Question: The Small Business Fact Sheet on the coveredca.com website states that the SHOP exchange is for businesses with 50 or fewer full-time equivalent employees. On the CoveredCA agent webinar #2, Michael Lujan says that the FTE calculation is only used to determine whether or not a group is subject to the pay or play mandate and that the SHOP is open to any business with 50 or fewer full time employees, not FTE employees. Which is correct? I’ve sent two emails to folks at CoveredCA but have yet to receive a response.
Answer: The FTE method of calculating employees should be used in both cases that you mentioned according to the ACA: (1) to determine group size in the exchange and (2) to calculate the play or pay penalty if any. I don’t doubt that Mr. Lujan may have mistakenly said otherwise with all he had going on. But the exchange itself is inconsistent in their published information on this issue.