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Health & Welfare Plans Newsletter

October 26, 2010

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Join the nation's top retirement services marketing, sales, administration and record keeping professionals at the SPARK Forum. Gain insights into the latest industry trends. Attend sessions designed specifically for TPAs, Advisors and RIAs. Participate in interactive sessions on marketing, operations, investments and distribution issues, and network with peers from national banks, insurance companies, mutual fund complexes, investment firms, third party administrators, benefit consulting organizations and financial advisory firms.

[Guidance Overview]
Additional Details on Reimbursement Exclusions in Early Retiree Reinsurance Program
Excerpt: "[Procedure Codes Ineligible for Reimbursement] contains a detailed listing of Current Procedural Terminology . . . codes and Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System . . . codes that represent items and services that are excluded from reimbursement under the ERRP . . . ."
(Wolters Kluwer)

[Guidance Overview]
ERRP Claims Submission Process Goes Live (PDF)
2 pages. Excerpt: "Beginning [October 25, 2010], plan sponsors with approved applications are able to report costs and request reimbursement on the ERRP site."
(Buck Consultants)

[Guidance Overview]
Compliance Issues for Retaining a Health Plan's Grandfathered Status under Health Care Reform (PDF)
3 pages. Excerpt: "Any existing health plan that had at least one person enrolled as of March 23, and continues to enroll someone after such date, constitutes a 'grandfathered' health plan."
(New Jersey Law Journal via Proskauer Rose LLP)

[Guidance Overview]
What Health Care Reforms Apply to 'Essential Health Benefits'?
Excerpt: "This Update summarizes what is known so far about essential health benefits, what remains uncertain until regulators issue guidance, and what steps employers can take to ensure their plans comply."
(Mercer LLC)

Consumer-Driven Health Care: What Is It, and What Does It Mean for Employees and Employers?
Excerpt: "Some employers are considering the switch to consumer-driven health plans (CDHPs) in order to reduce the cost of providing health insurance benefits to their employees. Because CDHPs generally have lower premiums, they might be a popular choice for some employees."
(U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)

Honeywell Stops Offering Some Retirees Group Coverage
Excerpt: "Beginning Jan. 1, 2011, Honeywell will transition some retirees to an individual market plan from company coverage, Honeywell said in an e-mail. Affected retirees must enroll in a new individual plan to have Medicare supplemental coverage after Dec. 31, 2010."
(Business Insurance)

Conflict Over Health Benefits Brochure Required by Health Reform
Excerpt: "The little-noticed provision in the health reform law calls for insurers to outline their health insurance plans on a standardized, four-page form with information about costs, benefits and definitions of commonly used terms."
(Capitol News Company LLC)

Seven Keys to Evaluating the Return on Your Wellness Program
Excerpt: "1) Use a variety of methodologies when determining ROI. For instance, some methodologies use the matching technique used by HealthFitness; others look at utilization rates or trends."
(Thompson Publishing Group Inc.)

Health Care Reform and Employers: Next Steps (PDF)
2 pages. Excerpt: "In the coming years, employers will need to think about levels of benefits to offer, how to control costs and manage employee health, various new reporting requirements."
(Milliman)

[Opinion]
Death, Taxes, and Health Care Costs
Excerpt: "Ultimately, the rise in health care spending affects cash flow and market values for all companies. While some firms are cutting back on their exposure by eliminating health care benefits for retired employees who may purchase private plans, the bill for the active workforce remains a large, often unpredictable expense, unlike that of pensions having a defined contribution plan."
(Forbes.com)

[Opinion]
Letters to the Editor: ObamaCare Encourages Employers to Drop Insurance
Excerpt: "Tennessee Gov. Philip Bredesen makes a persuasive case that public and private employers will be sorely tempted to eliminate employee health coverage once ObamaCare subsidies kick in and insurance exchanges are fully operational . . . ."
(The Wall Street Journal)




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Benefits in General; Executive Compensation

[Guidance Overview]
Proposed SEC Rules on Dodd-Frank's Executive Compensation Shareholder Approval Rules (PDF)
5 pages. Excerpt: "[P]ublic companies should be carefully considering (1) how to refine their 2011 CD&As and tabular disclosures to defuse issues that could trigger shareholder or proxy advisory firm criticism, and (2) what, if any, changes to golden parachutes should be made in 2011 so as to secure shareholder approval."
(Paul, Hastings, Janofsky & Walker LLP)

[Guidance Overview]
'A Groovy Risk Assessment 'Step-by-Step Action Plan' Chart' to Address Compensation Policies and Practices
Excerpt: "The chart sets forth 20 possible steps that a corporation might take to perform efficiently and effectively the risk required by the SEC - and demanded by shareholder advisory group[s]."
(Michael S. Melbinger via Winston & Strawn LLP)

[Guidance Overview]
SEC Proposes Say-on-Pay Rules
Excerpt: "New SEC proposed rules would implement the Dodd-Frank Act's say-on-pay mandates for nonbinding shareholder votes on executive pay, the frequency of executive pay votes and golden parachutes."
(Mercer LLC)

Treasury Moving to Electronic Payroll Savings Bonds
Excerpt: "The U.S. Department of the Treasury has ended the sale of paper U.S. Savings Bonds through employer-sponsored payroll plans, effective September 30, 2010, for federal employees."
(PLANSPONSOR.com)


Webcasts and Conferences

Advanced Pension Conference - Orlando 2011
in Florida on February 9, 2011
presented by SunGard Relius

Best Practices for Wellness Programs: How to Motivate Employees to Make Lifestyle Changes
Nationwide on November 16, 2010
presented by Thompson Interactive

How New Health Care Regulations Will Affect Consumer-Driven Health
Nationwide on November 30, 2010
presented by Thompson Interactive

Managing Risk and Delivering a Secure Retirement - Successfully
in Maryland on November 4, 2010
presented by Worldwide Employee Benefits Network (WEB) - Baltimore Chapter


Press Releases

New Report: Social Networking Can Drive Down Health Costs
Healthcare Performance Management Institute


Newly Posted Employee Benefits Jobs

Enrolled Actuary
for Rapidly Growing Retirement Plan Recordkeeping and Administration Firm
in NJ

401(k) Advisor
for Retirement Plan Advisory Firm
in CA, IL, NY

VP, Sales Strategic Development
for Prudential
in CT, NJ

Plan Administrator
for Pratas, Smith & Moore, LLC
in TX




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