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Blog May 2012
Form W-2 Reporting of Employer-Sponsored Health Coverage
The Affordable Care Act requires employers to report the cost of coverage under an employer-sponsored group health plan. Reporting the cost of health care coverage on the Form W-2 does not mean that the coverage is taxable. The value of the employer’s excludable contribution to health coverage continues to be excludable from an employee's income, and it is not taxable. This reporting is for informational purposes only and will provide employees useful and comparable consumer information on the cost of their health care coverage.
Employers that provide "applicable employer-sponsored coverage" under a group health plan are subject to the reporting requirement. This includes businesses, tax-exempt organizations, and federal, state and local government entities (except with respect to plans maintained primarily for members of the military and their families). However, federally recognized Indian tribal governments are not subject to this requirement.
For certain employers, types of coverage, and situations, there is transition relief from the requirement to report the value of coverage on the 2012 Forms W-2 (the forms for calendar year 2012 that employers generally are required to provide employees in January 2013). This relief will apply to future calendar years until the IRS publishes additional guidance. However, any guidance that expands the reporting requirements will apply only to calendar years that start at least six months after the guidance is issued. See the “Optional Reporting” column in the below chart for the employers, types of coverage, and situations eligible for the transition relief.
If you have up to 25 employees, pay average annual wages below $50,000, and provide health insurance, you may qualify for a small business tax credit of up to 35% (up to 25% for non-profits) to offset the cost of your insurance. This will bring down the cost of providing insurance.
Enacted into law as part of the Small Business Jobs Act of 2010 (the Jobs Act), the Small Business Lending Fund (SBLF) is a dedicated investment fund that encourages lending to small businesses by providing capital to qualified community banks1 and community development loan funds (CDLFs) with assets of less than $10 billion. Through the SBLF, participating Main Street lenders and small businesses can work together to help create jobs and promote economic growth in local communities across the nation.
In total, the SBLF provided more than $4 billion to 332 community banks and CDLFs. Since these institutions leverage their capital, the SBLF could help increase lending to small businesses in an amount that is multiples of the total capital provided.
If you are like most business owners in the United States, you are constantly working to target the best opportunities for your firm within the constraints of more and more limited resources. You’ve heard of all the buzzwords and the hot global markets—but how will they relate to you? In order to be a global leader, you need quick and affordable access to up-to-the-minute and relevant information.
Long before we learned to “google” information, international business professionals have utilized the most complete resource for locating opportunities for their firms. globalEDGE is a one-stop shop—bringing together the most up-to-date and relevant economic, political, and cultural data from thousands of sources. This information is crucial for new to export and seasoned multinational corporations alike.
During President Obama’s January 2012 State of the Union Address, the president discussed progress of the National Export Initiative. The program, begun in 2010, aims to double America’s exports by 2014. To help reach this goal, the Obama administration added 20 percent to the Commerce Department’s International Trade Administration budget, which now totals $540 million. The administration also increased the budget of the U.S. Export-Import Bank from $4 billion to $6 billion.
This is a commitment that is important to small businesses. Only about 8 percent of America’s 27.9 million small businesses export goods or services; and of those that export goods, 58 percent export to only one country.