The changes won't start to phase in until 2013. But they show how companies are beginning to respond to the new law, which should make it easier for people in their 50s and early-60s to find affordable policies on their own. While thousands of employers are tapping new funds from the law to keep retiree plans, 3M illustrates that others may not opt to retain such plans over the next few years
Whereas the administration previously insisted that retiree plans would remain largely exempt from the health insurance overhaul, an internal 3M memo states that "health care reform has made it more difficult for employers like 3M to provide a plan that will remain competitive." The company didn't specify how many workers would be impacted. It currently has 23,000 American retirees.