Health & Welfare Plans Newsletter

May 21, 2020

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Employee Benefit Plans - 2020 Plan Sponsor Update
May 27, 2020 WEBCAST
PwC

Ethical Considerations for Employee Benefit Plan Lawyers
June 4, 2020 WEBCAST
American Bar Association Joint Committee on Employee Benefits [JCEB]

ERISA Litigation Update
June 4, 2020 WEBCAST
American Bar Association Joint Committee on Employee Benefits [JCEB]

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View Coronavirus (COVID-19) News and Resources

[Official Guidance]

Text of IRS Rev. Proc. 2020-32: 2021 Inflation-Adjusted Amounts for Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) (PDF)

"For calendar year 2021, the annual limitation on deductions under Section 223(b)(2)(A) for an individual with self-only coverage under a high deductible health plan is $3,600. For calendar year 2021, the annual limitation on deductions under Section 223(b)(2)(B) for an individual with family coverage under a high deductible health plan is $7,200.... For calendar year 2021, a 'high deductible health plan' is defined under Section 223(c)(2)(A) as a health plan with an annual deductible that is not less than $1,400 for self-only coverage or $2,800 for family coverage, and the annual out-of-pocket expenses ... do not exceed $7,000 for self-only coverage or $14,000 for family coverage."

Internal Revenue Service [IRS]

[Guidance Overview]

IRS Announces 2021 Limits for Health Savings Accounts and High-Deductible Health Plans

"Many of the dollar limits currently in effect for 2020 will change for 2021. The HSA catch-up contribution for individuals age 55 or older will not change as it is not subject to cost-of-living adjustments. [A table] compares the applicable dollar limits for HSAs and HDHPs for 2020 and 2021."

McDermott Will & Emery

[Guidance Overview]

IRS Guidance Allows Employers to Offer Second Open Enrollment Period for the 2020 Plan Year and Provides Greater Flexibility for Making Mid-Year Cafeteria Plan Elections

"Two practical items to note with respect to these relief measures.... [1] Employers may adopt one or all of the election changes.... [2] [T]he ability for an employee to change FSA and DCAP elections was never available under current law. As such, [this option] may provide a tremendous amount of assistance to employees during 2020."

Squire Patton Boggs

[Guidance Overview]

COBRA in the Time of COVID-19

"Employers will have to consider how to address the potential lag in premium payments. For fully-insured health plans, the insurance carrier might require full payment of the COBRA premium by the employer so that coverage does not lapse altogether ... For self-funded health plans, employers might continue to pay claims and seek recoupment from the COBRA participant if coverage is retroactively terminated, or they might consider pending claims until the premiums are received. Pending claims might become challenging if the Outbreak Period lasts for several months."

Foley & Lardner LLP

[Guidance Overview]

School's Out: The Use of Paid Leave for Summer Child Care

"[E]ligible employees of qualifying employers who are tasked with returning to work or teleworking but cannot send their children to their summer 'place of care' are eligible for expanded family leave. However, an employee generally will not be eligible for leave if another parent, guardian, or usual child care arrangement is available to provide the necessary care."

Fox Rothschild LLP

[Guidance Overview]

COVID-19 Supplemental Paid Sick Leave Docks in Long Beach, California

"On May 19, 2020, Long Beach, California enacted a law requiring supplemental paid sick leave for COVID-19 purposes. Like San Jose, Long Beach enacted an urgency ordinance that takes effect immediately, plus an identical 'regular' ordinance that will come back to the city council for a second, final reading at a future council meeting.... The Long Beach ordinance has no current 'end' date; rather, the city manager must report to the city council and mayor every 90 days, and the city council will determine whether and when the law will sail away and no longer apply."

Littler

Trends in Parental and Family Leave Benefits

"[E]mployers are taking a closer look at their total benefits packages to understand what is driving prospective employees' wants and needs, particularly relating to parental leave. State and local laws are also changing quickly, creating a regulatory maze that can be difficult to navigate.... [Results of a] survey specific to parental leave benefits [provide] a sense of what employers are currently doing and considering in this space."

Milliman's Healthcare Town Hall

Qualified Medical Child Support Orders: Compliance Issues for Group Health Plans (PDF)

"When a plan receives a QMCSO, it is obligated to review the terms of the order and respond in accordance with the guidelines issued by the [DOL] ... What is a QMCSO? ... What are the plan sponsor's obligations? ... How do other laws interact with QMCSOs?"

Cowden Associates, Inc.

Subscription Models for Prescription Drugs: The Motivation, Potential, and Limitations of a New Payment Model

"[T]he authors argue that, conceptually, the main advantage of subscription models over traditional prescription drug payment arrangements is that they could reduce some sources of uncertainty in spending for payers and in revenue for manufacturers. But compared with traditional prescription drug payment arrangements, the ability of subscription models to lower prescription drug spending is limited."

RAND Corporation

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BenefitsLink Health & Welfare Plans Newsletter, ISSN no. 1536-9595. Copyright 2020 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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