NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

ObamaCare Causes Cuts for Hourly Workers

June 11, 2013

The 2010 Affordable Care Act, commonly known as ObamaCare, requires employers with at least 50 full-time workers to offer health insurance to those working at least 30 hours a week. If they don't, they face a financial penalty, says the Indianapolis Star.

  • Schools across Indiana are cutting back the hours of teacher assistants, bus drivers, cafeteria workers and other aides to avoid having to offer them health insurance under the federal health care employer mandate that begins next year.
  • Dennis Costerison, executive director of the Indiana Association of School Business Officials, says that complying with the health care law is one of the biggest issues facing school officials.
  • For hourly employees, such as food service workers who work 30 or more hours in the school year but not in the summer, hours will be reduced to keep them under the legal requirement.

Labor researchers say there's not enough data yet on how employers are reacting to the insurance mandate to calculate the effect on part-time workers.

  • A study of Hawaii's requirement that firms provide insurance to those working at least 20 hours a week found a slight increase in the share of workers falling below that threshold after the requirement went into effect.
  • However, in Massachusetts, where the insurance requirement kicks in after 35 hours a week, there was no evidence of a disproportionate shift toward part-time work.

Source: Maureen Groppe, "Some Indiana Schools Cut Hours of Part-Time Workers to Avoid ObamaCare Requirements," Indianapolis Star, June 7, 2013.


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