All Massachusetts residents must have health coverage according to the Massachusetts Health Care Reform Act. Residents who do not meet this requirement are subject to a tax penalty.  It is possible that you will have employees come to you at the end of the year who don't have health coverage and who will want to pick it up. However, because of Section 125 rules that allow GIC and Connector Authority (for non-GIC eligible employees in HR/CMS Agencies - Offline agencies have their own 125 plan for non-GIC eligible employees) benefits to be available on a pre-tax basis, employees cannot pick up coverage during the year unless one of the following circumstances is met:
  • The employee is a new hire.
  • It's the GIC's (GIC eligible employee only) annual enrollment or Connector Authority's open enrollment (non-GIC eligible employee only in HR/CMS Agencies) period.
  • The employee has lost health coverage elsewhere and can document this.

Please instruct employees looking for health coverage who have missed the enrollment periods:

They can go directly to health plans offered by the Connector Authority to get coverage. Let them know that they will need to pay for the coverage on a post tax basis.

Advise them that they can enroll in GIC benefits if GIC eligible during our annual enrollment period or for HR/CMS agencies and UMass, the Connector Authority if not GIC-eligible (Offline Agencies, refer non-GIC eligible employees to your own Section 125 plan) during the Connector's open enrollment period. Coverage for these benefits will be effective July 1.

This information provided by the Group Insurance Commission .