Health & Welfare Plans Newsletter

May 11, 2017 logo logo
Get Retirement News | Advertise | Unsubscribe | Previous Issues | Search

Employee Benefits Jobs

Employee Benefits Attorney
in OH

Sr. Document Compliance Consultant
in CO, NC, Telecommute

Retirement Plan Administrator
MCF Advisors
in KY

401(k) Compliance Consultant
DWC ERISA Consultants, LLC

Post Your Job

View All Jobs

RSS feed for jobs RSS Feed: All Jobs

Webcasts and Conferences

Voluntary Fiduciary Correction Program Workshop (Webcast)
May 17, 2017 WEBCAST
Employee Benefits Security Administration [EBSA], U.S. Department of Labor

Labor, Employment and Benefits Seminar
May 17, 2017 in ND
Dorsey & Whitney LLP

Get Ready for Paid Family Leave
May 18, 2017 WEBCAST
Strategic Benefit Services

ACA Repeal: Where Things Stand -- And What Lies Ahead
May 24, 2017 WEBCAST
Trucker Huss

Health Benefits Laws Compliance Assistance Seminar
June 7, 2017 in MI
Employee Benefits Security Administration [EBSA], U.S. Department of Labor

Second Annual Forum on Employer Sponsored Benefits
June 8, 2017 WEBCAST
Dorsey & Whitney LLP

Getting It Right - Know Your Fiduciary Responsibilities
June 21, 2017 in IL
Employee Benefits Security Administration [EBSA], U.S. Department of Labor

Gearing Up in the Era of Increased HIPAA Enforcement and Cyber Security Threats
June 22, 2017 WEBCAST
American Bar Association [ABA]

Utilizing Mobile, On-Site and Remote Medical Providers to Reduce Health Care Costs
July 18, 2017 WEBCAST
Lorman Education Services

View All Webcasts and Conferences

Post Your Event


New Topics on the BenefitsLink Message Boards

New Comments and Topics

All Topics, Grouped by Forum

Subscribe Now to This Newsletter (free)

We also publish the BenefitsLink Retirement Plans Newsletter (free): Subscribe Now

ACA Replacement Clears Its First Hurdle: What's Next (PDF)
"[The] Senate's bill ... likely will differ from the AHCA in at least some aspects.... Congress essentially must pass this legislation before moving on to tax reform or any other topic it intends to address with reconciliation. So employers, multiemployer [group health plan] sponsors and other stakeholders can expect to see new legislative developments soon -- potentially before the end of this month."
Trucker Huss


Save $50 use promo code BLINK2 (not valid for webcast)

Sponsored by World Congress

Direct Contracting and Partnerships Strategies Summit. Convening employers & health system executives involved in direct contracting, network strategy/management, and health/wellness to learn and discuss the nuances of developing value-based partnerships.

CBO to Release Estimate for House-Passed Version of AHCA in Two Weeks
"CBO and the staff of the Joint Committee on Taxation [JCT] are in the process of preparing a cost estimate for the House-passed version of the American Health Care Act [AHCA]. CBO anticipates being able to release that estimate early in the week of May 22 and will provide advance notice of the date and time of release before publishing it."
Congressional Budget Office [CBO]

How Changes to Health Insurance Market Rules Would Affect Risk Adjustment (PDF)
"Risk adjustment helps ensure that plans are adequately compensated for the risks they enroll, thereby reducing insurer incentives to avoid high-cost enrollees.... This issue brief ... examines the risk adjustment program implemented under the [ACA] and the implications for the program under different potential changes to current insurance market rules."
Risk Sharing Subcommittee of the American Academy of Actuaries

Aetna Is Latest Health Insurer to Quit Obamacare Markets
"Aetna Inc. will leave the few remaining states where it had been selling Obamacare plans next year, making it the latest health insurer to pull out of the health law ... [T]he decision affects just Delaware and Nebraska. The Hartford, Connecticut-based insurer already said last year it would pull out of 11 states, and in the last month announced plans to exit Iowa and Virginia."

What Characterizes Marketplaces Having One or Two Insurers?
"Median monthly benchmark premiums range from $270 in markets with six or more insurers to $451 in markets with just one insurer in 2017. Likewise, in regions with 6 or more insurers, the median 2017 benchmark premium increase was 5.0% compared to 29.8% in regions with only 1 insurer.... The median population size for rating regions with only one marketplace insurer is 148,000, compared to 1.1 million in rating regions with 6 or more insurers."
Urban Institute


Develop skills, knowledge and expertise with ECFC's certification program

Sponsored by ECFC [Employers Council on Flexible Compensation]

Flexible compensation is constantly evolving as new regulations, laws, and interpretations affect the discipline. Become a leader and take the steps to become certified as a Flexible Compensation Specialist.

AHCA Merits Attention from Industry Stakeholders
"Despite expected Senate revisions, the American Health Care Act poses potentially vast implications across the health care industry.... The repeal or delay of certain taxes would bring relief to some life sciences manufacturers, large health insurance companies, and employers offering high-cost health insurance plans."
Latham & Watkins

Sixth Circuit Extends 'Cat's Paw' Liability Theory to FMLA Retaliation Claims
"[T]he Sixth Circuit has applied the cat's paw theory in a variety of discrimination cases and has assumed, without deciding, that the theory is available in [FMLA] retaliation cases. Now ... a Sixth Circuit panel has held that the cat's paw theory applies to FMLA retaliation claims, recognizing that 'a company's organizational chart does not always accurately reflect its decisionmaking process,' and that sometimes subordinate employees 'may have significant influence over the decisionmaker.' " [Marshall v. The Rawlings Co. LLC, No. 16-5614 (6th Cir. Apr. 20, 2017)]

New Georgia Law Allows Employees to Use Sick Leave for Care of Family Members
"On May 8, 2017, Georgia Governor Nathan Deal signed into law a new statute requiring certain employers to allow their employees to use up to five days of their available paid sick leave to care for immediate family members. This new law will take effect on July 1, 2017.... The new law does not contain any enforcement or penalty provisions and states that it shall not be construed to create a new cause of action against an employer."
Kilpatrick Townsend

Voluntary Benefits Gaining Popularity Among Employers
"[N]early half of large employers now offer at least one of three common voluntary income protection benefits: accident, critical illness and/or hospital indemnity insurance. That's an increase of over 30 percent year over year."

$2.4M HIPAA Settlement Warns Health Plans and Providers Against Sharing Medical Info with Media, Others
"Healthcare providers, health plans, healthcare clearinghouses and their business associates (Covered Entities) can't disclose the name or other protected health care information about a patient in press releases or other announcements without prior authorization from the patient. That's the clear lesson Covered Entities should learn from the $2.4 million ... that the largest not-for-profit health system in Southeast Texas ... is paying to settle charges it violated the [HIPAA] Privacy Rule by issuing a press release with the name and other protected health information (PHI) about a patient without the patient's prior HIPAA-compliant authorization[.]"
Solutions Law Press

Benefits in General

Eighth Circuit Jimmies the Lid on Pandora's Fiduciary Duty Box
"In an opinion that may result in increasingly complex ERISA benefits litigation, the Eighth Circuit has allowed a breach of fiduciary duty claim premised on alleged faulty claims handling practices to proceed in conjunction with a claim for benefits.... Given how out of step Jones is with longstanding practice, it is likely that Aetna will seek en banc review, or even file a petition of certiorari with the Supreme Court. Nevertheless, while this case continues to work its way through the courts, it is likely that plaintiffs will rely on Jones in justifying pairing routine claims for benefits with claims for equitable relief." [Jones v. Aetna Life Ins. Co., No. 16-1714 (8th Cir. May 8, 2017)]
Seyfarth Shaw LLP

Executive Compensation
and Nonqualified Plans

ACA Repeal and Replacement, Take Two: Impact on Stock Compensation
"The AHCA would eliminate the Net Investment Income Tax: a 3.8% Medicare surtax on investment income, including capital gains, dividends, and interest. Meanwhile, an amendment to the House bill would delay until 2023 the repeal of the Additional Medicare Tax (0.9%) on ordinary income ... Currently ... companies must withhold the 0.9% additional Medicare tax on any type of pay, including that from stock compensation ... when an employee's wages for the year are more than $200,000. While the legislation would remove that requirement, it would not do so until after 2022."

Further Clarification on Director Independence in Litigation
"During the last five years, while plaintiffs and the Delaware courts have been expanding the litigation risks for the compensation decisions of non-employee directors, the Delaware courts also have been expanding their scrutiny of the disinterested status of directors.... [In] many (and, probably, soon to be more) of the recent cases that involve executive or director compensation, the independence of non-employee directors is at the core of many of the defendants' motions to dismiss."
Winston & Strawn LLP

Connect   LinkedIn logo   Twitter logo   Facebook logo, Inc.
1298 Minnesota Avenue, Suite H
Winter Park, Florida 32789
(407) 644-4146

Lois Baker, J.D., President
David Rhett Baker, J.D., Editor and Publisher
Holly Horton, Business Manager

BenefitsLink Health & Welfare Plans Newsletter, ISSN no. 1536-9595. Copyright 2017, 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, Inc., or in the case of third party materials, the owner of those materials. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notices from copies of the content.

Links to web sites other than and are offered as a service to our readers; we were not involved in their production and are not responsible for their content.

Unsubscribe | Privacy Policy