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Employee Benefits Management News
- Opportunity exists to educate HR professionals about the benefits of private exchanges, survey finds
- Draft forms for 2016 ACA health coverage reporting are now available
- Comments requested on alternative accommodation for providing contraceptive services
- Employees are satisfied with wellness programs, but more personalization is needed
Pension Plan Guide News
- DOL issues corrections to class best interest contract exemption that allows entities that are ERISA fiduciaries by providing investment advice to receive compensation
- DOL updates ERISA civil penalties with interim final rules
- EBSA releases proposed regs that conform to revisions to Form 5500s improving plan reporting
Opportunity exists to educate HR professionals about the benefits of private exchanges, survey finds
Forty-four percent of employers would switch to an exchange if it could help control their benefits costs without compromising the quality of plans they offer to employees, according to a Liazon survey.
Draft forms for 2016 ACA health coverage reporting are now available
The IRS has published draft versions of the 2016 forms that applicable large employers (ALEs) must use to complete health coverage reporting — Form 1095-C, Employer-Provided Health Insurance Offer and Coverage, and Form 1094-C, Transmittal of Employer-Provided Health Insurance Offer and Coverage Information Returns.
Comments requested on alternative accommodation for providing contraceptive services
The IRS, Department of Treasury, the Employee Benefits Security Administration, Department of Labor and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) have jointly requested information through comments from all interested parties on whether there are alternative ways for eligible organizations that object to providing coverage for contraceptive services on religious grounds to obtain an accommodation, while still ensuring that women enrolled in the organizations’ health plans have access to coverage of the full range of FDA-approved contraceptives without cost sharing.
Employees are satisfied with wellness programs, but more personalization is needed
Satisfaction with health and well-being programs is high, but more personalization is needed, according to recent research from Welltok and the National Business Group on Health.
DOL issues corrections to class best interest contract exemption that allows entities that are ERISA fiduciaries by providing investment advice to receive compensation
The Labor Department has made technical corrections to the Best Interest Contract Exemption, which allows certain persons that are fiduciaries under ERISA or the Code or both, by reason of providing investment advice, to receive compensation that may otherwise be prohibited. The corrections in this document fix typographical errors, make minor clarifications to provisions that might otherwise be confusing, and confirm insurers’ broad eligibility to rely on the exemption, consistent with the exemption’s clearly intended scope and the analysis and data relied upon in the Department’s final regulatory impact analysis (RIA).
DOL updates ERISA civil penalties with interim final rules
The Labor Department has issued an interim final rule to adjust the amounts of civil penalties assessed or enforced in its regulations. The Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act of 1990 as amended by the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act Improvements Act of 2015 (Inflation Adjustment Act) requires agencies to adjust the levels of civil monetary penalties with an initial catch-up adjustment, followed by annual adjustments for inflation. The Department is required to calculate the catch-up and subsequent annual adjustments based on the Consumer Price Index for all Urban Consumers. The Department must publish the interim final rule by July 1, 2016, and the new penalty levels are effective no later than August 1, 2016.
EBSA releases proposed regs that conform to revisions to Form 5500s improving plan reporting
The DOL has proposed amendments to its regulations relating to annual reporting requirements under ERISA. The proposed amendments contained in this document would conform the DOL’s reporting regulations to proposed revisions to the Form 5500 Annual Return/Report of Employee Benefit Plan and Form 5500-SF Short Form Annual Return/Report of Small Employee Benefit Plan. The proposed regulation, and related forms revisions, would improve employee benefit plan reporting for filers, the public, and the Agencies. The revision is necessary because the annual return/report forms have not kept pace with market developments and changes in the laws covering employee benefit plans, presenting problems with outdated and missing information that negatively impact the Agencies’ effective and efficient protection of employee retirement and health benefits. The proposed revisions would affect employee pension and welfare benefit plans, plan sponsors, administrators, and service providers.
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