While many parts of the newly affirmed Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act has already taken effect, and employers are focusing on meeting the new Acts requirements, some of the major provisions will not start until 2013 or 2014. January 2013 will see the implementation of the requirement for all employers to report the value of health benefits on employee’s W-2 forms. The amount reported will need to include the portion paid by both employer and employee. The IRS has assured that the reporting of these costs will not make the amounts become taxable. The reporting is simply information for employees when comparing the cost of health care coverage.
Employers subject to the Act (those with at least 50 full-time employees) are required to comply with all provisions eventually but that compliance is divided into two phases: compliance for large employers (at least 250 W-2s) and that for the remaining employers. Large employers must comply with the reporting provision beginning in 2012 while small employers need not comply with the provision until tax year 2013 W-2 forms. This provision will be only one of a series of future provisions required by the health care reform law and will only impact employers more as time passes and new provisions take effect.