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Cross-Plan Offsetting Case Triggers Legal Concerns for Plan Sponsors

"[P]lan sponsors should ... fully understand the way in which offsets are occurring under their plan, especially with respect to how this practice could impact their plan participants. Plan sponsors should endeavor to reach a compromise that would allow the TPA to seek overpayment recoveries on behalf of the plan without authorizing the TPA to engage in cross-plan offsets.... Keep in mind that prudent overpayment recovery activities are a legitimate fiduciary requirement under ERISA." [Peterson v. UnitedHealth Group Inc., No. 17-1744 (8th Cir. Jan. 15, 2019)]
Winston & Strawn LLP


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Court Reconsiders Application of Colorado State Ban on Discretionary Clauses Based on Disability Policy Amendments and SPD

"Here, the court found that a document prepared by the policyholder impacted the rights the insurance company attempted to grant to itself in the policy that it drafted. But we've also seen the reverse play out in the context of state bans on discretionary clauses; specifically, in cases where courts have found that a grant of discretion in a Plan document overrides a state ban on discretionary clauses in disability policies." [Ellis v. Liberty Life Assurance Co. of Boston, No. 15-090 (D. Colo. Jan. 15, 2019)]
Kantor & Kantor

IRS Provides Tax Guidance for Parking Fringe Benefits

"Both for-profit and tax-exempt employers that offer parking fringe benefits must determine their cost as set out in Notice 2018-99. For nonexempt employers, the amount will be disallowed as a tax deduction. Tax-exempt employers that offer parking fringe benefits will need to determine the amount that must be included as UBTI and reported on Form 990-T."
Willis Towers Watson

Questions Employees Are Asking in 2019 About ACA Form 1095s

"What is this form I'm receiving? ... Why are you sending it to me? ... What am I supposed to do with this 1095 form? ... What if I get more than one 1095 form? ... What if I did not get a Form 1095-B or a 1095-C? ... I thought the [ACA] requirement to have health insurance was repealed. Do I still need this form?"
International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans [IFEBP]

California Prescription Drug Purchasing Initiative Raises Numerous Questions

"Would [the California Department of Health Care Services (DHCS)] really be able to negotiate better rebates for Medi-Cal than managed care organizations? ... Is the program permissible under federal law, and if so, does it require Trump Administration approval? ... Are changes in California law required? ... Is the initiative permissible under the antitrust laws? ... How would 'the self-insured' receive the benefit of the negotiated discounts?"
Reed Smith LLP

Getting the Most Out of Your Dependent Care Assistance Plan Benefits

"If your child attends daycare or uses before and after school care on a regular basis, you may be able to file a recurring expense claim.... A DCAP can be used for day camps only. Overnight camps do not qualify.... If you can find an approved caregiver, you can use your DCAP benefits for sick child care.... [T]here are some expenses that are not approved."

Benefits in General

[Official Guidance]

Text of IRS Final Regs: Section 199A Qualified Business Income Deduction (PDF)

247 pages. "This document contains final regulations concerning the deduction for qualified business income under section 199A of the Internal Revenue Code.... The regulations also contain an anti-avoidance rule under section 643 of the Code to treat multiple trusts as a single trust in certain cases, which will affect trusts, their grantors, and beneficiaries. This document also requests additional comments on certain aspects of the deduction."
Internal Revenue Service [IRS]

[Official Guidance]

Text of IRS Proposed Regs: Section 199A Qualified Business Income Deduction (PDF)

39 pages. "This document contains proposed regulations concerning the deduction for qualified business income under section 199A of the Internal Revenue Code.... The proposed regulations provide guidance on the treatment of previously suspended losses that constitute qualified business income. The proposed regulations also provide guidance on the determination of the section 199A deduction for taxpayers that hold interests in regulated investment companies, charitable remainder trusts, and split-interest trusts."
Internal Revenue Service [IRS]

[Official Guidance]

Text of IRS Rev. Proc. 2019-11: Determination of W-2 Wages Under Section 199A (PDF)

"This revenue procedure provides methods for calculating W-2 wages... [1] for purposes of section 199A(b)(2) of the Internal Revenue Code which, for certain taxpayers, provides a limitation based on W-2 wages to the amount of the deduction for qualified business income (QBI); and [2] for purposes of section 199A(b)(7), which, for certain specified agricultural and horticultural cooperative patrons, provides a reduction to the section 199A deduction based on W-2 wages."
Internal Revenue Service [IRS]

[Official Guidance]

Text of IRS Notice 2019-07: Section 199A Trade or Business Safe Harbor: Rental Real Estate (PDF)

10 pages. "This notice contains a proposed revenue procedure that provides for a safe harbor under which a rental real estate enterprise will be treated as a trade or business solely for purposes of section 199A of the Internal Revenue Code[.]"
Internal Revenue Service [IRS]

Press Releases

Mercer's Neil Lloyd Appointed EBRI Research Committee Chair
EBRI [Employee Benefit Research Institute]

Most Popular Items in the Previous Issue

2018 Year in Review: Plus What Lies Ahead in 2019 (PDF)
ABD Insurance & Financial Services

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BenefitsLink Health & Welfare Plans Newsletter, ISSN no. 1536-9595. Copyright 2019, 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.

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