Health & Welfare Plans Newsletter

December 2, 2016

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Senior Pension Administrator
Scholz & Friends Enlightened Retirement Group, Inc.
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Qualified Services, Inc
in CA

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N.A. Falcone & Associates, Inc.
in PA

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[Guidance Overview]

Two More New Jersey Towns Pass Paid Sick Leave Ordinances
"The Morristown ordinance took effect on October 4, 2016, and the Plainfield ordinance took effect on July 15, 2016.... [E]mployers that employ 10 or more employees in Morristown or Plainfield must provide those employees with up to 40 hours of paid sick time per year. Employers of fewer than 10 employees must provide up to 24 hours of paid sick time per year to such employees."
Ogletree Deakins

[Advert.]

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Telehealth execs discuss engaging providers & consumers in digital health to optimize ROI & improve population health. Promo Code BLINK2 takes $200 off your registration (May not combine w any other offer. Not valid twd Govt Rate/Workshop Only/Webcast)


How Do Health FSA Carryovers Affect HSA Eligibility?
"Carryovers in a general-purpose health FSA will make an employee ineligible to contribute to an HSA for the entire subsequent plan year, even after the carryover is exhausted and even if the employee does not make or receive new health FSA contributions for that plan year. HSA eligibility should not be adversely affected, however, if the plan permits carryovers but the participant actually has a $0 balance at year-end."
Thomson Reuters / EBIA

Small Plan Exemption for Form 5500 Reporting
"In addition to the removal of the small plan reporting exemption, the Proposed Rules would add a new Schedule J to the Form 5500, which would be required to be filed by all group health plan sponsors (also regardless of size or enrollment number). The new Schedule J would be designed to implement the transparency requirements of the ACA, and to fulfill the Agencies' dual aims of collecting more data from plans and making that data more accessible to participants and regulators."
Corporate Synergies

Health & Welfare Plan Update, December 2016 (PDF)
22 pages. Includes: [1] Top 10 developments, and [2] 2016 Health & Welfare Plans compliance calendar and highlights.
Alston & Bird LLP

Legislation to Improve Mental Health Care for Millions Sails Through House Vote
"The 21st Century Cures Act, which provides funding for biomedical research and aims to speed up drug development, was approved by a vote of 392-26. Republican leaders added a number of other health-related items to the act, including the text of a mental health bill that was approved by the House last summer but which never got a vote in the Senate."
Kaiser Health News

[Advert.]

How to Survive an ACA Audit

Sponsored by Lorman and BenefitsLink

Dec. 13 webinar. Ensure that your policies and procedures mitigate audit inquiries from various federal agencies. Documentation and record retention will be the key to minimizing potential penalties.


[Opinion]

Why Obamacare Repeal and Delay Won't Work
"[C]ongressional Republicans say they want to pass a repeal bill early this year but delay implementation for three years so they can come up with a replacement plan.... They seem to be ignoring the risks in the transition period, particularly because they need insurance companies to provide insurance during the transition.... Generally speaking, many of these leaders in the industry are optimistic over the five-year timeline. But the question is, over the next few years, how do you get there? I think you'll have a lot of plans decide not to participate or participate with extraordinary high rates."
Robert Laszewski and Sarah Kliff, via Vox

Benefits in General

[Official Guidance]

IRS Disaster Relief Notice MN-2016-03 for Victims of Severe Storms, Flooding in Minnesota
"Victims of the severe storms [and] flooding, that took place beginning on September 21, 2016 in parts of Minnesota may qualify for tax relief from the [IRS].... Individuals who reside or have a business in the counties of Blue Earth, Freeborn, Hennepin, Le Sueur, Rice, Steele, and Waseca may qualify for tax relief.... certain deadlines falling on or after September 21, 2016, and before January 31, 2017 are granted additional time to file through January 31, 2017."
Internal Revenue Service [IRS]

[Opinion]

ARA Comments to EBSA on Proposed Revision of Annual Information Return/Reports (Form 5500 Series) (PDF)
"The ARA is concerned that the Proposal significantly underestimates the cost and burden to comply with the reporting requirements and that there is insufficient time to make the technology and procedural updates required for the proposed 2019 plan year effective date."
American Retirement Association [ARA]

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Lois Baker, J.D., President  loisbaker@benefitslink.com
David Rhett Baker, J.D., Editor and Publisher  davebaker@benefitslink.com
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BenefitsLink Health & Welfare Plans Newsletter, ISSN no. 1536-9595. Copyright 2016 BenefitsLink.com, Inc. All materials contained in this newsletter are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of BenefitsLink.com, Inc., or in the case of third party materials, the owner of that content. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content.

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