A healthier workplace is more productive and keeps you ahead of your competition. Providing health insurance for your employees not only improves their quality of life, but also gives you more financial stability. But we know that getting health insurance has not always been easy. Today, it is.
Federal tax credits that pay for up to half of your contribution to your employees’ premiums are now available for many small business owners and nonprofits through the Small Business Health Options Program, also called the SHOP Marketplace. The SHOP Marketplace is a section of the new online shopping website called the Health Insurance Marketplace.
How can I purchase insurance for my employees?
If you are a small business owner or nonprofit leader in Illinois, you can access the SHOP Marketplace directly from this site, where you can compare and buy quality health insurance for your employees.
You can talk to someone near you for free about your employee coverage options. There are people available to meet face-to-face or over the phone. You can start here to find:
- Navigators: Specially trained counselors that are available to help answer your questions and find coverage for your business. You can click here to find a Navigator or call (866) 311-1119.
- Agent or Broker: Licensed professionals who are registered with the Marketplace and can help recommend specific health insurance plans for your business. Visit the Get Help page for links to find agents and brokers near you.
What is the Federal Small Business Health Care Tax Credit and who is eligible?
If you are a small business owner, you may qualify for the federal Small Business Health Care Tax Credit to help you pay for the cost of your employees’ health insurance. The tax credit is worth up to half of your contribution toward employees’ premium costs. This is the amount you pay every month for their health insurance plans.
You may qualify for Federal Small Business Health Care Tax Credit if you have fewer than 25 full-time equivalent employees each making an average of about $50,000 a year or less.
Here’s an example of how the tax credit works:
- Number of full-time employees: 10
- Wages: $250,000 total or $25,000 per employee
- Employer contribution to employee premiums: $70,000
- Tax credit amount: $35,000 (50 percent of employer’s premium contribution)
If you are a small business owner, beginning in January, 2014, the Small Business Health Care Tax Credit will only be available if you buy health insurance through the SHOP Marketplace.
If you are the leader of a nonprofit, you will need to apply through the SHOP Marketplace for a 35 percent discount from your FICA tax, which can help pay for your employees’ health insurance.
Have questions about the SHOP Marketplace for your business with 50 employees or less? Call 1-800-706-7893 Monday through Friday from 8am to 6pm.