While small business owners may have steered clear of Obamacare's regulations and penalties in year one of the president's landmark health-care legislation, the Affordable Care Act, they won't be so lucky this time around.
Open enrollment period officially kicked off on Saturday, and small companies with at least 100 or more full-time workers now have big decisions to make. They have to offer employees government-approved health insurance, or face a penalty of $2,000 per worker, per year. Full-time workers are defined as those that work 30 hours or more a week.
Such potential costs are weighing heavily on small business owners. Payroll processing firm ADP has conducted a survey over three years, and health-care costs and worries have consistently ranked as a top-three problem for these companies.
Those businesses with between 50 and 999 employees this year said the top two concerns were the cost of health coverage and other benefits, followed by health-care complexities, according to the ADP survey.
The third concern cited was the level and volume of government regulations, according to the survey.