Spencer’s Benefits Reports NetNews – August 26, 2016

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Featured This Week


New Reports




August 26, 2016


Top source of financial stress is retirement readiness, even for Millennials

Saving enough money for a comfortable retirement is the most common financial stress inducer for people of all ages, according to results of a new survey from Schwab Retirement Plan Services, Inc. The survey also reveals that most people view the 401(k) as a “must-have” workplace benefit and believe they would benefit from professional saving, investment and financial guidance. Most respondents said they would welcome a financial wellness program in their workplace….

(Read Intelliconnect) »

Most plan sponsors would recommend their financial advisor to another employer

Nearly nine in ten employers that sponsor a retirement plan would recommend their financial advisor to another employer, according to a new study from Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Co. (MassMutual). Specifically, 88 percent of plan sponsors would recommend their advisor, with 37 percent “very likely” to do so. Only 10 percent said they were unlikely to make a recommendation, according to the study….

(Read Intelliconnect) »

August 25, 2016


Text: IRS, Rev. Proc. 2016-43

(Read Intelliconnect) »

2016 monthly national average premium provided

The IRS has issued guidance providing the 2016 monthly national average premium for qualified health plans that have a bronze level of coverage for taxpayers to use in determining their maximum individual shared responsibility payment under Code Sec. 5000A(c)(1)(B). An explanation of the methodology used to determine the monthly national average premium amount also is provided….

(Read Intelliconnect) »

Uninsured disproportionately poor, young, Latino, and small business workers

Uninsured adults are disproportionately poor, young, Latino, and employed by small businesses, according to recent research from the Commonwealth Fund. Since the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) went into effect, the number of uninsured individuals has fallen to historic lows—an estimated reduction of 20 million individuals. However, 24 million individuals still lack coverage. The Commonwealth Fund conducted the survey to ascertain the makeup of those remaining uninsured individuals and to determine why they are not insured….

(Read Intelliconnect) »

August 24, 2016

Humana authorized to sue insurer as Medicare secondary payer

A private insurer offering a Medicare Advantage (MA) plan does have a cause of action against primary insurers to seek reimbursement as a secondary payer under the Medicare Secondary Payer (MSP) Act. The Eleventh Circuit affirmed a district court order granting summary judgment in favor of Humana Medical Plan, Inc., an MA plan provider, that brought suit against Western Heritage Insurance Company, a liability insurer that settled personal injury claims that arose from a slip-and-fall accident involving one of Humana’s MA plan enrollees….

(Read Intelliconnect) »

Higher enrollment leads to lower costs, reflects healthier risk pool

Per-member-per-month (PMPM) claims in the individual Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) market fell by 0.1 percent from 2014 to 2015, compared to an increase in per-employee costs of 3 to 6 percent in the broader market. According to CMS Center for Consumer Information & Insurance Oversight (CCIIO) analysis of reinsurance payments data, higher enrollment correlated with lower costs, suggesting that the risk pool is becoming healthier. The CCIIO suggested that the data reflect “moderate but real progress toward a broader risk pool….”

(Read Intelliconnect) »

August 23, 2016


Survey suggests Millennial attitudes making America’s vacation problem worse

Work martyrs — employees who skip vacation to show complete dedication to their job, are worried they will be seen as replaceable, feel guilty for using time off, and believe they alone can do the job — are overwhelmingly Millennials. This group of workers is the most likely generation to forfeit time off, even though they earn the least amount of vacation days, with 43 percent of work martyrs being Millennials compared to just 29 percent of all workers. Millennials stay at work because they feel more fear and greater guilt about taking time away from the office than any other generation. These are findings from Project: Time Off’s new report, The Work Martyr’s Cautionary Tale: How the Millennial Experience Will Define America’s Vacation Culture….

(Read Intelliconnect) »

IRS issues September 2016 AFRs

The September 2016 short-term, mid-term, and long-term applicable federal interest rates (AFRs) have been issued by the IRS. The September mid-term 175 percent AFR (Annual) rate, used to calculate interest charged to the funding standard account for underpayments of quarterly contributions under Code Sec. 412(m), is 2.15 percent….

(Read Intelliconnect) »

Health care costs for couples in retirement rise to $260,000

A 65-year-old couple retiring in 2016 will need an estimated $260,000 to cover health care costs in retirement, according to recent research from Fidelity. The Retiree Health Care Cost Estimate noted that this is a 6 percent increase over last year’s estimate of $245,000….

(Read Intelliconnect) »

August 22, 2016

Health coaching tops employees’ wish list for achieving wellness goals

More than one-third of employees list personal health coaching as their top motivator in reaching wellness goals, according to a new Tell It Now(SM) survey from ComPsych® Corporation. Thirty-seven percent of employees said a personal coach would most motivate them to achieve wellness goals, while just 10 percent said technology (apps and fitness devices) would most help them reach goals. ComPsych provides fully integrated EAP, behavioral health, wellness, work-life, HR, FMLA and absence management services under its GuidanceResources® brand….

(Read Intelliconnect) »

Hardship exemption given to individuals missing 2016 HCTC premium help

Individuals who qualify for the Health Coverage Tax Credit (HCTC) but are not enrolled in HCTC-qualifying health insurance coverage may claim a hardship exemption through a limited interim process for the second half of 2016, since the full process will not be available until January 2017. In a guidance document, CMS’ Center for Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight (CCIIO) provided information about the hardship exemption….

(Read Intelliconnect) »

Most companies paying at least 5 percent more for health insurance premiums in 2016

The majority of employers (54 percent) are paying at least 5 percent more for employee health insurance this year, with nearly one in four suffering from increases of at least 10 percent, according to a survey of more than 3,000 U.S. employers. Yet a decisive 67 percent agree that medical and pharmacy benefits are the cornerstone of their employee benefits package, and therefore an important tool to recruit and retain talent in a tightening labor market. These findings are part of the 2016 Arthur J. Gallagher & Co. (Gallagher) Benefits Strategy & Benchmarking Survey. The annual study covers major benefit categories including human capital strategies; medical; wellness; employee communications and engagement; dental; life insurance; long-term care and voluntary; leaves and disability; and retirement….

(Read Intelliconnect) »