ObamaCare Encourages Shift to Part-Time Workers

Today’s WSJ reports:

Several restaurants, hotels and retailers have started or are preparing to limit schedules of hourly workers to below 30 hours a week. That is the threshold at which large employers in 2014 would have to offer workers a minimum level of insurance or pay a penalty starting at $2,000 for each worker.

The shift is one of the first significant steps by employers to avoid requirements under the health-care law . . .

benefits consultants said most retail and hotel clients have explored shifting toward part-time workers.

Those industries are less likely to offer health coverage now, and if they do, the plans typically are too skimpy to meet the minimum-coverage requirements.

“They’ve all considered it,” Matthew Stevenson, a workforce-strategy principal at Mercer. In a July survey, 32% of retail and hospitality company respondents told the consulting firm that they were likely to reduce the number of employees working 30 hours a week or more.