Health & Welfare Plans Newsletter

June 20, 2017

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Webcasts and Conferences

Sun Life Summit 2017 - Buckle Up: Riding The ACA Rollercoaster
RECORDED
Sun Life Financial

IRA Update 2017
June 21, 2017 WEBCAST
Collin W. Fritz & Associates, Ltd.

Basics of Traditional IRAs - Establishing / Contributions
June 28, 2017 WEBCAST
Collin W. Fritz & Associates, Ltd.

Health Benefits Law Compliance Assistance Seminar
July 26, 2017 in AR
Employee Benefits Security Administration [EBSA], U.S. Department of Labor

Form 5500 Workshop
August 21, 2017 in WI
FIS Relius Education

ERISA Workshop
August 22, 2017 in WI
FIS Relius Education

Employee Ownership Management
October 15, 2017 in CA
Beyster Institute

2017 Executive Compensation Conference
November 7, 2017 in NY
Conference Board, The

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[Guidance Overview]

Mental Health Parity Form Would Assist Participants in Requesting Plan Documents
"In introductory language, the form contains a high-level overview of the MHPAEA's requirements, including the type of financial requirements and treatment limits that are subject to mental health parity. The form notes that plans must provide individuals certain plan documents addressing their benefits (including benefit coverage limits) on request, and within 30 days of when the plan receives the request."
Thomson Reuters Practical Law

[Advert.]

All businesses are at risk for fraud Find out how to prevent it

Sponsored by International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans [IFEBP]

The Fraud Prevention Institute for Employee Benefit Plans will uncover the many areas where fraud can occur, how to detect it and preventative measures to implement. Attendees will receive practical tools and resources to minimize and prevent fraud.


HSA Questions for Employers to Consider
"[1] Investment threshold.... [2] Who chooses the investment lineup? ... [3] What should be the risk profile of the HSA investment lineup? ... [4] What is the risk and reward of offering the option of a self-directed brokerage? ... [6] Does it make sense to mirror the investments in the HSA with that of the company's 401k?"
401K Specialist

Non-Delay of DOL Fiduciary Conflict of Interest Rule Has Impact on HSA Custodians and Trustees
"Despite the transition relief, DOL appears to expect some diligence to ensure compliance with the Impartial Conduct Standards.... [T]he DOL expects 'compliance with the Impartial Conduct Standards between June 9, 2017 and January 1, 2018, will be substantial, even if there is some reduction in compliance relative to the baseline.' However, the DOL 'is uncertain about the magnitude of this reduction and will consider this line of questions as part of its review'."
Alston & Bird, LLP, via Employers Council on Flexible Compensation [ECFC]

Replacing ACA? Hard. Keeping HSAs? No Problem.
"The AHCA eliminates some of the provisions in the ACA that adversely affected HSAs. For example, the ACA placed a restriction on reimbursing over-the-counter drugs by an HSA; the AHCA eliminates that restriction. The AHCA rolls back the tax for HSA distributions not used for qualified medical expenses to 10%, which were previously 20% under ACA. In addition to repealing provisions of the ACA that adversely affected HSAs, the AHCA adds new provisions that will increase the attractiveness of having a high deductible health plan and contributing to an HSA."
Briggs Matsko, via Employee Benefit Adviser

Sole ACA Insurer in Most Iowa Counties to Hike Premiums by 43.5 Percent
"Medica's decision means every county in Iowa will have at least one insurer on the exchanges next year.... Because of the uncertainty surrounding ObamaCare, Medica will ask for 43.5 percent increases in its premiums, however. 'Rate increases of 43 percent are not sustainable long-term,' [Georff Bartsh, Medica's vice president of individual and family business] said."
The Hill

[Advert.]

Online Learning Course: HSA and HRA Basics - Discount for BenefitsLink readers

Sponsored by International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans [IFEBP]

This e-learning course will provide an in-depth look at HSA and HRA programs as well as how these programs interact with an HCFSA. Use code BL2017 for 15% discount - good through July 31.


[Opinion]

Savings Reported by CMS Do Not Measure True ACO Savings
"While we can observe actual spending for ACO beneficiaries, ... it's very hard to know what would have been spent if ACOs did not exist. It is important to avoid using the [CMS] benchmarks to evaluate ACO savings because benchmarks are constructed with policy goals in mind.... Using the benchmark as the measure of success, analysts have concluded, for example, that CMS actually lost money (on the order of $200 million) in the ACO program and that it was a bad deal for CMS. Contrast this with a conclusion based on the use of a counterfactual designed for research purposes (and based on regional spending trends):"
Health Affairs

Benefits in General

[Official Guidance]

Text of EBSA Request for Nominations to the 2018 ERISA Advisory Council
"The terms of five members of the [Advisory Council on Employee Welfare and Pension Benefit Plans (the ERISA Advisory Council)] expire at the end of this year. The groups or fields they represent are as follows: [1] employee organizations; [2] employers; [3] corporate trust; [4] investment management; and [5] the general public.... [N]otice is hereby given that any person or organization desiring to nominate one or more individuals for appointment to the [ERISA Advisory Council] to represent any of [these] groups or fields ... may submit nominations [which] must be received on or before August 1, 2017."
Employee Benefits Security Administration [EBSA], U.S. Department of Labor [DOL]

Tear Down the Silos Between HSAs and 401(k)s
"HSAs have triple tax advantages. While funds contributed to either an HSA or a traditional 401(k) are excluded from income taxes, HSA contributions, up to annual limits, are also excluded from FICA and FUTA payroll taxes.... [If] you save your health care receipts in a file today, then during retirement you can withdraw HSA funds tax-free against those years-old receipts, which can turn the HSAs into a fund to pay for more than just future health care expenses."
Society for Human Resource Management [SHRM]

Press Releases

Court Orders Florida Manufacturer to Repay Profit-Sharing Plan
Employee Benefits Security Administration [EBSA], U.S. Department of Labor

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

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