Many employers understand that key benefits such as employer paid health insurance is an important employee recruitment and retention tool.
Is health insurance taxable?
- Effective January 1, 2017, household employers with fewer than 50 household employees may reimburse health insurance premiums obtained in the individual marketplace on a tax free basis utilizing a QUALIFIED SMALL EMPLOYER HEALTH REIMBURSEMENT ARRANGEMENT (QSEHRA).
- The tax free nature of this benefit to both the employer and the household employee make this an attractive consideration when negotiating initial salaries as well as salary increases.
- Annual limitations apply; $5,050/annually for individual insurance premiums, and $10,250 for family plans.(2018 limits)
- Non-discrimination tests apply – this means if you have 2 or more full time household employees all must receive the same benefit (26 USC §9831 (d)(2)(C)).
- The QSEHRA is 100% funded by the household employer.
- The QSEHRA reimbursements must be reported on the employee’s Form W-2 annually. *
Why Establish a QSEHRA?
- The nanny or caregiver with medical insurance is more likely to obtain preventative care (annual physicals, cholesterol screening, mammograms, PAP tests, etc.) and will often establish a medical relationship she can call upon when acute problems (ear infections for example) arise. A healthier nanny misses less work.
- A nanny who receives a health insurance benefit is less likely to change jobs.
- A nanny who qualifies may be able to collect insurance premium subsidies (federal premium tax credits and cost sharing reductions) when purchasing individual health insurance through a public (State and Federal) Exchange.
Tax rules and regulations surrounding the health insurance industry are in a period of rapid change. HWS encourages employers to seek appropriate professional counsel when establishing health care reimbursement plans and insure that their reimbursement plan remains compliant with current rules and regulations.
HWS provides this information as a courtesy to help you understand the changes to household employee payroll services resulting from the ACA. This is not be construed as specific tax or legal advice. Guidance relative to the ACA / Obamacare is subject to revision and this may not be the most current information available.
* HWS clients will have proper W-2 reporting when reimbursement is made via HWS payroll. HWS does NOT administer the QSEHRA plan, and record-keeping is an employer responsibility. HWS will only reimburse upon employer instruction. We regret that we cannot offer this W-2 reporting to Essential Payroll clients.
Updated December 31, 2017