News & Analysis as of

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

The ERISA Litigation Newsletter - March 2016

Editor’s Overview - This month we review the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Montanile v. Board of Trustees of National Elevator Industries Health Benefit Plan where the Supreme Court considered the scope of...more

ACA Suit Challenging Reduction in Hours Allowed to Proceed

Many employers are still working to catch up to and understand the new requirements of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) – including the IRS, which has announced automatic extensions to certain reporting requirements for this...more

EEOC Loses Another Wellness Case, Part 2 – Beware the ACA Penalties

In my last blog post, I discussed a recent loss by the EEOC in its efforts to limit the ability of employers to require employees to complete health risk assessments (HRAs) or biometric screenings in order to enroll in the...more

EEOC Loses Another Wellness Case, Part 1

The EEOC has been bringing lawsuits against employers challenging wellness programs. A recent case involved a company that had previously provided a credit to employees enrolled in the health plan who participated in a health...more

DOL Issues Proposed Updates for Summaries of Benefits and Coverage

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has issued an updated template Summary of Benefits and Coverage (SBC), Glossary of Coverage and Medical Terms, and related materials. The revised materials remain in proposed form, but have...more

Employee Benefits Developments February 2016

IRS Issues Guidance Regarding Application of ACA Fee to Expatriate Health Plans. Section 9010 of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) imposes an annual fee on covered entities engaged in the business of providing health insurance...more

Limiting Employees’ Hours to Dodge the ACA’s Employer Mandate Could Violate ERISA

In a move that brings many employers’ fears closer to fruition, a federal district court recently ruled that an employee may proceed with a class action lawsuit alleging that her employer violated the Employee Retirement...more

Important Development in Dave & Buster’s Lawsuit Regarding Whether Cutting Employee Work Hours Violates ERISA

In a case of first impression that is being closely watched by plaintiffs’ attorneys and large employers alike, a federal judge recently ruled against a motion brought by Dave & Buster’s, the restaurant chain, to dismiss a...more

Issue 99: Transition Relief for Student Health Plans and Other ACA Issues Impacting Student Employees

This is the ninety-ninth issue in our health care reform series of alerts for employers on selected topics in health care reform. This series of Health Care Reform Management Alerts is designed to provide a more in-depth...more

ACA Reporting Deadlines Relaxed for 2016

Following complaints, concerns and continuing questions relating to the Affordable Care Act reporting requirements, the IRS has relaxed reporting deadlines for 2016 in the form of IRS Notice 2016-4. As you may be aware,...more

The Health and Welfare “Wrap” Document: What It Is and Why You Want One

When it comes to telling their employees about certain benefits, many employers have for decades (since 1974 to be exact) flouted a particular provision of the law with impunity. The law to which we refer is the Employee...more

IRS Issues New Guidance on ACA and Other Health Plan-Related Legal Requirements

In Notice 2015-87 the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued guidance on various health plan-related topics, including: (1) treatment of employer-provided opt-out payments for purposes of affordability under the Affordable...more

Employment Lawyers Quiz a Benefits Lawyer

One of our New Year’s resolutions here at the Navigator is to get better at understanding employee benefits issues. We run across them all the time, as do HR professionals and in-house counsel. We know we don’t have the...more

President Obama Approves the Consolidated Appropriations Act with Key Employee Benefits Provisions

The Consolidated Appropriations Act to fund the government through 2016 was passed and enacted on December 18. The law contains a number of benefits-related provisions, including a two-year delay of the 40-percent excise tax...more

Solicitors Argue to U.S. Supreme Court That Vermont Health Care Reporting Law Is Not Preempted By ERISA

The Supreme Court will soon consider whether, as applied to self-insured health benefit plans or their third-party administrators, ERISA preempts a Vermont law requiring health care payers to report claims and other data to a...more

Employee Benefits Developments - December 2015

ALERT: IRS Extends ACA Reporting Deadlines. With only a few days remaining in 2015, the IRS provided some welcome relief for employers subject to certain Affordable Care Act reporting requirements. Under IRS Notice 2016-4,...more

Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation Advisory: Staying on the Compliance Track: The 2015 Health Benefits Year in Review

In a year-end flurry of activity, Congress adopted major tax and spending legislation, which was signed into law on Friday, December 18 by President Obama. The legislation, called the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2016...more

Implementation of ACA’s Controversial “Cadillac Tax” Delayed Until 2020

Among the many requirements imposed by the Affordable Care Act, none are more controversial than the excise tax to be imposed on expensive health plans. This provision of the law, commonly known as the “Cadillac Tax,” would...more

Employee Benefits Developments - November 2015

PACE Act Changes the Definition of ‘Small Group’ for Market Reform Purposes. On October 7, 2015, President Obama signed into law the Protecting Affordable Coverage for Employees Act (PACE Act). The PACE Act changed the...more

No Surprises in the Final Rules Issued Under ACA

Final rules have been issued regarding grandfathered plans, pre-existing conditions, rescissions, dollar limits, claims and appeals procedures, and patient protections. These rules, effective on the first day of the plan year...more

Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015 Includes Pension and ACA Provisions

On November 2nd, the President signed legislation that will raise the debt ceiling through March 2017. The legislation includes important provisions relating to pension funding, PBGC premiums, and the Affordable Care...more

Budget Legislation Repeals Affordable Care Act’s Automatic Enrollment Requirement for Large Employers

The Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015, Pub. L. No. 114-74, which was signed by President Obama on November 2, 2015, included a little-publicized provision that repealed the Affordable Care Act’s automatic enrollment requirement. ...more

Employee Benefits Provisions of the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015

The Bipartisan Budget Act includes the following important employee-benefit related provisions: - It repeals the automatic enrollment mandate of the Affordable Care Act. Under the ACA, employers with more than 200...more

Gaming the System? ERISA Interference Lawsuit Targets ACA-Driven Reduction of Hours Strategy

In a case believed to be the first of its kind, a recent class action claim has accused an employer of reducing hours of employees to avoid having to provide health coverage as required under the Patient Protection and...more

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