logo logo

Trusted Since 1995

Health & Welfare Plans Newsletter

December 1, 2023

2 New Job Opportunities 2 New Job Opportunities


[Official Guidance]

Text of Draft IRS Publication 503: Child and Dependent Care Expenses, for Use in Preparing 2023 Returns (PDF)

21 pages; Nov. 30, 2023. "What's New: The temporary special rules for dependent care flexible spending arrangements (FSAs) have expired."  MORE >>

Internal Revenue Service [IRS]

[Guidance Overview]

Agency FAQs Part 63 Address Surprise Billing IDR Batching Issues; Highlight Updated CLAS Guidance (PDF)

"Two FAQs address IDR batching, while a third addresses the [ACA] requirement to provide certain notices in a culturally and linguistically appropriate manner."  MORE >>

Thomson Reuters / EBIA

Tenth Circuit Defines Elements of MHPAEA Claim

"[To] state a claim under MHPAEA, [the court said] a plaintiff must: [1] Plausibly allege that the relevant group health plan is subject to MHPAEA. [2] Identify a specific treatment limitation applied to MH/SUD benefits covered by the plan. [3] Identify M/S benefits covered by the plan that are analogous to the MH/SUD care for which the plaintiff seeks benefits. [4] Plausibly allege a disparity between the treatment limitation on the MH/SUD benefits as compared to those placed upon the analogous M/S benefits." [E.W. v. Health Net Life Ins. Co., No. 21-04110 (Nov. 21, 2023)]  MORE >>

Miller & Chevalier

Employers Grapple with Reining in Costs for GLP-1s

"Employers ... see ultra-pricey drugs as key factors pushing up costs overall.... [F]ewer than half of large employers (42% of those with 500 or more employees) currently cover GLP-1 medications for treatment of obesity, although another 19% say they are considering it.... Employers and health plans also are looking at putting systems in place, such as prior authorization, that can better manage the cost around these drugs."  MORE >>


The Changing Nature of Primary Care Visits (PDF)

"Among users of primary care, 95-97 percent utilized it in an office setting prior to 2020, but only 86 percent did so from 2020-2021 as employees began using telemedicine (7-8 percent) and urgent care clinics (3-4 percent) with greater frequency due to the COVID-19 pandemic.... There has been a consistent downward trend in the share of employees whose primary care office visits are at a general/family practice, falling from 42 percent in 2013 to 37 percent in 2021."  MORE >>

Employee Benefit Research Institute [EBRI]


ERIC Comment Letter to Oregon Employment Department on Proposed Regs for Paid Leave Oregon (PDF)

"Additional claims information should be disclosed to employers to facilitate supplementation of paid leave benefits ... Further guidance is needed on the definition of 'family member' for employee understanding and employer administration ... Job protection standards should not arbitrarily limit the equivalent positions available to employees returning from paid leave."  MORE >>

The ERISA Industry Committee [ERIC]

Employee Benefits Jobs

View job as Retirement Specialist for Alerus

Retirement Specialist


Arden Hills MN / Hopkins MN / Fargo ND / Grand Forks ND

View job as Retirement Specialist for Alerus

View job as Senior Pension Administrator for The Hilb Group

Senior Pension Administrator

The Hilb Group

Remote / Cranston RI

View job as Senior Pension Administrator for The Hilb Group

Selected New Discussions

Cafeteria Plan Nondiscrimination Testing for Varying Employer Contribution Levels

"Fully-Insured group with a section 125 plan. They have different employer contributions for Salary & Hourly employees in the same geographic location under the same EIN. The employer is Large Group so they have a 4 tiered composite rate structure and the contributions for the Salary & Hourly employees are:

  • Hourly - EE 75%, ES 75%. EC 75%, FAM 75%
  • Salary - EE 100%, ES 75%. EC 75%, FAM 75%

"The Hourly group doesn't have any HCPs and the Salary group has many HCPs so at first I thought this would be discriminatory since the contribution scheme favors the group with HCPs. My question is, Since the salary employees in the EE-Only tier are getting 100% of their benefits paid for would they be excluded as participants in the section 125 plan? If that group of EE-Only salaried employees is removed from testing then the remaining employees are all provided uniform employer contributions. Would this pass nondiscrimination testing?

"One concern I have is that a salary employee can be in the EE-Only Medical tier, but then have a Child they are covering on Dental in the EC tier and that pre-tax dental deduction would loop them back into the section 125 testing."

BenefitsLink Message Boards

Last Issue's Most Popular Items

IRS Releases 2024 Limits for Health and Welfare and Related Plans


HIPAA Privacy Rule Changes May Yet Be Finalized Before Year End

Verrill Dana LLP

DOL Issues Final Rule Updating Davis-Bacon Regs


Unsubscribe  |   Change Email Address

Search Past Issues   |   Privacy Policy

Submit an Article   |   Contact Us   |   Advertise Here

Copyright 2023, 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.

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

Links to web sites other than and are offered as a service to our readers. We are not involved in their production and are not responsible for their content.