More than four million small businesses and tax-exempt organizations will be receiving IRS postcards about the benefits of the recently enacted small business health care tax credit.
The credit, which takes effect this year, is designed to encourage small employers to offer health insurance coverage for the first time or to maintain coverage they already have.
In general, the credit is available to small employers that pay at least half the cost of single coverage for their employees in 2010. It’s specifically targeted to help small businesses and tax-exempt organizations that primarily employ low- and moderate-income workers.
For tax years 2010 to 2013, the maximum credit is 35 percent of premiums paid by eligible small business employers and 25 percent of premiums paid by eligible employers that are tax-exempt organizations. The maximum credit goes to smaller employers –– those with 10 or fewer full-time equivalent (FTE) employees –– paying annual average wages of $25,000 or less. The credit is completely phased out for employers that have 25 FTEs or more or that pay average wages of $50,000 per year or more. Because the eligibility rules are based in part on the number of FTEs, not the number of employees, businesses that use part-time help may qualify even if they employ more than 25 people. The credit is completely phased out for employers that have 25 FTEs or more or that pay average wages of $50,000 per year or more.
Eligible small businesses can claim the credit as part of the general business credit starting with the 2010 income tax return they file in 2011. For tax-exempt organizations, the IRS will provide further information on how to claim the credit.
More information about the credit is available on IRS.gov.
- State-by-state distribution of the postcard