Business groups ask IRS to delay health law's employer mandate

Beginning in 2014, the Affordable Care Act requires employers with more than 50 full-time workers to offer health coverage or pay a penalty. 

Businesses will be penalized for each employee who gets a subsidy from the federal government to buy coverage on his or her own.

Complying with the mandate is complicated, particularly because of the way the law calculates full-time equivalent employees, the Chamber said, adding that businesses need a year to figure out the new system before facing fines.

"Particularly, as our country and economy continue to recover from a significant recession and high unemployment and underemployment rates, we urge Treasury and IRS to afford employers an appropriate non-enforcement period before penalties are imposed," the Chamber said in its comments.

The National Retail Federation echoed the Chamber's concerns.

"We continue to urge you to strongly emphasize compliance assistance rather than penalty application in the early years of ACA applicability," the group said in its comments to the IRS.