Category Archives: Health Care Reform

Employees Not Helped by Slow Health Premium Growth

Employers have been shifting more premium costs to workers and increasing their deductibles. That, in addition to the fact that price growth in the health sector outpaces growth for the rest of the economy,  has resulted in a disproportionate increase…

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Rules Attempt to Streamline ACA Benefits Summary

Proposed changes to the Summary of Benefits and Coverage rules under health care reform include additions and subtractions to the SBC template, as well as clarifications on how plan sponsors and insurers may apportion the responsibility to furnish the SBC…

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Definition of ‘Excepted Benefits’ Would Expand under ACA Proposal

Two specific types of limited wraparound coverage could qualify as “limited excepted benefits,” under health care reform rules proposed Dec. 19 by the U.S. Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services and the Treasury. “Excepted” status would be available on a temporary…

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ACA Transitional Relief: What Employers Ought to Know

Leading employee benefits attorneys recently discussed rules on calculating workforces and identifying to whom the employer must make an offer of coverage. Vanessa Scott, a partner with Sutherland Asbill & Brennan, Washington, D.C., and Malcolm Slee, of Counsel at the Groom…

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Cafeteria Plans Can Help Employers Avoid Pay-or-Play Penalties

Employer contributions to a Section 125 cafeteria plan can be deducted from the employee’s cost of a health plan for purposes of determining the affordability of coverage, final IRS rules on minimum essential coverage published on Nov. 26 (79 Fed….

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CMS Postpones Reform Reinsurance Fee Reporting

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has extended the deadline for contributing entities (or entities reporting on their behalf) to submit annual enrollment counts on which they will base their contribution amounts under health care reform’s transitional reinsurance program….

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After Pondering King, SCOTUS Stalls on Reform Subsidies

The U.S. Supreme Court has not yet acted on a request to hear a case that seeks to eliminate health insurance premium subsidies in the states that refused to set up their own health insurance exchanges. The High Court discussed…

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Health Care Reform Mandates: Impending Dates

The next three months are crunch time. Employers have to get moving on several deadlines, most of them required under health care reform. Some reform rules should have taken effect in 2014, but were subject to the year-long delay instituted…

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Few Self-Insured Plans Will Escape Paying Reinsurance Fees

Only self-insured plans that completely self-administer claims payments and plan operations will avoid paying onerous transitional reinsurance fees. If a self-insured health plan does no more than determine eligibility, it will have to pay, according to Jeffrey Endick, an attorney with Slevin…

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Decisions Must be Made on How Employers Will Manage Section 6055/56 Reporting

Employers deciding how to comply with the Affordable Care Act’s reporting requirements have important housekeeping questions to decide, such as: (1) who will take phone calls from the IRS and employees about ACA forms; (2) whether electronic filing (for the…

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