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Covered CA

Published statistics indicate hundreds of thousands of California small employers being eligible for the small business health care tax credit. This is not my experience. Can you comment on this?

There are over half a million small employers in California. A recent report by the Lewin Group and published by The Small Business Majority found that:

  • More than 375,000 small businesses in California (70 percent of California businesses with fewer than 25 workers) are eligible for tax credits to help with the cost of health coverage for their workers for the 2011 tax year
  • More than two in five (42 percent of) small businesses that are eligible for this tax credit are eligible for the maximum tax credit when they file their 2011 taxes
  • More than 2.4 million Californians are employed by a small business that is eligible for a tax credit for the 2011 tax year
  • The total value of the tax credits that are available to eligible small businesses for 2011 is more than $1.8 billion, an average of $752 per worker

It’s worth bearing in mind that many of these small businesses do not currently offer health insurance to their employees. While the tax credit may not be the main reason for an employer to start offering coverage, we believe it’s a strong message for brokers to communicate to their employer prospects along with all the other reasons why employers should start offering coverage.

Lastly, these are statewide statistics. Agents with a client base in relatively affluent, higher-wage areas of the state will experience fewer employers that are eligible for the credit.