Affordable Care Act Resources

The Affordable Care Act aims to expand health coverage through a series of provisions that include:

  • Individual Mandate: Mandates all Americans, with some exceptions, to maintain a minimum level of health coverage or face a tax.
  • Insurance Exchanges: Creates health insurance Exchanges and provides premium tax credits to assist eligible individuals with the purchase of coverage.
  • Medicaid Expansion: Allows state to expand Medicaid up to 138% of federal poverty level.
  • Employer Mandate: Mandates employers with 50 or more full-time equivalents to offer coverage to full-time employees and their dependents (applicable only to children, not spouses) or pay taxes if an employee obtains Exchange coverage and a premium tax credit.

Key Dates


  • June 2013: Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services opens a 24-hour call center to field questions about Exchanges and coverage options. is re-launched.
  • October 1, 2013: Exchanges begin open enrollment period; employers must begin providing Fair Labor Standards Act coverage notices to employees by October 1 and to new hires beginning October 1.
  • For employers who DO offer health insurance
  • For employers who DO NOT offer health insurance
  • January 1, 2014: Medicaid expansion and availability of premium tax credits for Exchange coverage begins. Beginning one-year transition period for employer penalties and information reporting requirements.
  • January 1, 2015: Employers generally must be in compliance with coverage requirements. (Note: The Administration provided a transition period for employer tax penalties. This does not delay implementation, but penalties will not apply until 2015.)

Dance/USA will examine the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and how it impacts the dance field at the 2014 Dance Forum. The 2014 Dance Forum will take place Friday, January 10, 2014 and is dedicated to providing invaluable information about the ACA to dance artists and administrators and is strategically timed to take place in the middle of Open Enrollment, which runs from October 2013-March 2014. 

Explore links to the following organizations and discover a wealth of information that is relevant to arts organizations and independent artists:, the comprehensive government website on the ACA, should be your first stop when researching your coverage options. The site offers information about Health Insurance Marketplaces and provides details on how to find the Marketplace in your home state.

  • The IRS has launched a full-scale website in advance of ACA implementation, to serve as a resource for individual taxpayers and employers 
  • The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities offers webinars and more about the ACA and health reform
  • The Actors Fund has numerous resources explaining healthcare options and health insurance. Learn more about the Artists Health Insurance Resource Center  (AHIRC) which provides more information about:
    • Individual consultations
    • Small business assistance program
    • Seminars, community outreach programs, and workshops about your healthcare options
  • Fractured Atlas resources about insurance including:
    • The artist’s guide to health insurance and health reform
    • ACA and the arts community
  • Independent Sector: Health Care Reform Implementation Information including a webinar.  Key information to note:
    • Page 14: Determining if your organization in a Large Employer or a Small Employer
    • Page 19: Seasonal Employee Safe Harbor Provision (important for performing arts organizations)
    • Page 23: Employer Tax Penalties
  • Click here to view the entire Independent Sector webinar on ACA implementation.
  • The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation offers multiple resources regarding the ACA, Health Insurance Exchanges in your State, and overviews of the current state of insured people in your region. Check out their Health Reform page for answers to questions such as:
    • Where does your state stand
    • Frequently asked questions on health reform
    • Health insurance subsidy calculator
    • Summary of the ACA
  • Artists and the Affordable Care Act, a website created by a task force of musician and artist advocacy organizations, offers information such as:
    • Artist-specific seminar and event information
    • An artist-friendly hotline
    • Frequently asked questions, such as "what if I can't predict what my income is going to be"