Nearly every opponent of health care reform has argued that the Affordable Care Act, known as Obamacare, will kill small businesses. But the new rules donâ€™t apply to most small business. The employer mandate rule which forces firms to start providing insurance in 2014 pertains to companies with at least 50 full-time workers. But it applies only to 3% of Americaâ€™s small businesses, reports CNN. That equals about 200,000 companies. As of 2010, there were roughly 5.7 million small employers, defined as those with fewer than 500 workers. Some 97% of them have fewer than 50 employees.
Complying with health care mandates can be costly. If those businesses with 50-plus workers don’t provide insurance they could face $40,000 in penalties and $2,000 for each additional full-time employee. However, nearly 96% of all of those businesses already do provide health insurance and most qualify under Obamacareâ€™s requirements. Obamacare deems insurance unaffordable if it costs more than 9.5% of a worker’s income. More than 99% of those in work-sponsored plans have insurance that meets most Obamacare coverage standards, according to the latest studies.
All in all, only a tiny sliver of the nation’s small businesses face the new rules and even fewer face any changes. Of the country’s 6.5 million workplaces, only 1% must actually start providing insurance next year.