The Affordable Care Act, often known as Obamacare, is the law of the land. It has many implications for both individuals and businesses as it rolls out, and crosses over into many areas of tax. Many of our clients are anxious about how the law may impact them, and we are getting more and more requests for tax consulting with reference to health issues.

The Individual Mandate and San Francisco Residents

Health Care and Taxes in San FranciscoResidents of San Francisco, just as residents throughout California, and across the USA are now required to purchase health insurance as individuals if they are not able to get health insurance through their employers. Those who do not have coverage will face penalties form the IRS. Fortunately, California has one of the most functional health exchanges, called “Covered California“.  That said, the exchange is just a way to purchase health insurance as an individual. You may or may not have interesting tax implications via individual health insurance. In some cases, people may incorporate or form businesses just to be able to gain some advantages from having “business insurance.”

Taxes and health care are interlinked now more than ever. So the bottom line is consult with a tax professional as you plot your strategy in the new environment of the Affordable Care Act.

Businesses and Health Care in the Affordable Care Act (California and San Francisco)

San Francisco, on the one hand, ranks as one of the most expensive cities in the United States. Health care costs for employers are yet another expense in this high-cost California city. On the other hand, San Francisco tends to be very progressive with many employers committed to offering quality health care for their employees. The strategy is to offer great coverage for your employees, yet take advantage of new tax benefits for providing health care coverage. New laws have created special tax incentives; check with a tax professional to find out how your business can take advantage.

Some aspects of the Affordable Care Act for businesses have been delayed, so some aspects may not yet be available.