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Have you claimed your small business healthcare tax credit?

Are you eligible for the healthcare tax credit?If you're among the small business owners who will be spending your weekend with your tax accountant, there's still time to cash in on a credit you might be eligible for, courtesy of the Affordable Care Act.

According to John Arensmeyer, founder and CEO of the Small Business Majority, more than half of small business owners are unaware of a tax credit provided by healthcare reform legislation to small businesses that provide health insurance to employees. Those who are aware of it saved thousands of dollars on their 2010 tax returns, and expect to save as much this year. "Currently, businesses with fewer than 25 full-time employees who pay at least 50 percent of total premiums are eligible for a credit of up to 35 percent of their premium contribution," Arensmeyer said, adding that in 2014, the benefit will jump to 50 percent contributions.

Contrary to the argument that healthcare reform is costing small businesses more, Arensmeyer says employers like Nan Warshaw and Ron Nelsen are among more than 300,000 employers who have saved money through the healthcare reform tax credit.

Warshaw, owner of Bloodshoot Records in Chicago, who pays the full contributions of her employees' insurance, saved nearly $6,000 by claiming the credit in 2010. She used the refund to help offset her group coverage cost. Nelsen, owner of Pioneer Overhead Door in Las Vegas, also benefited from the credit, getting back $2,235 for offering insurance to employees in 2010. Arensmeyer says, "The credit eased worries that group costs might spiral so far out of control that he'd be robbed of his commitment to offering insurance."

According to Arensmeyer, results of a 2011 national Small Business Majority survey indicated that one-third of small business owners who currently don't offer health coverage are more likely to start doing so because of the tax credits, and 33 percent of employers already offering insurance said they're more likely to continue doing so.

Check out the tax credit calculator on the Small Business Majority website for an estimate of how much you could save.

Are you getting a healthcare reform tax credit? Or are you among those who say the Affordable Care Act is costing you money instead? If it is, tell us why and how much in the comments. Let's hear it!

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