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President Obama Signs PACE Act

Last Friday, BenefitMall issued a legislative alert stating that the Protecting Affordable Coverage for Employees (PACE) Act had passed both the House and Senate and was sent to President Obama for signature. The House of Representatives passed H.R. 1624 on September 28 through voice vote and the Senate, through unanimous consent, passed the legislation on October 1. We are pleased to share that President Obama has now signed this legislation into law.

As we have previously communicated, the Act repeals the mandated small-group expansion that was to go in to effect on January 1, 2016. States now have the flexibility to determine the size of their small-group market instead of being forced into the national standard.
                              
A number of states had previously modified their own state legislation to mirror the ACA whereby large group would be defined as 100 employees. For these states, they need to pass new legislation, if they desire, to revert back to the original definition of 50 employees. In short order, we expect all states to quickly decide their own definition of small group now that each state has the ability to set their own definition as long as it is no less than 50 and no more than 100.

The majority of states and carriers were in favor of the legislation despite recognizing the chaos it may cause. All stakeholders are quickly evaluating their options and as we hear of decisions being made by the states, we will continue to keep you updated.

In the meantime, please visit www.benefitmall.com or www.healthcareexchange.com for many of BenefitMall’s health care reform related resources.