A: Employers are really struggling with implementation of the ACA and its impact. The upside of the delay in the pay or play mandate is that it gives employers more time to analyze these issues and make appropriate adjustments. Part of the issue has been that the regulations have been trickling out and many have still not been finalized, so it was very difficult for employers to make decisions. Some options that employers are considering to address increased costs are: (1) switching to high-deductible plans; (2) discontinuing coverage options for spouses; (3) monitoring employees hours so that they do not qualify as full time; (4) refraining from hiring new employees; and (5) implementing wellness programs or initiatives to help keep employees healthy.
PAULA BURKES, BUSINESS WRITER