Beginning no later than October 1, 2013, employers must provide notice to all current and newly hired employees of healthcare options available through the Affordable Health Care Act's (ACA) health insurance exchanges, the DOL announces in Technical Release 2013-02.

The technical release provides temporary guidance on the notice requirement as well as a model exchange notice. The requirement to issue the exchange notice to employees was to take effect on March 1, 2013, but the DOL announced a delay in January. At the time, the agency said it expected that exchange notices would be distributed sometime in the late summer or the fall.

Newly hired employees must receive notice at the time of hiring. For 2014, the DOL will consider a notice to be timely delivered if it's provided within 14 days of an employee's start date. Current workers must receive notice by October 1.

The guidance also includes a model notice for employers not offering health coverage and an updated notice for group health plans for continuation coverage under COBRA.

Model notices