Foodservice Equipment Reports

Affordable Care Act: January 2015 Is Key Time To Track Data

The Affordable Care Act mandates employers with 100 or more full-time-equivalent employees to offer healthcare coverage to full-time employees in 2015.

While foodservice operators and other businesses with 50-99 full-time employees have until 2016 to offer coverage, they must start tracking healthcare-coverage-related employee data in January 2015 for reports that must be submitted to the Internal Revenue Service in early ’16.

Most attention has focused on employer-mandate regulations, but the back-end regulations on detailed data reporting are critical to follow. Starting in January, employers with 50 or more full-time employees must begin to track data on who they offered coverage to by calendar month and Social Security number. Much of the data required to generate these reports is found in separate, unconnected systems, including payroll records, scheduling software and benefits information. In addition, the reports must be generated on a month-by-month basis, which doesn’t easily square with businesses that pay employees on a weekly schedule and might require internal programming for payroll and computer systems.

Draft forms and specifications explaining the necessary programming systems should be available from the IRS in the next few weeks. The National Restaurant Association’s Health Care HQ site offers a bounty of information on the ACA and its requirements.
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