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Health & Welfare Plans Newsletter

February 8, 2023

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[Guidance Overview]

Important Reminders for 2022 ACA Reporting

"[1] Check the correct box in column (a) in part III of the Form 1094-C ... [2] Make sure the Forms 1095-C are accurate ... [3] State reporting requirement ... [4] Tips on how to handle IRS ACA penalty letters."  MORE >>


[Guidance Overview]

How Plan Sponsors Can Prepare for End of COVID Emergency Declarations

"[1] Review group health plan terms for COVID-19-related coverage, including testing, vaccines and treatment.... [2] Review benefit terms or offerings made under temporary COVID-19 relief laws and guidance.... [3] Review grandfathered health plans to determine whether to revoke (without losing grandfathered status) any benefits added during the PHE.... [4] Confirm the proper winding down of extended deadlines for claims and appeals, HIPAA special enrollment elections, and COBRA elections and payments with insurers and third-party administrators[.]"  MORE >>


[Guidance Overview]

Employers Prepare for Thawing ERISA Deadlines

"Although the end of the outbreak period will be the same for each participant and beneficiary, not every deadline will be ... [D]ue to the mass nature of the timeframe beginning dates (the end of the outbreak period), employers, their third-party administrators, COBRA administrators, and other service providers may end up dealing with several 'batched' requests from participants, especially for some of the shorter deadlines and more common requests such as HIPAA special enrollment applications and COBRA elections."  MORE >>

Ogletree Deakins

[Guidance Overview]

Public Health Emergency Ends May 11: What Telehealth Companies Need to Know

"While some telehealth waivers will survive the end of the [public health emergency (PHE)], not every pandemic-era policy will continue. Digital health companies relying on the PHE waivers should take steps now to bring operations into compliance with the post-PHE world before the PHE ends in May."  MORE >>

Foley & Lardner LLP

[Guidance Overview]

COVID-19 Emergency Periods Ending

"[A table] reflects the impact of the ending of the [public health emergency] on health plan coverage (note that for fully insured plans, changes may need to be postponed until the subsequent plan year depending upon state-level insurance requirements) ... [A second table] details the [national emergency-related] compliance requirements for plan sponsors and the effect of the termination of the Outbreak Period (following July 10, 2023):"  MORE >>

Burnham Benefits

[Guidance Overview]

Agencies Propose Expansion of Contraceptive Care Coverage

"[T]he proposal would create a mechanism, independent from the employer, group health plan, plan sponsor, institution of higher education, or issuer, through which individuals could obtain contraceptive services at no cost from a willing provider of contraceptive services when the employer does not elect the optional accommodation."  MORE >>

The Wagner Law Group

[Guidance Overview]

States, Cities Tackle COVID-19 Paid Leave (PDF)

72 pages, rev. Feb. 7, 2023. "This GRIST provides brief summaries of state and local COVID-19 paid leave requirements, as well as guidance addressing how existing paid leave benefits apply during the pandemic. While many COVID-19 leave mandates have expired, some remain in place."  MORE >>


[Guidance Overview]

New Illinois Leave Law: Paid Leave for Any Reason

"The law reaches most employers, but does exempt those subject to local leave ordinances.... The law covers most employees, although several exceptions apply.... The law has differing carryover and unused payment requirements.... The law has several notice, posting and recordkeeping requirements."  MORE >>


Texas District Court Once Again Vacates Departments' No Surprises Act Regs

"The latest ruling vacates certain provisions included in the Departments' final regulations issued under the [No Surprises Act (NSA)] in August 2022.... [H]ealth providers asserted that the regulations improperly limited arbitrators' discretion and improperly weighted the QPA (by making it the 'de facto benchmark' for OON reimbursement).... [T]he district court concluded that the final regulations' challenged provisions exceeded the Departments' authority and conflicted with the NSA." [Tex. Med. Ass'n v. HHS, No. 22-372 (E.D. Tex. Feb. 6, 2023)]  MORE >>

Thomson Reuters Practical Law

Federal Appeals Court Finds USERRA Requires Paid Military Leave

"The federal courts of appeals that have reviewed this issue have spoken unanimously in upholding USERRA protections. In issuing this opinion, the Ninth Circuit joins the Seventh and Third Circuits in ruling that employers who pay employees for some types of short-term leave must provide equal benefits to employees who take short-term leave for military service." [Clarkson v. Alaska Airlines, Inc., No. 21-35473 (9th Cir. Feb. 1, 2023)]  MORE >>


Employee Trends Driving the Growing Case for Voluntary Benefits

"[1] Employees want ways to mitigate ongoing financial volatility.... [2] The talent shortage will likely continue.... [3] Employees are prioritizing mental health -- and mental health benefits.... [4] Employers are looking for more cost-effective solutions.... [5] Personalization continues to reign."  MORE >>

VOYA Financial

Employee Benefits Jobs

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Remote / Atlanta GA

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Press Releases

Employee Fiduciary Hires Brian Furgala as Director of 401(k) Education

Employee Fiduciary, LLC

Webcasts and Conferences
(Health & Welfare Plans)

No Surprises Act Enforcement: How to Prepare for a DOL Audit

March 30, 2023 WEBINAR

PLI [Practising Law Institute]

Last Issue's Most Popular Items

COVID Health Emergencies Formally Ending in May: What Health Plan Sponsors Need to Know

Nixon Peabody LLP

Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2023 Extends Telehealth Waivers

K&L Gates

How the PEO and Staffing Worlds Can Use Employee Benefits Complexity to Enhance Their Value Proposition

Fisher Phillips

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

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