Earlier this morning, the United States Supreme Court issued its much-anticipated decision (pdf) on the constitutionality of the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), the health care reform legislation signed into law by President Obama in 2010. The Supreme Court ruled that the PPACA, including the individual mandate requiring almost all Americans to buy health insurance, is constitutional.

While the Supreme Court’s decision eliminates one of the major sources of uncertainty facing employers around the country, employers must now take significant steps to comply with the PPACA’s many requirements, or face penalties. And while the individual mandate does not become effective until 2014, some of the PPACA’s requirements take effect as early as September 2012. For example, employers must be prepared to provide summaries of benefits and coverages to their employees during open enrollment. Employers will also be required to report the value of employer health coverage on IRS Form W-2 for 2012.

To help employers determine how the Supreme Court’s decision affects their businesses and benefits plans, the Employee Benefits Group of McNees Wallace & Nurick LLC will be offering two presentations in July 2012 entitled “What the Supreme Court’s Decision on Health Care Reform Means to Your Business.” These presentations will provide a practical guide to employers and other professionals who need to understand the decision and their obligations under the PPACA going forward.

Presentations will be held in Lancaster, PA, on July 13, 2012, and in Grantville, PA, on July 20, 2012. Information, including how to register, is available here (July 13, 2012) and here (July 20, 2012).

We will continue to keep you updated on any additional developments in this area.