Employers face new fees under health care reform

Employee benefits attorney Brandon Long was featured in a Q&A with The Oklahoman discussing the transitional reinsurance program under the Affordable Care Act, commonly referred to as health care reform. The program requires certain additional fees from health insurance issuers and self-insured medical plans.

“According to proposed rules that were issued a few months ago, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) currently estimates the fee will be $63 times the number of covered lives, or $63,000 for an employer with a self-insured medical plan with 1,000 covered lives,” Long said. “Additional fees will be due for 2015 and 2016.”

These fees were created to help offset the risk associated with new and previously uninsured enrollees that are expected as the number of individuals with health insurance coverage increases, particularly in the individual market, with premium tax credits and other insurance reforms taking effect next year, he said.

Long is a shareholder with McAfee & Taft and currently serves as leader of the firm’s Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation Group, overseeing one of the Southwest’s largest and most experienced teams of employee benefits lawyers.