Only two health insurance carriers in Westchester have opted to participate in New York’s SHOP (Small Business Health Option Program) exchange, and you’ve probably only heard of one of them...
So should your small business be one of the 450,000 statewide expected to purchase group coverage on the health exchange? Is SHOP right for you?
SHOP offers value to small business, Schutzer noted. Employers get a single monthly bill and send one check back to the exchange, which is responsible for sending payment to the insurers.
But the most attractive reason to shop on SHOP is the chance to put money in your pocket through health care tax credits of up to 35 percent (25 percent for tax-exempt entities) that offer insurance to employees. However, to be eligible for the Small Business Health Care Tax Credit
, businesses are required to have fewer than 25 full-time equivalent employees, pay at least 50 percent of employee premiums, and employee salaries have to average $50,000 a year or less.
In Westchester, that isn’t going to be a scenario that plays out for a large number of businesses. But follow our experts’ advice: Work with a tax advisor to determine your tax credit eligibility.