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The Obamacare Delays and the Massachusetts "Fair Share" Employer Mandate: Now What?

As we reported in July 3rd post, the Obama administration has decided to delay implementation of the “employer shared responsibility” mandate for in order to afford employers more time to prepare for compliance.  Many of our clients doing business in Massachusetts are wondering, given this delay, whether and for how long the “Fair Share” employer mandate will continue to apply.  The Fair Share law, M.G.L. c. 149, § 188, requires employers in Massachusetts to either provide compliant coverage to employees or pay a penalty of $295 per employee per year. 

We will know more once the Commonwealth completes its 2014 budget process (now in the final stages).  The current version of the budget, (H 3538). which was approved by the Massachusetts Legislature earlier this week, includes a provision repealing the employer Fair Share requirements effective July 1, 2013; this version is now awaiting Governor Patrick’s review and signature.  Although Governor Patrick has expressed support of the July 1, 2013 repeal, it is unclear whether he will change course given the Obamacare delay. 

For more information on the Fair Share Law and the Massachusetts budget process, please see our advisories here and here

We will keep our readers posted as these issues develop. 

©1994-2020 Mintz, Levin, Cohn, Ferris, Glovsky and Popeo, P.C. All Rights Reserved.National Law Review, Volume III, Number 186

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About this Author

Patricia Moran, Employment, Attorney, Mintz Levin, Law firm
Of Counsel

Patricia Moran is an experienced employee benefits attorney who advises clients on a broad variety of employee benefit plan matters, including:

  • Health and welfare matters, including the Affordable Care Act, fringe benefits, cafeteria plans, COBRA, wellness, mental health parity, on-site clinics, health savings accounts, and telemedicine.
  • Retirement plan matters, including nondiscrimination testing, plan document design, service provider contract review and negotiation, and correction of errors.
  • ...
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