Spencer’s Benefits NetNews – November 2, 2018

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Featured This Week

New Reports

  • Analysis: Final cash balance plan rules, 10/18 (106.2.-1)

    (Read Intelliconnect) »

  • Analysis: FMLA, 10/18 (327.1.-1)

    (Read Intelliconnect) »

  • Analysis: Tax credit for employer-provided child care, 10/18 (327.2.-9)

    (Read Intelliconnect) »

  • Analysis: The uninsured, 10/18 (422.2.-1)

    (Read Intelliconnect) »

  • News

    Proposed rules would permit HRAs to reimburse individual health insurance costs; employees would own coverage

    The Departments of Treasury, Health and Human Services, and Labor have released proposed rules that they said would expand access to “affordable, quality health care” through changes to regulations under the Public Health Service Act, the Employee Retirement Income Security Act, and the Internal Revenue Code (Code) that govern health reimbursement arrangements (HRAs) and other account-based group health plans. Under the proposed regulatory changes, employers would be able to integrate HRAs with individual health insurance coverage when certain conditions are met. HRAs would be permitted to reimburse employees for the cost of health insurance coverage; employees would own the coverage. The proposed rules would generally be effective on or after January 1, 2020, or for plan years starting on or after January 1, 2020.

            (Read Intelliconnect) »

    DOL proposed rules would create Association Retirement Plans

    The Department of Labor has issued proposed rules that would potentially help small businesses strengthen retirement security in America. The proposed rule would make it easier for small businesses to offer retirement savings plans to their workers through Association Retirement Plans, which would allow small businesses to band together to offer 401(k) plans to their employees.

            (Read Intelliconnect) »

    U.S. employers taking measures to modernize Total Rewards programs

    As the war for talent in today’s tightening labor market intensifies, a majority of U.S. employers are taking steps to modernize their Total Rewards programs, according to a recent survey from Willis Towers Watson.

            (Read Intelliconnect) »

    Health care costs causing stress this enrollment season, study finds

    Sixty-two percent of U.S. adults identify health care costs as a significant source of stress. One in five (17%) adults cannot afford health insurance co-pays, deductibles, and out-of-pocket expenses, including prescription drugs, according to a recent study, Stressed Out: Americans and Healthcare, by nonprofit Transamerica Center for Health Studies® (TCHS). These alarming findings come to light as people across the country prepare for open enrollment, whether through employer-based health insurance, individual insurance, or health insurance Exchanges.

            (Read Intelliconnect) »

    Payments made to HHS do not qualify as an internal revenue tax

    Payments made by a group health plan as required by HHS regulation do not qualify as a tax for the purposes of bringing a refund suit in district court. The Fourth Circuit affirmed a district court’s judgment that it lacked subject matter jurisdiction over a claim brought by a group health plan to recover a payment made to HHS. The appellate court held that the district court’s jurisdiction to hear refund suits applies only to taxes and other sums collected by the Internal Revenue Service under the Internal Revenue Code.

            (Read Intelliconnect) »