- Office of Governor Charlie Baker and Lt. Governor Karyn Polito
- Governor's Press Office
Media Contact for Governor Baker Announces One-Year Delay in Implementation of Costly ACA Provision
Brendan Moss, Press Secretary, Governor's Office
BOSTON — Today, the Division of Insurance issued a bulletin authorizing carriers in the large group market to renew existing plans for employers with 51-100 employees. Pursuant to a federal transition policy, issued in March of 2014, the state’s decision to permit renewals will delay the impact of the merged market rules and prevent significant premium increases for small and mid-sized employers.
“I am pleased to announce that this guidance will help mitigate substantial premium increases for many Massachusetts residents,” said Governor Charlie Baker. “Allowing employers with 51-100 employees to remain in the large group market will retain a level of rate predictability and plan flexibility for both employers and their employees.”
The federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act requires that, no later than January 1, 2016, a state’s small group market must be defined as groups of 1 to 100 eligible employees. This definitional change will result in a merging of the 1 to 50 Market with the 51 to 100 Market and will subject the 51-100 employer groups to the small group market rules.
The federal government issued a notice on March 5, 2014 outlining a transitional policy allowing employer groups of 51-100 to renew in the large group market at the state’s discretion. Recognizing the potential market disruption to 51-100 employers, Governor Baker wrote to the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) in April 2015 to request a permanent waiver from this provision. Consistent with the April request, the issuance of this bulletin today will provide predictability for at least a year for employers and employees, as well as for carriers, until CMS makes a more final decision regarding the Commonwealth’s request for a permanent waiver.