I’m interested in SHOP coverage but there aren’t any participating insurers in my area. Can I still get SHOP coverage, and can I still get the tax credit?

Coverage for small employers | Small Employer Coverage

If there are no insurers participating in the SHOP then you can’t get SHOP coverage, but you can offer non-SHOP small group coverage. Generally, you are only eligible for the small business health insurance tax credit if you choose to purchase SHOP coverage. However, the IRS issued guidance allowing small businesses to claim the credit if they offer small group coverage other than a SHOP plan if their principal business address is in a county where there are no SHOP plans available, and if that coverage meets certain federal requirements. (IRS, Small Business Health Care Tax Credit and the SHOP Marketplace; IRS, Notice 2018-27).

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