There are going to be a LOT of 49 employee businesses out there, some of which are 55 or 59 employee companies now, if you get my drift. ;-)
Gawd this is going to get ugly.
They’ll move the goalposts just as soon as it suits them. When the rule of law is dead, the rule of whim is what you’ll get.
I spent 2 hours on the phone with my company's insurance broker on Friday. She said to really make sure the govt doesn't look closely at you, bring that count down to 48, and do it soon. If you suddenly drop to 49 right before the new "accounting for employers" starts (which is March of this year, I think), they will be looking at you.
Also some interesting information, if you are under the 50 thresh hold, you do not have to offer insurance at all, but all of your employees will be required to have it in one form or another for year 2013, because when you file taxes in 2014 is when the tax/penalty will kick in if you (the individual) doesn't have insurance for the prior year.
Also, the "shall issue" policy doesn't kick in until Jan 2014.
It was quite the conversation, and a huge learning experience, that's for sure.
... and a lot of employees working 29-hour weeks.
Similar to the consequences of the minimum wage mandate enacted in the 1930’s. Automation became cost effective and machines replaced many low-skilled workers.
We know that there is a lot of cutting back on hours going on to get people below the threshold and avoid having to furnish insurance. I wonder what the possibilities are for breaking a big company into small units that employ 45 to 48 people in each unit to avoid the insurance threshold.