Spencer Benefits Reports NetNews – May 1, 2015


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Featured This Week


New Reports




May 1, 2015


Only 10 percent of employers have implemented an ACA reporting solution

In January 2016, employers will be required to report to the IRS on their compliance with the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) employer mandate. But as of the first quarter 2015, only 10 percent of employers noted that they have already implemented an in-house or outsourced solution to comply with these reporting requirements. And another 16 percent said that they have not yet even considered a solution, or do not know what solutions they should consider….

        (Read Intelliconnect) »

Annuity purchased with IRA funds exempt from bankruptcy estate

An annuity purchased with funds from a debtor’s individual retirement account is exempt from the debtor’s Chapter 7 bankruptcy estate, the Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals has ruled in
In re Miller

        (Read Intelliconnect) »

April 30, 2015


Certain Buy-In CHIP Programs Treated As Minimum Essential Coverage Only If Insured Actually Enrolled

In Notice 2015-37, the IRS has issued guidance for coverage dates on or after January 1, 2015, for purposes of qualifying for the premium tax credit under Code Sec. 36B. Under the guidance, an individual who may enroll in a CHIP “buy-in” program that HHS has designated as minimum essential coverage is eligible for minimum essential coverage under the program for purposes of the premium tax credit only for the period the individual is actually enrolled (and not merely eligible to enroll)…

        (Read Intelliconnect) »

Wait, What? It’s Over? Fewer Than 1 In 5 Knew Enrollment Deadline

If you didn’t know when the last day was to enroll in a plan via a Health Insurance Exchange, you’re not alone. Only 18 percent of consumers knew that the enrollment period had ended on February 15, according to a recent survey conducted by Health Insurance Innovations….

        (Read Intelliconnect) »


April 29, 2015


Risk Corridors Adjustment Reduce Effect Of Transitional Policy

The adjustment percentages for the Medical Loss Ratio (MLR) and Risk Corridors Reporting Form for 2014 are listed in a release by CMS. The adjustment percentages are used to mitigate the effect of CMS’s transitional policy on the risk pool for issuers of qualified health plans under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA)…

        (Read Intelliconnect) »


Double-Digit Increases In Pharmacy Costs Expected By 2016

U.S. pharmacy cost increases for active employees and pre- and post-65 retirees are expected to drift into the low double-digits by 2016, according to a recent analysis by Aon Hewitt. Pharmacy cost increases before plan design changes are projected to be 9.5 percent in 2015 and will continue to rise to 10 percent in 2016. Aon Hewitt predicts a similar rate of increase in 2017, with pharmacy costs rising by 10.5 percent…

        (Read Intelliconnect) »


April 28, 2015


Reinsurance Contributions Collections On Target For 2015

As of March 31, 2015, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has collected approximately $8.7 billion in reinsurance contributions for the 2014 benefit year. According to CMS’ Center for Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight (CCIIO), $1 billion more is scheduled to be remitted on or before November 15, 2015. CCIIO noted that because the collection of the reinsurance contributions fell below estimates for benefit year 2014, the first $10 billion collected would be allocated strictly as reinsurance payments to issuers of non-grandfathered reinsurance-eligible individual market plans. Subsequent collection amounts over the $10 billion would be allocated to U.S. Treasury general funds and administrative expenses…

        (Read Intelliconnect) »

Senate Bill Would Protect ACA Subsidies After Court Ruling

If the Supreme Court, in deciding D. King v. S.M. Burwell, (14-114), rules against health care subsidies paid through exchanges under the Patient Protection and Affordability Care Act (ACA), a group of 30 Senate Republicans are backing a bill, the Preserving Freedom and Choice in Health Care, which would allow participants to keep their health plan and subsidies until August 2017. The bill was introduced by Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis…

        (Read Intelliconnect) »


April 27, 2015


Retirement-Readiness Confidence Is Up, But Most Workers Admit They Are Behind Schedule In Planning And Saving

Although confidence is still a long way from the historic highs seen during the 25-year history of the
Retirement Confidence Survey, 22 percent of workers now say they are very confident about having enough money to live comfortably throughout their retirement years. That’s up from 18 percent last year and up from a record low of 13 percent in 2013. Released by the Employee Benefit Research Institute and co-sponsored by the Principal Financial Group, the survey also found that respondents view debt as less of a problem than in years past. Among workers, those reporting debt as a major problem dropped from 20 percent last year to 13 percent this year, while those saying it was not a problem rose from 42 percent last year to 49 percent this year…

        (Read Intelliconnect) »


Federal Reenrollment Numbers Trump Those Of States

Health Insurance Exchanges run by the federal government retained a higher percentage of their 2014 enrollees and enrolled a higher percentage of new enrollees in 2015 than Exchanges run by states, according to a recent report from Avalere Health. Where the federally facilitated Exchanges reenrolled an average of 78 percent of their 2014 enrollees in 2015, the highest percentage of reenrollments in a state-run Exchange was 65 percent in California, according to the report…

        (Read Intelliconnect) »