Health Tax

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Employee Benefits Developments - September 2014

CASES - Post-Retirement Medical Benefits Under Siege. A recent spike in retiree benefit litigation is evidence of a growing interest among employers in strategies designed to contain, reduce, and eliminate the current...more

Circuit Courts Provide Preview of Coming ACA Confrontations

The next Supreme Court battle over the Affordable Care Act is likely brewing in the circuit courts. On July 22, 2014, in Halbig v. Burwell, a divided D.C. Circuit held that the ACA does not allow the federal government to...more

The Hidden Tax Expenditures

In my last post, I wrote about the largest State tax expenditures identified by the Department of Revenue in a report issued in December 2011 and how those expenditures fared under tax reform efforts in 2013 and 2014. Those...more

IRS Expands Permissible Mid-Year Cafeteria Plan Elections

On September 18, 2014, the IRS issued Notice 2014-55, which expands permissible mid-year election changes under “cafeteria plans” to address two specific situations that have arisen in connection with the implementation of...more

Legal Alert: Final Rules on Compensation Deduction Limit for Health Insurers

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and the Department of Treasury (Treasury) have issued final regulations under section 162(m)(6) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended (Code), which limit the deduction certain...more

Legal Alert: New PPACA-related “Family Status” Changes for Cafeteria Plans

The Internal Revenue Service has issued Notice 2014-55 to permit new health plan elections in two situations where they were not previously allowed. ...more

HEALTH CARE REFORM: Time to get serious about the Affordable Care Act’s employer reporting requirements

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) has consumed us for the last four and a half years. As employers, we have spent so much time trying to figure out what the ACA requires, trying to hit the government’s moving regulatory targets,...more

IRS Finalizes and Clarifies ObamaCare Reporting Rules

The Internal Revenue Service has released a lengthy set of questions and answers regarding the reporting requirements under the Affordable Care Act (“ACA”) for “applicable large employers” under section 6056 of the Internal...more

The Affordable Care Act — How Did Two Courts Make Opposite Decisions on Tax Subsidies

How did two courts reach opposite decisions about tax subsidies for people who buy insurance through the federal exchanges created by the Affordable Care Act (ACA)? In Halbig v. Burwell, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the...more

IRS Issues Draft Instructions For Health Coverage Reporting

The IRS has issued draft instructions for the forms employers will use to report health coverage information required by the Affordable Care Act. The draft instructions should not be relied on, but they are indicative of the...more

When Did You Last Amend Your Section 125 Cafeteria or Flexible Benefit Plan? Now May Be A Good Time to Dust It Off and Update It

Section 125 Plans, which are commonly referred to as either cafeteria plans or flexible benefit plans, are much loved, and needed, if you want to allow employees to pay health insurance and other premiums on a pre-tax basis....more

Lame Duck Preview

With the November elections looming, the House and Senate completed their work last week before departing Washington to campaign, leaving any remaining legislative work for the post-election lame duck session. The brief work...more

The Affordable Care Act—Countdown to Compliance for Employers, Week 14: IRS Notice 2014-55 Gets the Employer Shared Responsibility...

The Treasury Department and the IRS had a busy week issuing no less than five Affordable Care Act guidance items, consisting of...more

IRS to Amend Cafeteria Plan Regulations to Facilitate Enrollment in Marketplace Coverage

On Thursday, September 18, 2014, the Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) released Notice 2014-55, which expands the cafeteria plan “change in status” rules to allow plans to offer employees an option to revoke their elections...more

From Second and State: Legislative Preview — September 2014

The legislature returns to Harrisburg next week for three of the remaining nine days of the 2013-2014 legislative session. While it is still unclear as of Friday what bills will see floor action, these three session days are...more

Five ACA Issues That Employers Should Be Following

Employers have about three months to finalize their employer mandate compliance plans under the Affordable Care Act (“ACA”). While most employers are in the final stages of planning, this month’s Take 5 will address five ACA...more

What Employer Shared Responsibility Does Not Say

So much energy has been spent on what the final regulations on the employer shared responsibility tax and the related final reporting regulations (the “ESRR”), that some of the most significant considerations have been missed...more

U.S. Supreme Court Update - September 2014

The Supreme Court is set to hear three state tax cases during its 2014-2015 term. The three cases, Alabama Department of Revenue v. CSX Transportation, Inc.; Comptroller of the Treasury of Maryland v. Wynne; and Direct...more

Health Care Reform Implementation Update September 2014

Congress is back in session, and work on a Continuing Resolution is underway. The Affordable Care Act (ACA) is back center stage with House Republicans attaching a medical device tax repeal provision to a jobs package set for...more

Fall Legislative Session Preview

With fall in the air, the General Assembly returns to Harrisburg on Monday, September 15 after a two-month summer break. There are only 11 session days scheduled for the remainder of the session, and with November’s election...more

Employer Shared Responsibility Payments and Reporting Requirements Under the Affordable Care Act: Code Sections 6055 and 6056

Employer Shared Responsibility Penalties - There are two types of employer shared responsibility payments, also known as pay or play penalties, under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The first penalty under Internal...more

Fatal Blow to Healthcare Reform? Courts split on federal tax credit

On July 22, 2014, two federal courts came down on opposite sides of an issue that may have far-reaching consequences about the future of the Patient Protection and Affordance Care Act ("PPACA"). At stake is whether the PPACA...more

Circuit Courts’ Split over Major ACA Issue Will Impact Employers

Two U.S. Courts of Appeals recently issued conflicting rulings on a major provision of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), and the U.S. Supreme Court is being asked to weigh in. The concern is over the Internal Revenue Service’s...more

U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit to Rehear ACA Subsidy Challenge

On September 4, 2014, the D.C. Circuit vacated a panel decision in Halbig v. Burwell (Civ. No. 14-5018) striking down the federal government’s provision of premium subsidies to individuals purchasing coverage through the...more

Hospital's Lab Testing for Non-Patients Held to be Related Activity

On July 11, 2014, the IRS released a Technical Advice Memorandum ("TAM") finding that a tax-exempt hospital's income from the performance of laboratory services for non-patients was not subject to the unrelated business...more

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