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The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA)

President Obama signed the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) into law in March 2010. This comprehensive health-care reform law aims to expand Americans' access to affordable health-care insurance. Some of the changes resulting from the law are already in effect, and others will go into effect over a period of years.

What do UA employees need to know?

The existing health benefits meet the ACA's requirements for affordable employee coverage and benefit value, and fulfill the requirement that individuals have health insurance coverage.

What is an individual UA employee's responsibility to comply with the ACA?

The ACA requires most Americans to have medical insurance (effective January 1, 2014) or pay a penalty. However, the law offers you flexibility to choose how and where to get coverage. If you already have health insurance through an employer-sponsored plan (such as the health insurance benefits UA provides to benefits-eligible employees), Medicaid, Medicare, or private insurance, you can keep it. Another option is to purchase health insurance from the Health Insurance Marketplace, also known as the exchange, and possibly qualify for a subsidy (you can’t receive a subsidy if you are eligible to enroll in health benefits through UA). For more information on the options available to you, please visit

What is the UA's responsibility to comply with the ACA?

Effective January 1, 2015, large employers (50 or more employees) like the UA incur penalties if they fail to offer health insurance benefits to all employees who average 30 or more work hours per week.

UA employees working at least 20 hours per week in a position that is 90 days or more in duration are already offered health insurance benefits. Therefore, UA meets ACA requirements. In some cases, employees who transfer from a benefits-eligible to a non-benefits-eligible position without a break in service may qualify to continue their UA health insurance temporarily.

To comply with the ACA and ensure that all UA employees who average 30 or more work hours per week are offered health insurance benefits, it is imperative that UA departments and units monitor the employment of and hours worked by non-benefits-eligible employees. Departmental business officers and other administrative staff can click here for more information and guidance.