Health Labor & Employment Insurance

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Check Your Neutral Policies: The EEOC Joins the ACLU’s Challenge to Dignity Health’s Exclusion of All Care Related to Sex...

The ACLU filed a complaint against Dignity Health, claiming that the total exclusion of care related to “sex transformation surgery” in Dignity’s employee health insurance plan is unlawful sex discrimination. Now the EEOC...more

What is Telemedicine? A Cool Benefit or a Hot Mess?

We’ve had numerous inquiries lately about telemedicine benefits. My clients most typically ask either “is this a group health plan?” or “is it just access to another provider?” Clearly, there is much confusion surrounding...more

Hospital and Fixed Indemnity Policies; Excepted Benefits; Supplemental Coverage under Recently Proposed Treasury Regulations; and...

We reported in a recent post on proposed regulations dealing with, among other things, the treatment of hospital indemnity or other fixed indemnity insurance products in the group market. This post takes a closer look at the...more

Michigan Health Insurance Claims Assessment Act is Not Preempted by ERISA

The Sixth Circuit, has decided, on remand from the Supreme Court, that the Michigan Health Insurance Claims Assessment Act (Act) is not preempted by ERISA. The Act imposes a 1 percent tax on all paid claims by insurers or...more

ERISA Preempts State Law Requiring Insurer “Prompt Payment”

Alaska’s prompt pay statute—which requires insurers to pay benefit claims within 30 days of submission—is preempted by federal laws governing employer-provided benefits and benefits for government workers, a federal judge...more

Health Plan Case Managers Entitled to Overtime Pay

Managed care companies help insurers and government programs coordinate healthcare plans by making coverage determinations for participants. In many situations, case managers conduct utilization reviews to determine the...more

Proposed Changes to Form 5500 Would Significantly Increase Reporting Obligations for Health and Welfare Plan Sponsors

Summary - On July 11, 2016, the Department of Labor (DOL) and Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced a proposal to implement significant changes to the forms and regulations that govern annual employee benefit plan...more

ERISA: 2nd Circuit — Mental Health Provider Lacks Standing to Challenge ERISA Benefit Denial

Who can challenge an ERISA benefit denial? Does a physician have standing to challenge the denial of a patient’s coverage? It depends....more

Paying Employees to Opt Out of Insurance? BEWARE

Seyfarth Synopsis: That “win-win” in contract negotiation wherein employees are paid to opt out of employer insurance has become much more complicated thanks to the IRS. Basically, if bargaining parties do not follow new IRS...more

Transitioning to Coverage: Three Things to Know About the New Transgender Healthcare Regulations

On May 18, 2016, the Department of Health and Human Services (“HHS”) issued final regulations implementing the nondiscrimination provisions of the Affordable Care Act. As we discussed in our March 30, 2016 blog, the rule...more

Data Security Safeguards Can Help Healthcare Employers Withstand Cyberattacks—and Government Audits

The last couple of years have brought a steady rain of bad news for the healthcare industry when it comes to data security: Insurers faced with massive data breaches affecting thousands of health plans and millions of...more

Hospital and Fixed Indemnity and Disease-Specific Policies in the Cross Hairs: Tri-Agency Proposed Rule Portends Some Disruption

On June 10, the Departments of Treasury, Labor, and Health and Human Services (The “Departments”) issued a set of proposed regulations dealing with expatriate health plans, excepted benefits, lifetime and annual limits, and...more

Health Law Insights Newsletter - Issue 10 - June 2016

McCarter & English, LLP’s Health Care Group presents Issue 10 of the Health Law Insights, which discusses the latest legal issues in the health care industry. NATIONAL - Drug Diversion Case Raises Red Flags for...more

New IRS Enforcement Interpretation Takes Aim At Tax Status Of Certain Wellness Program Payments

Employers have plenty on their plates to think about on the subject of wellness plans these days. New EEOC regulations and new court decisions will keep employers on their toes in evaluating their current wellness plan...more

HHS Releases HIPAA Privacy and Security Audit Guidelines as it Starts its Second Round of Audits and Continues Enforcement Efforts

During April 2016 the Department of Health and Human Services (“HHS”) posted lengthy audit guidelines for HIPAA Privacy and Security on its website (over 400 pages). As HHS starts its audits of health care providers, health...more

HHS Issues Final ACA Nondiscrimination in Health Programs and Activities Regulation

In Depth - On Friday, May 13, 2016, the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office for Civil Rights (OCR) finalized regulations that provide explicit protections from discrimination on the basis of gender...more

New ADA and GINA Wellness Regulation Changes Complicate Wellness Program Compliance Analysis and Risks

Wellness programs should all be reviewed considering the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) and the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (“GINA”) regulatory changes because noncompliance with the new requirements do...more

Health Update - May 2016

Actions to Advance Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health - Editor's Note: Children's earliest experiences—both positive and negative—impact their brain formation and in turn their social and emotional, physical,...more

Refresher Course on Affordable Care Act Individual and Employer Penalties For Not Having Health Insurance

Even though penalties for failure to comply with Affordable Care Act (ACA) coverage requirements have been in force since January 1, 2014 for employers with 100 or more full-time equivalent employees and January 1, 2015 for...more

Cadillac Tax: A Levy in Limbo

The future of the Cadillac tax, a key cost-control mechanism and federal revenue source enacted as part of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), is unclear. Though initially set to take effect in 2018,...more

New ACA, et. al. FAQs Cover Items From “Top” to “Bottom”

On April 20, the “Big Three” agencies (DOL, Treasury/IRS, and HHS) released another set of FAQs (the 31st, for those of you counting at home). Consistent with earlier FAQs, the new FAQs cover a broad range of items under the...more

New Affordable Care Act FAQs Released on Rescissions of Coverage, Preventive Care Mandate, Out-of-Network Emergency Service...

The U.S. Department of Labor, the Department of Health and Human Services, and the Department of the Treasury (collectively, the “Departments”) have jointly issued a new set of answers to frequently asked questions about the...more

No Surprises in Recent Vested Rights Decision: Fry v. City of Los Angeles

The recent decision in Fry v. City of Los Angeles (California Second District Court of Appeal Case No. B259791, March 7, 2016) held, after careful parsing of the language in the City Charter and the applicable City...more

Supreme Court Exempts ERISA Plans from a State Reporting Law

In Gobeille, Chair of the Vermont Green Mountain Care Board v. Liberty Mutual Insurance Co., decided on March 1, 2016, the Supreme Court held that the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (“ERISA”) preempts...more

Tired of the Health Care Hullabaloo?

Hullabaloo: noun: a commotion, a fuss. In recent years, almost every change to health care has caused a hullabaloo. Today, we thought you might enjoy reading about a few recent and proposed changes that, although...more

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