Spencer’s Benefits Reports NetNews – November 15, 2013

 

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Featured This Week

New Reports

  • Survey: Monthly Retirement Plan Interest Rates, 11/13 (101.2.-1)
       

(Read Intelliconnect) »

  • Survey: 2013 PBGC Interest Rates, 11/13 (619.5.-51)
       

 

(Read Intelliconnect) »

  • Analysis: Using Plan Assets To Pay Administrative Costs, 11/13 (605.06.-21)
       

 

(Read Intelliconnect) »

  • Analysis: State Mandates For Contraceptive Coverage Before And After Health Reform, 11/13 (402.2.-1)
       

 

(Read Intelliconnect) »

  • Analysis: Eligibility Provisions In Group Health Plans, 11/13 (320.-1)
       

 

(Read Intelliconnect) »


News

November 15, 2013

Allow Flexibility In ACA Reporting Requirements Business Group Urges IRS

Business leaders of leading U.S. companies say the proposed rules for reporting requirements under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) are too complex and costly and are urging the Internal Revenue Service to allow employers more flexibility in meeting those requirements…

(Read Intelliconnect) »

Supreme Court Declines Request By Special Needs Trust To Review ERISA Plan’s Right To Reimbursement

The U.S. Supreme Court has denied a petition by a special needs trust asking whether funds paid into the trust by “bona fide purchasers” on behalf of insured tortfeasors for the benefit of a health plan beneficiary pursuant to a settlement extinguished the health plan’s right to recover in equitable subrogation under ERISA. The case is
Larry Griffin Special Needs Trust v. ACS Recovery Services, Inc. (Dkt. No. 13-182)…

(Read Intelliconnect) »

November 14, 2013

Seventh Circuit Enjoins ACA’s Contraceptive Coverage Mandate For Business Corporation

The contraceptive coverage requirement violates the rights of both individual business owners and closely held business corporations under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA), the Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals has ruled in
Korte v. Sebelius. The threat of a tax or penalty of $100 per employee per day for violation of the requirement imposed a substantial financial burden on both the corporations and their Catholic shareholders. The relationship between the prohibited conduct and the owners’ religion was direct because it was their financial contribution that supported contraception that violated their religious beliefs, not the employees’ choice to use the benefits…

(Read Intelliconnect) »

Nearly Half Of Workers Do Not Know How ACA Will Impact Them

Nearly half of American workers do not feel knowledgeable about how the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) will impact them personally, according to recent research from Colonial Life and Accident Insurance Company…

(Read Intelliconnect) »

November 13, 2013

HHS Awards Funds To Health Care Sites That Can Assist With Marketplace Enrollment

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has awarded $150 million under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) to support 236 new health center sites across the country. HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius stated that, “Health centers are key partners in the improving access to quality, affordable health care services for those who need it most. With new, affordable health insurance options available under the ACA, community health centers also are key partners in helping uninsured residents sign up for health coverage–many of whom have been locked out of the health insurance market for years….”

(Read Intelliconnect) »

No Pretext In Termination Of Employee For Failing To Return To Work After Leave

Finding that none of an employee’s “plethora of arguments” created a genuine fact issue on pretext, the Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals has affirmed a lower court’s grant of summary judgment on her claims that her employer discriminated and retaliated against her in violation of the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) when it terminated her for failing to return to work following an extended leave (Paris v. Sanderson Farms, Inc, 13-20239). For the same reasons, the Fifth Circuit also refused to revive the employee’s claims under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Texas Commission on Human Rights Act (TCHRA)…

(Read Intelliconnect) »

November 12, 2013

Final Regulations On Mental Health And Substance Use Disorder Parity Issued

The Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services (HHS) and the Treasury (Departments) have jointly issued a final rule increasing parity between mental health/substance use disorder benefits and medical/surgical benefits in group and individual health plans. The final regulations will be published in the November 13
Federal Register

(Read Intelliconnect) »

Employers Boosting Efforts To Help Workers Save For Retirement

The continued shift from defined benefit (DB) plans to defined contribution (DC) plans has placed a greater emphasis on employees to take responsibility for their own retirement readiness, according to research from consultant Aon Hewitt. The survey found that employers are increasingly taking bolder actions to help ensure participants achieve greater financial security. Recognizing the vast majority of employees are not prepared to maximize their 401(k) savings potential, employers are making significant changes in plan structure and investments while also increasing the amount of guidance provided to participants…

(Read Intelliconnect) »

November 11, 2013

Process For Recognition As Minimum Essential Coverage Explained

The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ Center for Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight (CCIIO) released a new memorandum in its Insurance Standards Bulletin Series. The memorandum, titled
CCIIO Sub-Regulatory Guidance: Process for Obtaining Recognition as Minimum Essential Coverage, was issued to explain the administrative process to apply for HHS recognition as minimum essential coverage…
(Read Intelliconnect) »

Defined Contribution Plans Continue To Grow

Defined contribution (DC) plans have continued to grow, according to the results of
56th Annual Profit Sharing and 401(k) Survey from the Plan Sponsor Council of America (PSCA). During the last couple of years, participation rates, deferral rates, and company contributions have increased steadily, and are now equal to or higher than they were before the recession, the survey found…

(Read Intelliconnect) »