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Learn about the Employer Medical Assistance Contribution (EMAC)

Each employer subject to unemployment insurance is also subject to Employer Medical Assistance Contribution (EMAC) reporting requirements. EMAC is used to help fund health insurance programs in the Commonwealth.

Contributions

Employers must pay contributions on the first $15,000 of each employee's wages paid during the 2018 calendar year. The amount of contributions due (or liability) is derived by multiplying these wages by an assigned rate. The result is the amount that must be paid as an employer medical assistance contribution (EMAC).

When a quarterly contribution report is not filed to the Department of Unemployment Assistance (DUA) through UI Online as required, the amount of liability cannot be established and therefore will be estimated.

Exemptions

Employers are not liable for payment of EMAC in a quarter whenever the average employee count is fewer than six (because wages are exempt for that quarter).

Also, employers are exempt when they meet the definition of "newly subject ". That is, an employer is not liable for payment of EMAC for up to 3 years after first becoming subject to the unemployment insurance law.

EMAC rates effective January 1, 2018

Year 1, 2, and 3: New employers that become subject to EMAC or UHI previously will be exempt for the first 3 years
Year 4: Employers in their 4th year of being subject to EMAC previously will an pay an EMAC rate of 0.18% (0.0018)
Year 5: Employers in their 5th year of being subject to EMAC previously will pay an EMAC rate of 0.36% (0.0036)
Year 6 and more: Employers in their 6th year or more of being subject to UHI previously will pay an EMAC rate of 0.51% (0.0051)

Employers that paid EMAC rate of 0.24% or 0.34% in 2017 will pay a rate of 0.51% for calendar year 2018, except for those meeting exempt or reduced rate criteria. Employers operating within 3 years following the “Newly Subject” status as of MGL 151A, pay at rates of 0.18% and 0.36% respectively.

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