Health Insurance Employee Benefits

News & Analysis as of

IRS Issues New Forms for ACA Reporting; Congress Increases Penalties for Failure to Meet Requirements

The IRS has completed drafts of the 2015 forms and instructions for employers, insurers, and other health plan sponsors to use to meet their reporting obligations for the employer and individual mandates under the Affordable...more

Second Circuit holds that the Affordable Care Act does not violate the Religious Freedom Restoration Act

On August 7, 2015, in Catholic Health Care System v. Burwell, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals held that the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (“RFRA”) is not violated by certain regulations promulgated under the...more

Limiting an Employee’s Hours to Avoid Offering Group Health Plan Coverage Under the Affordable Care Act: Evaluating the Risks...

Business leaders and human resources and employee benefits professionals are well aware of potential minefields for employer group health plan sponsors under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Large employer plan sponsors are...more

Be Alert Middle East: New Dubai and Qatar Health Insurance Laws

Qatar, and most recently Dubai, have introduced a compulsory health insurance scheme. The scheme, which applies to all residents and visitors, stipulates that it is mandatory for employers to provide employees with health...more

Employee Benefits Alert - July 2015

Major Revisions to Qualified Plan Determination Letter Process Announced - Effective January 1, 2017, the staggered five-year determination letter remedial amendment cycles for individually designed plans will be...more

Wal-Mart Accused of Gender-Discrimination Because of Anti-Gay Insurance Policies

In Cote v. Wal-Mart Stores, Wal-Mart is facing the possibility of a class action suit from a former employee who claims that the company’s denial of healthcare benefits to her same-sex spouse amounts to sex discrimination....more

Governor Rauner and AFSCME Extend Master Agreement, But Only Through September

Earlier this week, Governor Rauner and AFSCME Council 31, the union representing almost 40,000 state workers, agreed to temporarily extend the terms of the 2012-2015 collective bargaining agreement (CBA) and prohibit a strike...more

Employee Benefits After Obergefell

In a historic decision, the United States Supreme Court in Obergefell v. Hodges recently held that the Fourteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution requires all jurisdictions in all fifty states to: (1) license a...more

Benefits Litigation Update – July 2015

Welcome to the new, rejuvenated version of the Benefits Litigation Update, which we bring you jointly with the law firm of Epstein Becker Green. Our goal is to provide a concise and, we hope, insightful glimpse into recent...more

GASB Changes Governmental Entity Accounting Disclosure Rules for Retiree Health Benefits

The General Accountability Standards Board (GASB) recently issued new standards that govern the disclosure of post-employment benefits in financial statements. Specifically, new GASB standards require state and municipal...more

Health and Welfare Benefits for Same-Sex Spouses after Obergefell: A New Mandate for Employers?

After last month’s decision by the U.S. Supreme Court in Obergefell v. Hodges, employee benefit plan sponsors may wonder whether Obergefell affirmatively imposes an obligation for employers to provide health, life,...more

The Supreme Court Addresses Federal Health Care Subsidies and Same-Sex Marriage

Two recent Supreme Court decisions have implications for employee benefit plan sponsors: King v. Burwell, decided June 25, 2015, and Obergefell v. Hodges, decided June 26, 2015....more

July and August 2015 Filing and Notice Deadlines for Qualified Retirement and Health and Welfare Plans

Employers and plan sponsors must comply with numerous filing and notice deadlines for their retirement and health and welfare plans. Failure to comply with these deadlines can result in costly penalties. To avoid such...more

So Same-Sex Marriage Is Legal … Now What? Important Decisions Employers Face Now

In Obergefell v. Hodges, the U.S. Supreme Court held that the 14th Amendment to the Constitution requires all 50 states to license marriages between same-sex couples and to recognize same-sex marriages performed out-of-state....more

Appellate Court Notes

- Supreme Court Advance Release Opinions: - SC19422 - Awdziewicz v. Meriden Certain police officers retired, entitling them to pension benefits under the City Charter as previously modified in a separate lawsuit...more

Monthly Benefits Alert - June 2015

Supreme Court - As explained in more detail in separate alerts we issued over the past several days, the Supreme Court decided two major cases involving the Affordable Care Act and same-sex marriage. First, as described...more

Employee Benefits Implications of Supreme Court Decision on Same-Sex Marriage

On June 26, 2015, in Obergefell v. Hodges, the Supreme Court of the United States determined that it is unconstitutional for a state to ban same-sex couples from exercising the fundamental right to marry. As a result of this...more

What the Supreme Court’s Same-Sex Marriage Ruling Means for Employers

On Friday, the Supreme Court of the United States issued its long-awaited opinion in the Obergefell case, striking down bans on same-sex marriage as unconstitutional and legalizing same-sex marriage in every state. We posted...more

SCOTUS Alert: Same-Sex Marriage is a Go, and ACA Stays Alive

Two big decisions in two days from the Supreme Court. Read on for details. Same-Sex Marriage is a Go! Today, the United States Supreme Court issued a monumental decision in Obergefell, et al. v. Hodges, et al.; Case No....more

What does "will be insured" actually mean?

Balancing obligations to provide health and life insurance benefits to retirees with other legitimate business needs can be tricky. Although retirees depend on the benefits, employers may need to modify benefit plans for...more

Internet Posting of SPD is Insufficient

Employers know that they must prepare and distribute a summary plan description (SPD) for their ERISA benefit plans, including retirement benefits, health insurance, life insurance and disability insurance. Because of the...more

Employee Benefits Developments - April 2015

Health Insurance Company’s HIPAA Breach Affects Millions. At the end of January, a national BlueCross BlueShield affiliate, Anthem, Inc., discovered that its information technology systems were hacked. The information...more

Employee Benefits Developments - March 2015

The Internal Revenue Service recently issued Notice 2015-16, intending to initiate and inform the process of developing regulatory guidance regarding the excise tax on high-cost employer-sponsored health coverage. The...more

Medical Insurance Premium Reimbursement — A Brief Reprieve for Small Employers

Some employers – particularly smaller ones – have assisted their employees to obtain health insurance by reimbursing them for the cost of insurance they purchase in the individual market. Does this practice satisfy the...more

Not All Health Savings Plans Are Created Equal

Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) have gained in popularity since the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, but many employers are unclear about how they differ from more traditional Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs). An...more

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