Health & Welfare Plans Newsletter

October 3, 2019 logo logo
Search   ·   Past Issues   ·   Get Message Boards Digest   ·   Get Retirement News

Job Openings

401(k) / Pension Administrator

The MandMarblestone Group, LLC
Philadelphia PA / Telecommute

Benefits Specialist

Blue Benefits Consulting
Columbus OH

Manager of Compliance and Operation

Retirement Plan Consulting Firm
Pasadena CA

Compliance Analyst

Empower Retirement
Greenwood Village CO / WI / Telecommute

Employee Benefits Investigator

Employee Benefits Security Administration [EBSA]
Pasadena CA / Telecommute

Retirement Plan Regional Director

Retirement Plan Consultants
NC / Telecommute

Pension Plan Administrator

DeMars Pension Consulting Services, Inc.
Overland Park KS

►See All Jobs

►Post a Job

Webcasts, Conferences


New Topics on the BenefitsLink Message Boards

New Comments and Topics

All Topics, Grouped by Forum

This Newsletter:
Subscribe Now

BenefitsLink Retirement Plans Newsletter:
Subscribe Now

Message Boards Digest:
Subscribe Now

[Guidance Overview]

ACA Numbers and Limits 2014-2020 (PDF)

Chart includes adjusted dollar amounts for: [1] Applicable Large Employer (ALE) Shared Responsibility Penalty (IRC Section 4980H, Forms 1094-C & 1095-C); [2] Individual Shared Responsibility Penalty (IRC Section 5000A, Form 8965); [3] Premium Tax Credits (IRC Section 36B, Form 8962); [4] Group Health Insurance Reforms (IRC Section 9815 & Section 4980D, Form 8928); [5] Qualified Small Employer Health Reimbursement Account Contribution Limits (IRC Section 9831(d); and [6] Health Savings Accounts (IRC Section 223, Form 8889).
Kaufman & Canoles, P.C.


Rising Cost of Commuting: Developing a Transportation Benefits Plan

Sponsored by Lorman and BenefitsLink

Oct. 17 webinar covers the basics of providing employees with options and what you need to do to save money, keep employees happy, and reduce your environmental footprint.BenefitsLink discount.

[Guidance Overview]

Editor's Pick 2020 Premium Tax Credit Quick Reference Chart (PDF)

"[1] Locate line where estimated 2019 household income and household size intersect. [2] First column shows household percentage of Federal Poverty Line -- if between 100% and 400% continue. [3] Second column shows percentage of household income required [to] purchase 2nd lowest cost Silver coverage in Marketplace. [4] 'CSR AV' column shows resulting Actuarial Value after Cost Sharing Reductions applied (otherwise standard 70%). [5] 'Monthly contribution' = contribution percentage x household income divided by 12."
Kaufman & Canoles, P.C.

[Guidance Overview]

Genetic Testing May Include 'Medical Expenses' for Purposes of FSA Reimbursement

"The IRS has ruled, in Private Letter Ruling 201933005, that portions of the cost of a genetic testing service may be considered medical expenses and may, therefore, be reimbursed by a health care Flexible Spending Account (FSA).... [T]he IRS said the employee may use any reasonable method to value and allocate the cost of the DNA health services between medical care services (such as health assessment) and non-medical services (such as providing certain information with regards to ancestry)."
The Wagner Law Group

Walmart to Test New Health Care Services for Workers

"Walmart is rolling out a health care pilot program for its employees that will come up with a curated list of high quality providers but offer fewer choices than under the current plan. ... Walmart will help employees connect with local doctors in areas like primary care, cardiology and obstetrics. It is working with ... Embold Health, which will cull through vast amounts of data from public and private insurance plans to come up with recommended providers based on effectiveness and cost-efficiency. Walmart will in turn use that data to curate a list for employees."
Associated Press

What Am I Doing Wrong? Common FMLA Mistakes

"While employers may not discourage legitimate FMLA use, employers can (and should) investigate suspected employee abuse of FMLA leave.... [J]ust one stray comment can undo an otherwise effective investigation into FMLA abuse."
Jackson Lewis P.C.

Post-Employment Benefits in New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut: The Case for Reform (PDF)

20 pages. "This report explores the complexities of OPEB, particularly in New York State, New York City, Connecticut, and New Jersey. It also considers measures that governments can take to limit their OPEB risks -- ranging from providing inflation-indexed, health-care premium subsidies to switching to a subsidy-free OPEB plan. These kinds of reforms are like switching from a defined-benefit pension plan to a cash-balance plan. They mitigate risk to the employer while protecting the employer's ability to offer employee benefits without, in the case of the public sector, threatening core public services."
Manhattan Institute

Trump to Unveil Order Aiming to Boost Medicare Health Program, Woo Seniors

"The order pushes for Medicare to use more medical telehealth services, which is care delivered by phone or digital means.... The order directs the government to work to allow private insurers who operate Medicare Advantage plans to use new plan pricing methods, such as allowing beneficiaries to share in the savings when they choose lower-cost health services."

Benefits in General

[Guidance Overview]

Don't Overlook Employee Benefit Plans When Considering Effect of the Final Overtime Rule

"Employee benefit plans with criteria for eligibility, contribution, etc. based on the classification of salary/hourly or exempt/non-exempt may see participant shifts ... The effects of employees shifting from one plan to another effective January 1, 2020, could create issues with non-discrimination testing, top-heavy results, or a reduction in certain benefits going forward (which may require advance notice to the affected participants)."
Jackson Lewis P.C.

Editor's Pick Employee Benefits in the Supreme Court (PDF)

33 pages. "[I]n the Court's last 44 terms starting with the October 1975 term -- [ERISA] in the main took effect on January 1, 1975 -- the Court has issued merits opinions in: 126 argued cases and two unargued cases directly involving employee benefit arrangements including IRAs, and two additional argued cases substantially implicating these arrangements even though employee benefits were not directly involved on the facts, for an astonishing total of 130 decisions. As of this writing, the Court has three employee benefit cases scheduled for argument during its October 2019 term, although other interesting petitions for certiorari are pending."
Eversheds Sutherland

To Disclose or Not During ERISA Administrative Review

"A recent 4th Circuit decision reiterates the importance of aligning a plan fiduciary's administrative claim and appeal review process with the standards for a 'full and fair review' under [DOL] regulations, including disclosing all documents considered in the course of determining a claim (absent compelling reasons not to)." [Odle vs. UMWA 1974 Pension Plan, No. 18-1398 (4th Cir. Jun. 20, 2019)]
Seyfarth Shaw LLP

Selected Discussions
on the BenefitsLink Message Boards

Waiver Needed from Section 125 Plan Participants Who Don't Choose Certain Benefits?

We offer AFLAC as part of our benefit plan. The reps insist that all eligible employees must be seen and see all the products offered, sign an acknowledgement form or a waiver even if they don't want to make any changes or cancel coverage during open enrollment. True or false?
BenefitsLink Message Boards

Press Releases

Most Popular Items in the Previous Issue, 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 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.

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  |   Change Email Address  |   Privacy Policy