What Repeal of the Individual Mandate Would Mean to Americans

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The Republicans are at it again. The latest negotiations in the Senate on their tax bill have led them back to a proposal to eliminate the individual mandate under the Affordable Care Act. The lure of more than $300 billion in tax savings as calculated by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) is too big a number… [Read More]

ACA Penalties Are About to Hit Employers

ACA Penalties Are About to Hit Employers

Reach way back into your memory bank to the time when your broker presented you with a “pay or play” analysis to determine whether you comply with the employer mandate under the Affordable Care Act. There was the $2,000 penalty which applies to every full-time employee in the event there was no valid offer of… [Read More]

1095 Nightmares

1095 Reporting

I just got an email from UnitedHealthcare regarding 2016 reporting. A light bulb moment. UHC reports 1095Bs for their insured accounts, and eventually, the IRS will do a data match to ascertain that employers complied with the healthcare mandate. Many clients have multiple companies included in their plans, and it is pretty clear that the… [Read More]

Lack of Compliance Will Jeopardize Future ACA Credits

Money coming out of jar

The Affordable Care Act gives lower income Americans subsidies averaging $272 or three-fourths of the premium needed to purchase healthcare. The law requires that in order for these subsidies to be paid, the recipient must file a U.S. federal tax return. A 1040EZ won’t cut it; because of the law’s complexity, many of these lower… [Read More]

Reporting Acrobatics

Healthcare Paperwork

For the last 6 months, I have been meeting with dozens of employers of varying sizes and industries regarding the coming 1095 reporting requirements. As we previously advised, this is the greatest administrative burden imposed on employers since the Tax Payment Act of 1943 demanded payroll reporting. Unfortunately, familiarizing an employer with the differences between… [Read More]

King v. Burwell Ruling

Supreme-Court

Just out of the courtroom – King v. Burwell has been ruled on and the subsidies on the federal exchange are upheld. There were really only three possible outcomes: (1) that subsidies can be awarded on the federal as well as state sponsored exchanges (2) that subsidies on federal sponsored exchanges are contrary to the… [Read More]

5500 Reporting: Are You Up to Date?

Paperwork and Calculating Cost

If you’re like many of our clients, you probably know that you are required to submit annual Form 5500 reporting for your company’s pension and 401(k) plans. But a surprisingly high number of clients are not aware that they need to submit Form 5500 reporting for health and welfare plans as well. The criteria of… [Read More]

Wellness Compliance is Now a Certainty

Corporate Wellness

ACA made it clear that healthcare and wellness incentives go hand in hand. Well, sort of. Benefits consultants have rolled out programs in a good faith effort to conform to the ACA. However, they have done so with one eye on EEOC action as a result of a conflict with ADA regulations prohibiting such activities…. [Read More]

ACA Impacts Flexible Spending Accounts

Prescription Drug Cost

For plan years on or after 1/1/2015, plan sponsors need to be mindful of new rules which impact health FSAs (HFSA).  In order for an HFSA to meet the definition of excepted benefits (and therefore not be subject to ACA’s market reforms requiring unlimited benefits) these plans need to meet two conditions: 1) only individuals… [Read More]

Handling Eligibility Maintenance Because Technology Can’t Do It All

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In this blog, we’ve spoken increasingly about technology innovations hitting healthcare – sometimes technology has played a positive role, and other times, it’s questionable. I’ve seen many companies embracing online enrollment platforms lately. And while I applaud their conveniences and efficiency, I have to throw up a cautionary flag. You just can’t put technology on… [Read More]