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September 23, 2010

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No matter how benefits-savvy your employees may be, today's health care environment can confuse the most sophisticated consumer. That's why companies large and small use BeneCom for their benefits communication. We know benefits and we understand what employees need to know to make them work - for themselves and for you. And while we're at it, we make your life a little easier, too.

For more information visit our site or call (860) 674-2626, Ext. 2001


[Guidance Overview]
Wellness Programs: The Clash Between GINA And Health Care Reform
Excerpt: "GINA established certain roadblocks to the ability of a health plan or an employer to administer wellness programs, in the interest of protecting genetic information."
(Pepper Hamilton LLP)

[Guidance Overview]
Video Explains What The Affordable Care Act Will Mean for You And Your Family
Excerpt: "Many Americans are confused about what the Affordable Care Act will mean for their families. The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation produced a video to explain the new law."
(U.S. House of Representatives, Committee on Education and Labor)

[Guidance Overview]
Enforcement Grace Period for Key Aspects of New Claims And Appeals Rules And Additional Rules on Grandfathering, Age 26 Dependent Coverage, Highly Compensated Employees, And Other PPACA Requirements
Excerpt: "The interim guidance, titled DOL Technical Release 2010-2, provides that the enforcement grace period will run until July 1, 2011."
(Groom Law Group)

[Guidance Overview]
Agencies Release Additional Guidance on Affordable Care Act Implementation Issues
Excerpt: "The agencies state that their approach to implementation will focus on assisting plans and issuers, rather than penalizing them, that are working diligently and in good faith to understand and comply with the new law. This includes providing transition periods, grace periods, safe harbors, and other policies, as appropriate. The agencies also state that final regulations are expected to be published beginning in 2011."
(Hewitt Associates)

[Guidance Overview]
New Group Health Plan Internal Claims and Appeals and External Review Procedures Created by PPACA (PDF)
Excerpt: "The interim final regulations issued by the Agencies with regard to rescissions define a rescission as any retroactive cancellation of coverage other than a termination of coverage for non-payment of premiums. A rescission is permitted only in the case of fraud or intentional misrepresentation of a material fact. If a plan is otherwise permitted to rescind coverage, it must provide 30 days' advance notice."
(Alston+Bird)

[Guidance Overview]
Important Health Care Reform Guidance Released on Age 26 Rules and Grandfathered Plan Status (PDF)
3 pages. Excerpt: "Recent guidance contains an important new clarification of the age 26 rules that plan sponsors may wish to consider as they prepare for open enrollment. In addition, the guidance provides clarifications on how plans retain grandfather status in certain situations involving fully insured coverage and multiemployer plans."
(Buck Consultants)

Start Planning for New W-2 Reporting Requirement Now
Excerpt: "[E]mployers [will need to] report the value of the health insurance they provide to an employee on the employee's Form W-2. This requirement is effective for 2011, which means the information will need to be included in W-2s issued in Jan. 2012. But IRS regulations contain a 'quirk' that requires employers to be prepared for this new requirement much sooner. A former employee may request a W-2 at any time during the calendar year . . . ."
(Miller Johnson)

Insurers Scramble to Comply With New Rules
Excerpt: "Insurers are cutting administrative staff to lower overhead costs, investing in big technology upgrades and training employees to field the expected influx of customer inquiries."
(New York Times; free registration required)

[Opinion]
How Seniors Will Pay for ObamaCare | National Center for Policy Analysis
Excerpt: "Insurers, we are being told, will no longer be able to impose annual limits or lifetime caps on benefits, and they will face a higher standard before they can drop anyone's coverage. Children will be guaranteed access to insurance, regardless of health condition. And there is more to come in the future. Yet the administration is strangely silent about who will bear the cost of these benefits."
(National Center for Policy Analysis)





Webcasts and Conferences

HITECH Compliance Check: What Plan Sponsors and TPAs Should Be Doing Now
Nationwide on October 21, 2010
presented by EBIA / Thomson Reuters


Press Releases


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