Question: When do we have to be in compliance with the new requirements for financial assistance policies and emergency care policies?
Answer: The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (“ACA”) added §501(r) to the Internal Revenue Code, imposing new requirements, financial assistance policies, and emergency care policies, on 501(c)(3), “nonprofit” organizations. Last December, the IRS published the final regulations, giving some hospitals just one year to comply with the final regulations.
The date on which a hospital must be in compliance depends on when its tax year begins. A hospital must be in compliance with the Section 501(r) final regulations beginning on the first day of its first tax year after December 29, 2015.
So, if a hospital’s year ends on December 31, 2015, it must be in compliance by January 1, 2016. If it ends on June 30, 2016, it must be in compliance by July 1, 2016. If it ends on September 30, 2016, it must be in compliance by October 1, 2016.