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Health & Welfare Plans Newsletter

September 24, 2021

5 New Job Opportunities


[Guidance Overview]

The Impact of the ACA Employer Shared Responsibility Rules and Wellness Program Limits on COVID-19 Premium Surcharges

"[A] surcharge that passes muster under the ACA wellness rules does not necessarily guarantee compliance with the ADA provisions governing voluntary wellness programs. But since the EEOC has yet to issue guidance addressing the matter ... employers are currently left to design their programs based on assumptions of what would be considered compliant."  MORE >>


[Guidance Overview]

Key Health Plan Transparency Requirements Delayed

"[T]he three agencies ... announced they will align the compliance deadlines to be effective for plan years beginning on or after January 1, 2023. The agencies further announced that they intend to propose a new rule that requires the comparison information to be available via website, paper, or via telephone, if requested."  MORE >>


[Guidance Overview]

San Francisco Health Care Contribution Increasing for 2022 and Remote Worker Guidance

"With more employees working from home due to the COVID-19 pandemic, covered employers should review their records to determine if the number of employees working in San Francisco has changed from prior years. This could happen because employees who worked in San Francisco are now working somewhere else or that employees who live, but did not work, in San Francisco are now working from home."  MORE >>

HUB International

Litigation Involving Section 1557 Nondiscrimination Rules Continues

"Lawsuits involving the [ACA] Section 1557 nondiscrimination requirements are making their way through the courts. Some allege violations of the statute, while others challenge the agencies' interpretation of the statutory requirements."  MORE >>

Thomson Reuters / EBIA

A Buffeted Employer Health Care System Continues to Hold Firm: What Could Change That?

"Since 2013, the percentage of employers with 1,000 or more employees offering health benefits to workers has been consistently near or above 99 percent.... In 2017, the overall percentage of private-sector employers offering health benefits increased for the first time in nearly a decade.... The percentage of workers eligible for health coverage through their job also continued its upward trend."  MORE >>

Employee Benefit Research Institute [EBRI]

Guilt by 'Association': Watch Out for Self-Funded MEWAs

"MEWAs are subject to a patchwork of state regulations that makes it difficult, if not impossible, for the MEWA to operate nationally.... In most cases, the promoters will not advertise their plan as a MEWA, but rather as a purchasing alliance ... A second (or sometimes third or fourth) look at these arrangements usually pays off."  MORE >>

HUB International


Healthcare Price Transparency Initiatives May Fall Flat Due to Systemic Factors

"The biggest impediments to establishing an efficient pricing system ... stem from expecting consumers to navigate such a complex industry and shop for healthcare with a transactional mindset ... [T]he biggest beneficiaries of improved transparency will be employers that can 'leverage the information to demand better deals from their insurers and third-party administrators.' "  MORE >>

Healthcare Financial Management Association [HFMA]; free registration required

Benefits in General

Courts Giving DOL More Time to Claim ERISA Violations

"[T]he Supreme Court recently ruled ... that the 'actual knowledge' condition is only met where there is actual knowledge.... Relying on that precedent, DOL recently persuaded a federal court that the filing of Form 5500 in October of 2013 did not provide DOL actual knowledge because the filing 'was only a disclosure that was not actually reviewed by anyone in the Government until December 2014.' " [Walsh v. Bowers, No. 18-0155 (D. Hawaii, Sep. 17, 2021)]  MORE >>

Groom Law Group

Employee Benefits Changes in Ways and Means Amendment for 2022 Budget Reconciliation (PDF)

"The tax portion of the bill would: [1] Restrict Roth conversions and rollovers of after-tax contributions for all taxpayers, [2] Introduce additional retirement plan restrictions for high-income taxpayers, [3] Create plan reporting obligations for high account balances, and [3] Accelerate unrelated changes in paid leave and executive compensation. The portion of the bill promoting alternative vehicles would [r]einstate and expand the bicycle commuter benefit that had been suspended in 2018."  MORE >>

Ivins, Phillips & Barker

Contributions to New HSAs Reduce 401(k) Contributions, But Only Marginally (PDF)

"The median reduction in 401(k) contributions the first year participants made HSA contributions was $34.... Contributions to 401(k) plans were unaffected among participants contributing $8,500 or less in Year 1.... Higher HSA contributions were associated with lower 401(k) contributions.... Contributions fell $315 among HSA participants contributing more than $4,350."  MORE >>

Employee Benefit Research Institute [EBRI]

Employee Benefits Jobs

View job as Retirement Plan Consultant
for The MandMarblestone Group, llc Retirement Plan Consultant

The MandMarblestone Group, llc

Remote / Philadelphia PA

View job as Retirement Plan Consultant
for The MandMarblestone Group, llc

View job as Conversions Specialist
for BlueStar Retirement Services, Inc. Conversions Specialist

BlueStar Retirement Services, Inc.


View job as Senior Plan Document & Compliance Specialist
for PCS Retirement, LLC Senior Plan Document & Compliance Specialist

PCS Retirement, LLC


View job as Plan Consultant
for Sentinel Benefits & Financial Group Plan Consultant

Sentinel Benefits & Financial Group

Remote / Wakefield MA

View job as Compliance & Non-Discrimination Testing (Client Retirement Plans Analyst Senior)
for FIS Compliance & Non-Discrimination Testing (Client Retirement Plans Analyst Senior)



Press Releases

JULY Introduces Launch401k PEP to Support Advisor Partners

July Business Services

IRI Names New Members to Board of Directors

Insured Retirement Institute [IRI]

Webcasts and Conferences
(Health & Welfare Plans)

The Benefits of a Group Captive

October 28, 2021 WEBCAST


Last Issue's Most Popular Items

MHPAEA Action Steps for Self-Insured Group Health Plan Sponsors

Verrill Dana LLP

Text of Draft IRS Instructions for 2021 Form 1095-A: Health Insurance Marketplace Statement (PDF)

Internal Revenue Service [IRS]

Promises, Promises: Statements in a PowerPoint About Lifetime Health Benefits May Bind Employer

Kantor & Kantor

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BenefitsLink Retirement Plans Newsletter, ISSN no. 1536-9587.

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