Health & Welfare Plans Newsletter

April 17, 2019

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Jobs

Saver Success Specialist
Ubiquity Retirement and Savings
in San Francisco CA / AZ / CO / FL / IL / MA / NC / NJ / NV / NY / OR / TX / Telecommute

Defined Benefits Client Relationship Manager
Goldleaf Partners
in MN / Telecommute

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Webcasts, Conferences

12th Annual Employer Leadership Summit
April 17, 2019 in MN
Minnesota Health Action Group

New Tax Credit for Paid Family and Medical Leave
May 3, 2019 WEBCAST
Clear Law Institute

Employee Benefit Plans Conference
May 6, 2019 in LA
AICPA

HSA University
July 11, 2019 WEBCAST
Ascensus

►See 171 Upcoming Webcasts and Conferences

►See 1517 Recorded Webcasts


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[Guidance Overview]

Westchester County Issues FAQs and Notice of Employee Rights as Earned Sick Leave Law Goes into Effect

"In their brevity, the Employer and Employee FAQs and Notice of Employee Rights provide incomplete and, as a result, confusing information on several issues.... [T]he Law does not address whether the employee threshold is based only on employees working in Westchester County [New York], or if, instead, employers must also count employees at other locations in New York State -- or nationwide -- in determining whether they meet the threshold for triggering the paid leave mandate."
Epstein Becker Green

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[Guidance Overview]

Paid Family Leave Rule Takes Effect Soon in DC

"Starting July 1, a new tax will be assessed to employers, based on DC employees' gross wages at the rate of 0.62% of payroll. The cost cannot be deducted from employee pay.... [E]mployees are eligible for benefits if their employment is based in DC, they regularly work in DC, and they do not spend more than 50% of their time in another jurisdiction. Self-employed individuals may also benefit if they opt to pay into the PFL Fund."
Keller Benefit Services

Small Businesses Increased Average QSEHRA Contributions in 2018

"Small businesses increased their offerings through the qualified small employer health reimbursement arrangement (QSEHRA) in 2018 by allocating an average $297 a month to single employees and $445 to employees with a family.... Twenty-six percent of single employees and 10 percent of employees with a family received the federal maximum monthly allowance of $420.83 and $854.16, respectively.... Employees used an average 78 percent of their QSEHRA allowances for the year. One-third used their entire allowance amount."
Wolters Kluwer; free registration required

Eliminating Drug Rebates: How Might Access and Pricing be Affected?

"In a rebate-less world, companies could be forced to compete more directly on value. This might require a shift in strategy toward more robust evidence generation, the development of support services, and greater competition in value-based contracts."
Deloitte

DOJ Takes Aim at Telemedicine with Indictments in $1.2 Billion Medicare Fraud Scheme

"The recently unsealed indictments allege a broad national and international scheme in which telemarketers and telemedicine companies were paid for their patient referrals. Paying for Medicare patient referrals is a clear violation of the federal Anti-Kickback Statute. These prosecutions confirm that the government will always view prohibited referral arrangements, cross-referral arrangements, and other incentives between telemedicine providers and physicians as highly problematic."
Morris, Manning, & Martin, LLP

ACA Marketplace Open Enrollment Numbers Reveal the Impact of State-Level Policy and Operational Choices on Performance

"[HHS] reported a nearly 4 percent decline in plan selections in the federally facilitated marketplace in 2019, but overall plan selections reported by state-based marketplaces stayed steady. This discrepancy suggests that certain policies or operational features of the state-based marketplaces may have made a difference in the number of people enrolling."
The Commonwealth Fund

The Consumer Benefits Coverage Index: New Way to Measure H&W Benefits

"CBCI is an indicator of consumer spending across three key categories of voluntary benefit products: health, wealth and lifestyle. Each category is scored on a scale from 0 to 100 -- with an aggregate score range of 0 to 300 -- reflecting the average amounts spent by a consumer in these categories relative to their peers.... While the typical U.S. consumer's health category CBCI score lies in the optimal spending range, wealth and lifestyle scores are both in the low range -- indicating out-of-balance spending in these categories."
Benefitfocus

Benefits in General

DOL 2018 Enforcement Stats Send Wake-up Call for Complacent Fiduciaries

"The [DOL] recovered $1.6 billion in 2018. There were 1329 civil investigations, 64% of which resulted in a monetary recovery or corrective action. 111 of these went into litigation. There were also 268 criminal investigations.... What are some of the issues that might be uncovered by the [DOL]?"
Cohen & Buckmann, P.C.

Press Releases

Most Popular Items in the Previous Issue

Non-Federal Governmental Plans: An Introduction (PDF)
Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services [CMS], U.S. Department of Health and Human Services [HHS]

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