Health Insurance Employee Benefits

News & Analysis as of

Employee Benefits Developments - May 2016

Agencies Issue New FAQs on the Affordable Care Act.The Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and the Treasury (the agencies) issued another set of frequently asked questions (FAQs) regarding the implementation of...more

ACA Nondiscrimination Regulations Finalized

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has issued final regulations under Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) which prohibit discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, or...more

The Legalization of Medicinal Marijuana in PA – What Does it Mean for Employer Provided Insurance Coverage?

Pennsylvania’s Medical Marijuana Act (MMA) was signed into law on April 17, 2016 and officially took effect last week. One of the questions we’ve been asked since the passage of the Act is: how will employer provided...more

ERISA Preemption: Don't Tread on my Uniform System of Plan Administration

On March 1 the U.S. Supreme Court again reinforced the broad preemptive scope of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, 29 U.S.C.A. §1001. In Gobeille v. Liberty Mutual Insurance Co., 136 S. Ct. 936, the court...more

Illinois Supreme Court Issue Long-Awaited Decision on Vesting of Retiree Health Care Benefits in Matthews v. Chicago Transit...

On May 5th, nearly a full year after it heard oral arguments in the case, the Illinois Supreme Court issued its decision in Matthews v. Chicago Transit Authority, et al., addressing the interplay between a public sector...more

Employee Assistance Programs and State Insurance Regulation Structuring EAPs to Ensure Compliance

Employee Assistance Programs (or EAPs) have served employers and their employees for decades, providing a variety of benefits to address issues that might otherwise adversely affect the overall health and work of employees. A...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

Bad COBRA Notices Can Cost You

Sun Trust Bank was sued in a class action challenging its COBRA notice. The plaintiffs who brought the lawsuit claimed that the COBRA notice was materially deficient in that it failed to provide the name and address of the...more

SCOTUS ERISA Cases, Part Two: Preemption of State Healthcare Claims Database

This is the second article of a three part series summarizing employee benefit issues that are being argued in front of the U.S. Supreme Court during the current October 2015 term. Part One provided an outline of Montanile v....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

Supreme Court: ERISA Pre-empts Law Requiring Reporting to State Healthcare Database

In Gobeille v. Liberty Mut. Ins. Co., the U.S. Supreme Court held that the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) pre-empts a Vermont law that requires healthcare providers, including health insurers and...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

U.S. Supreme Court Reaffirms ERISA’s Preemption Provisions as Applied to State Health Law Reporting Requirements

Recently, the U.S. Supreme Court, in Gobeille v. Liberty Mutual Insurance Co., 2016 U.S. LEXIS 1612, underscored the broad extent to which the preemption language of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974...more

Cybersecurity and Data Privacy: Big Win for Self-Insured ERISA Plans at Supreme Court (3/16)

On March 1, the Supreme Court issued a decision in Gobeille v. Liberty Mutual Insurance Company that delivered a big win for self-insured group health plans. The case involved a challenge to a Vermont law that required...more

Supreme Court Restricts State Medical Claims Data Reporting Law

ERISA does not allow a state to compel a self-insured group health plan to compile and report medical claims data for inclusion in a state-wide all-payer health care database, the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled in a landmark...more

U.S. Supreme Court Rules That ERISA Preempts State Health Claims Reporting Law

Yesterday, in Gobeille v. Liberty Mutual Insurance Company, the United States Supreme Court held that the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (“ERISA”) preempts a Vermont state law that requires certain entities...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

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

IRS Reduces Voluntary Compliance Program Filing Fees for Most Plans

The IRS recently published its annual update on user fees, Revenue Procedure 2016-8, which now includes fees for Voluntary Compliance Program (“VCP”) applications filed with the IRS pursuant to the Employee Plans Compliance...more

State of the Union 2016 – What Will the President Focus on in his Final Year in Office?

While much of last night's State of the Union Address focused on big-picture issues, President Obama did make some specific employment-related comments during the annual speech to the country. One underlying purpose of this...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

Another Post-Tackett Ruling Denying Retiree Health Benefits

A district court in West Virginia recently held that retirees were not entitled to lifetime health benefits under the clear and unambiguous language of the relevant collective bargaining agreements. Shortly after Constellium...more

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