Spencer’s Benefits NetNews – January 26, 2018

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  • News

    January 26, 2018

    Healthcare savings is predicted to be a bigger priority for consumers in 2018

    Although progress is slow, consumers are becoming more disciplined and value-conscious in healthcare spending and saving decisions, according to results from the 2017 Alegeus Healthcare Consumerism Index. The following five healthcare benefits industry trends have been highlighted by Alegeus as likely to be prevalent in 2018….

            (Read Intelliconnect) »

    Annual wellness visits increase for adolescents

    The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) has been moderately successful in getting more adolescents to see doctors for annual wellness visits, but more needs to be done, according to a study published in JAMA Pediatrics. The study compared with adolescent frequency of annual wellness visits before and after the ACA went into effect in 2010. The results show that rates of preventive wellness visits for adolescents ages 10 to 17 increased from 41 percent pre-ACA to 48 percent post-ACA….

            (Read Intelliconnect) »

    January 25, 2018

    D.C. District Court backs off a little on wellness rulemaking order

    The Washington, D.C., federal district court that ordered the EEOC to file, by August 13, 2018, any new rulemaking that would incorporate the court’s opinion invalidating the agency’s wellness regulations under the ADA and GINA has backed off that deadline directive following the EEOC’s January 16, 2018, unopposed motion asking the court to do so. However, the court was unpersuaded by the EEOC’s argument that it should not retain jurisdiction of the case, AARP v. EEOC, following vacatur of the regulations and remand to the agency….

            (Read Intelliconnect) »

    Nearly 25 percent of full-time employees do not receive benefits

    Nearly 25 percent of full-time employees in the U.S. do not receive benefits, such as health insurance, retirement savings plans, or paid vacation, from their employer, according to research from Clutch, a B2B research firm. The 2018 Employee Benefits Survey found that by not offering a benefits package, companies risk losing out on the top talent during the hiring process….

            (Read Intelliconnect) »

    January 24, 2018

    Congress moves to delay three ACA taxes

    The Senate voted on January 22 to delay three Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) taxes: the medical device excise tax; the health insurance provider fee; and the excise tax on high-dollar health plans. The House followed suit and approved the measure, sending it to President Trump for his signature. The bill also restores funding to the IRS and the federal government, which lapsed after January 19. However, funding is temporary….

            (Read Intelliconnect) »

    EEOC adjusts Title VII, ADA, GINA notice-posting penalties from $534 to $545

    The EEOC has issued a final rule that adjusts from $534 to $545 the monetary penalty for violation of the notice-posting requirements in Title VII, the ADA, and GINA. The adjustment was made in accordance with the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act Improvements Act of 2015, which further amended the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment (FCPIA) Act of 1990….

            (Read Intelliconnect) »

    January 23, 2018

    Agency asks court to butt out of wellness incentive rulemaking

    The EEOC has filed an unopposed motion asking a federal district court in Washington, D.C., to reconsider in part its December 2017 ruling that sent the agency’s ADA and GINA wellness regulations back to the drawing board. The problem, according to the motion, is that the court went beyond its authority when, among other things, it retained jurisdiction after remand and vacatur of the regulations, and gave the EEOC a deadline for filing a proposed rulemaking that would revamp them….

            (Read Intelliconnect) »

    DB plan’s return to overfunded status dooms fiduciary breach claims

    Retirees who filed suit alleging fiduciary breach when their defined benefit plan became underfunded could not continue their claims under ERISA Secs. 502(a) (2) and 502(a) (3) after the plan subsequently became overfunded because they could not show they had suffered an injury, the Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals has ruled. In addition, the court rejected the retirees’ attempts to recover attorney’s fees and costs, concluding the retirees failed to produce evidence that their lawsuit was a material contributing factor in the plan sponsor’s decision to make a voluntary contribution to the plan….

            (Read Intelliconnect) »

    January 22, 2018

    One-third of employers offer incentives to encourage alternative forms of transportation, IFEBP says

    One-third of employers offer incentives to employees who bike, walk, use mass transportation or carpool to work, according to results from the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans’ Transportation Benefits and Incentives: 2017 Survey Results. Survey responses were received from 289 U.S. members of the International Foundation and the International Society of Certified Employee Benefit Specialists (ISCEBS)….

            (Read Intelliconnect) »

    PBGC final regs increase civil penalties for failure to provide certain notices for 2018

    The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) has issued final regulations that adjust the civil monetary penalties provided in ERISA Secs. 4071 and 4302 for inflation. The maximum daily penalty for failing to provide notices or other material information under ERISA Sec. 4071 has increased from $2,097 to $2,140, and the maximum penalty for failure to provide certain multiemployer plan notices under ERISA Sec. 4302 has risen from $279 to $285. The final regulations are effective January 12, 2018, and the increases apply to penalties assessed after January 12, 2018….

            (Read Intelliconnect) »