I work part time at a local community college bookstore. The college now restricts me to 29 hours a week to maintain a part time status. In the past, at various times of the year, I would work up to maximum of forty hours a week (graduation, book rush, book buy-back etc,). As I am a retiree I have full insurance coverage through my previous employer. May I opt out of my current employers insurance requirements? Also, during these “busy” times we employ temporary workers. The college now limits these employees to 29 hours per week. Is this correct as they are temporary employees?


A employer must offer you coverage (assuming they meet the requirements) if you are full-time. Generally however, they only owe a fee if you use Marketplace cost assistance. Thus, your employer could let you work over 40 hours a week (knowing you won't use cost assistance on the Marketplace) and avoid the fee. Learn more about Employer Responsibilities.

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Katherine McConnell on

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I am still confused. As a PART TIME employee who periodically works full-time am I allowed to opt out of my employers health insurance? Kathie

ObamaCareFacts.com on

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Generally if your total hours are under 30 you are not full-time, if they are over 40 you are. Employers use a “look back” period of up to 12 months to determine full-time status. So you could work 40 or more hours some weeks and still be part-time based on your average hours worked over the look back period. If someone works seasonal, like summer school for teachers, there are other ways to credit hours that could also help avoid full-time status.

Jody Mullinix on

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If an individual already has health insurance through a spouse is an employer able to give this individual over 30 hours without being penalized or does the employer need to register me as full-time and I decline benefits?

ObamaCareFacts.com on

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They have to offer you coverage if you work over 30 hours, however they only owe the fee if you get cost assistance on the Marketplace. So your employer won’t get the fee if you deny their coverage. In order for you to use the Marketplace (if you have access to employer coverage) you need to have your employer fill out a form saying that they don’t provide you qualifying affordable coverage. Since they do, there shouldn’t be any problems for the employer or the employee unless the employer refuses to offer coverage to the employee.

Heather on

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The opt out portion was not answered. I work for a school dist. And have taken a “full time” position. I have (better) insurance with my husband and do not want the schools insurance. They are telling me I have to take their insurance. I don’t want it. How do I opt out?

ObamaCareFacts.com on

You can opt-out of any coverage you want. If you opt-out of one work plan for another the only drawback is that you won’t be able to re-enroll in your employer coverage without meeting their special enrollment criteria and you won’t be able to get cost assistance through the Health Insurance Marketplace.

Nancy on

Any ideas on what code the employer then uses for Line 16 of the 1095-C form, if an employee was offered coverage but opted to take their spouse’s employer coverage instead? The IRS Instructions don’t cover that scenario.

ObamaCareFacts.com on

Really good question, I don’t see a code specific to “made a qualifying offer of health coverage and employee opted out”. If you do a command find for any of those words on the C instructions you’ll find discussions, but we haven’t found a code specific to Line 16.

The only note is the instructions say: “If none of the codes apply for a calendar month, leave the line blank for that month.” so the answer may simply be “leave it blank”.

Al Neisen on

I drive US mail for a contract employer. They say I can not opt out. Is this true?A

Erin on

You are never required to accept any insurance that is offered to you, but if you don’t have minimal essential coverage or an exemption, then you will owe the fee for not having insurance.