & Associates is to help our clients make this tough transition as easily as possible while raising awareness of these challenges in our community in general. To learn more about how ACA might affect your business, please call 626-795-4138 to reach Pontrelli, Timour & Associates and get the help your company truly needs.