Dunkin’ Donuts Wants Obamacare Rule Change to Exclude Covering More Employees

When the Democrats wrote the 2,000 page tome officially titled Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, more popularly labeled Obamacare, they defined full-time employees as those working 30 or more hours a week.  Companies employing 50 or more workers would be forced to provide healthcare coverage for all full-time employees or face a fine of up to $2,000 per employee.

Some companies have realized that it is more economical for them to pay the $2,000 fine rather than spend upwards of $15,000 paying for healthcare coverage.  It seems like a no brainer for many companies and consequently, millions of Americans will be losing their employer provided coverage within the next year.

Kroger, a Cincinnati based supermarket chain, is one of those companies that is considering paying the fines instead of coverage.  They cite a report that says it costs a company an average of $4,664 for coverage of a single employee and over $11,000 for coverage for an employee and their family.  Kroger has over 2,400 stores in 31 states and employs 339,000 people, many of which are already part-time workers.

David Dillon, CEO of Kroger said:

“If you look through the economics of the penalty the companies pay versus the cost to provide coverage, the penalty’s too low, or the cost of coverage is too high, or the combination is wrong.”

“If [policy makers] get those things too far out of balance, everybody will have to reconsider their position on that point, including us, but we’re going to wait and see how that all develops.”

However, one company, Dunkin’ Brands is taking a different approach in the effort to save money.  They are asking the Obama administration to re-define full-time employees as those working 40 or more hours per week.  Based in Canton, Ohio, Dunkin’ Brands owns Dunkin’ Donuts, the world’s largest baked goods and coffee chains in the world with over 10,000 locations in 32 countries.  In the US, they have over 7,000 locations in 36 states.

Over all, it seems that hundreds, perhaps thousands of employers are looking at either reducing workers’ hours to under the full-time definition or dropping health-coverage altogether.  This is the exact opposite effect we were told would happen when Obamacare was passed.  In the wake of the trend in the business world, it seems that the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act should have been named, the Patient Ruination and Eliminating Care Act.



  • patriotusa2

    This health care business is turning this country upside down and destroying the viability of business all over this entire country. States are in confusion, and officials are wondering how they can pay for the cost of everything, while Doctors are leaving the profession in droves. It's an all around total catastrophe and yet it goes on. Too bad Justice Roberts took a turn toward the left and "left" his country in a lurch.

    • JohnGalt

      True enough about Roberts.

      However, the REAL problem lies with an abjectly ignorant voting populace that would elect an off the charts, Far Left radical RaceMarxist to the office of President, along with the talentless, self-serving human detritus that infests most of Congress.

      • patriotusa2

        That's true, and that in my opinion is why these people kept our borders open because they knew these foreigners were coming here for welfare, handouts and anything else they knew they'd get for nothing, including benefits from social security. They couldn't care less which way this country is headed, or by whom, as long as the gravy train still rides.

        • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_HCHFAE6ZUJC6XX6WXS4NRMDI2A Rick

          What you stated above is exactly what BHO and his minions (or puppet masters) wanted. Chaos and confusion all the way down...

    • Doodlebug

      obummer is looking forward to having ALL companies pay the fine rather than insure their employees. That way he will have everyone turning to the government for insurance and he won big time, socialized medicine. That's all he wants!! I don't understand why congress funds it. Over 15,000 pages of rules and regulations and they aren't done yet. Who knows what the end result will be IF they ever get the d__n thing finished.

  • Fedup4

    A major catastrophe for the country is all it is.

  • Mitch A

    No kidding. All the bad things opponents of this liberal trash legislation said would happen are correct after all? The vote buying, minority pandering, baby killing libs were wrong? I'm devastated, I don't think I will ever recover my belief in BIG GOVERNMENT.

  • http://www.facebook.com/lorna.doone.319 Lorna Doone
  • http://www.facebook.com/lorna.doone.319 Lorna Doone
  • /.murphy

    Don't you think that we should eliminate all government involvement in health care? No ObamaCare, no Medicare, and no Medicaid. Even the Veterans' Administration Health Care System--a great example of socialized medicine--should go. Stop with the all hand-outs, and let everyone pay for his or her own needs. Employers should not have to offer it, either. We still have private insurance carriers in this country, so let everyone buy their own insurance. Let's try to get back where we were, and then cut Medicare, Medicaid, and the VA. The people served by those would be better off buying their own insurance anyway.

  • http://www.facebook.com/lorna.doone.319 Lorna Doone
    • /.murphy

      No one really knows the costs, even the Obama Administration (they've admitted that). There have been all kinds of people making wild estimates from low to high, but that doesn't change the fact that no one knows.

      Among the major factors in not knowing the cost is not knowing how people are going to behave when it's time to either (a) buy insurance, or (b) pay the fine. There's lots of speculation that people will choose the fine, if it's left at $2K. But that's spending $2K for nothing. Other people may choose to buy a minimal policy at $3.5K, figuring that they were going to have to pay the $2K anyway. At least they will get some coverage, and simultaneously shift the potential for them burdening the system if they get sick away from the government and away from policy-buyers.

      Another unknown factor is whether the fine will remain at $2K. If too many people choose to pay it, the government might adjust it upwards. The idea here is to take all those people who simply coasted through life without insurance for one reason or another, and who became a cost burden for the rest of us when they got sick, and to ram them into the health care system as "payers." Ramming more payers into the system should exert a downward pressure on premiums. I did say "should," but that's another unknown; however, that is also why government intends to regulate pricing.

      For all the talk of "socialism," that is not what the proposed system is. In a socialist system, the government is the single payer, and it owns all of the hospitals and clinics, and employs all of the doctors and other caregivers. It collects taxes to pay for it and redistributes the money to cover costs. ObamaCare is not that at all; it is still fundamentally based on private insurance.

      • http://www.facebook.com/lorna.doone.319 Lorna Doone

        I've always said, the average Joe will find Obamacare too expensive, so they'll opt for the fine. When they pay the fine they'll realize they're paying two income taxes to uncle sam, regular income tax, and Obamacare. Two things that started the revolutionary war, high taxes, and the right to bear arms.

        When folks realize they've been duped into paying extra taxes for another sham and nothing to show for it, all hell will break loose!

        • /.murphy

          What "average Joe" does depends on a lot of factors, and those are the unknowns in the equation. If, for instance, a lot of people enter the system and buy the insurance, then Joe may find that he has a choice between an insurance policy that is only slightly more costly than the fine. In that case, many people may buy the insurance.

          There's another way to look at this, Lorna. For YEARS, people have been going bare when it comes to health insurance, and when they got sick, they burdened the rest of us payers with their costs, because hospitals wouldn't turn them away. Many of us are sick of that (pun intended). At least under the new plan, those people will be forced to cover their own costs.

          So if you don't like ObamaCare, would you instead advocate a situation where insurance wasn't mandatory and where "no insurance" = "no treatment?"

  • CharlieFromMass

    One small error in the original article that was on Newsmax a couple of weeks ago from which this was taken. DD is actually based in Canton, MASSACHUSETTS, not Ohio.

    I think DD has the right take on this. full-time means an honest 35-40 hour a week job. I know a lot of employers will give medical starting at 30, but full-time is full-time. And, even then, I'll bet a lot of companies are still going to drop the covering and pay the fines instead.

    Advancing medical technology is what's made medicine so expensive; the junk lawsuits and over-priced medical schools with artificially-restricted, PC makeup demanded by the AMA don't help, either.

    We need market changes and deregulation, so people who are still qualified can do work that you "need" a doctor for, but really don't.

    Another way to kill the American dream.

  • John Cherish

    I remember when this debate started that it would lower health care costs for Americans what the government considers full time 30 hours is twisted companies simply reduce the hours of their employees and pay the fine the net result is the average worker Gets a 25% pay cut and has to buy his own insurance or be fined (taxed ) for not having it. Its a slap in the face and when we told Liberals this would happen they could not get their heads out of the sand to see it. Their messiah Obama promised free health care for all. But Conservatives know that nothing is free in this world somewhere some how somebody pays for it the somebody is the middle class who will loose their health care and be forced to accept what the government has to offer but as yet they have not defined what that something is you will get for that health care as they are still writing rules to implement it 15,000 pages and counting.When government gets their fingers in it if it aint broke they will fix it so it is

    • jobird

      Just look at the Postal Service-now they will be selling clothing.Maybe Obama will sell
      surgical scrubs to the public and we can be our own doctors.I don't think too many will
      be interested to become physicians,just like all those "wonderful peoples republics of

  • iamsurrounded

    The health care business has been a problem for some time - costs continually skyrocket. They needed to get to the root of the real problems - e.g., lawsuits, insurance companies that gouge everyone so they can make huge profits, fraud and illegal immigrants. But as usual, they ignore the real causes. Now they will destroy the system in an effort to "fix" it.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Mary-Elizabeth-Danuser/698607027 Mary Elizabeth Danuser

    It amazes me how nobody saw what was going to be in their futures
    .Are people that gullible?Liz

  • stinkerbean

    Where the hell were these fools when the Dumbacrats were passing this bill? Did they think they were exempt? Look if Obummer wants to change the law he has to go through congress. Anything else doesn't count or should make the "law" null and void. Since when does this fool of a president think he and his friends can just change the rules whenever they want. Do we no longer have laws? These companies need to go to the Congress and repeal this disaster of a "law". or tell the congress they will no longer support them. What a frigging mess. It is bankrupting our country.

  • fideux

    The opposit effect is the result of virtually everything Obama has tried to do! He's mentally and intellectually challenged.

  • http://www.facebook.com/jacob.sever Jacob Owen Sever

    I work for Best Buy, and they consider full time to be 32 hours or more a week. A lot of companies are like that. But 30? That's a little too low. Glad I don't own a business.

  • Guest

    They're looking to cover their own doughnut hole. You know; like the one in the Medicare Bill.