News & Analysis as of

Legal Alert: IRS Offers Rules of the Road for Cadillac Plan Tax

On February 23, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued Notice 2015-16 (Notice), which describes several possible approaches for implementing the excise tax on high-cost employer-sponsored health care plans (also known as...more

Permissible Discrimination in Health Benefits

The intense regulation of health care benefits, especially with respect to the Affordable Care Act, has created much confusion among employers. As a result, many employers do not understand that they may offer different...more

Five Health Care Developments Important to Employers

Perhaps never before have employers faced so many challenges when it comes to health care issues affecting their workforce. Congress may try to amend the Affordable Care Act (“ACA”). The Supreme Court of the United States is...more

Premium Reimbursement Arrangements Get Relief - More ACA Transition Relief—This Time for Small Employers and S-Corps

The IRS issued guidance on Feb. 18, 2015, providing temporary relief until June 30, 2015, from steep penalties for small employers and S-corps that have continued to use premium reimbursement arrangements to provide health...more

Partial Relief for Employer Payment of Individual Insurance Premiums

In a recent notice, the Internal Revenue Service has tempered prior guidance that closed the door on employer arrangements for paying the cost of individual health insurance for employees. The IRS still views these premium...more

ACA Countdown to Compliance - 52 Week Series For Employers

In this volume, we have collected the 52 weekly blog posts that comprise the series entitled, The Affordable Care Act—Countdown to Compliance for Employers. The series appeared in the Mintz Levin Employment Matters Blog...more

Beware of Stop-Loss Coverage Gaps When Choosing a Self-Funded Major Medical Plan

The Affordable Care Act requires applicable large employers to make broad-based offers of group health insurance coverage to substantially all their full-time employees or face potential tax penalties. (The term “applicable...more

IRS Clarifies Prior Guidance on Premium Reimbursement Arrangements; Provides Limited Relief

Continuing its focus on so-called “premium reimbursement” or “employer payment plans”, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) released IRS Notice 2015-17 on February 18, 2015. In this Notice, which was previewed and approved by...more

U.S. Supreme Court Describes “Ordinary Principles of Contract Law”

In a contract governed by federal law, does “The End” really mean “The End”? Some federal courts have said “no,” but the U.S. Supreme Court has just said “yes.” Most contract cases in federal court involve the...more

U.S. Supreme Court Describes “Ordinary Principles of Contract Law”

In a contract governed by federal law, does “The End” really mean “The End”? Some federal courts have said “no,” but the U.S. Supreme Court has just said “yes.” ...more

Supreme Court Rejects Sixth Circuit’s Yard-Man Inferences in M&G Polymers USA, LLC v. Tackett

In M&G Polymers USA, LLC v. Tackett, 135 S. Ct. 935 (2015), the Supreme Court of the United States addressed the interpretation of collective bargaining agreements (CBAs) that include post-retirement welfare benefits, such as...more

ACA Issues for Employers to Stay Aware of in 2015

With the Affordable Care Act's Employer Mandate (Pay-or-Play penalties) now officially in effect, employers with 50 or more full-time or full-time-equivalent employees should have already made all significant changes to their...more

The ERISA Litigation Newsletter - February 2015

The Supreme Court cast a ray of sunlight for employers by rejecting the use of a problematic inference in adjudicating claims for retiree benefits brought pursuant to collective bargaining agreements. For many years, the...more

Eligibility Rules Need To Be In Writing

Healthcare reform continues to roll on. 2014 saw the implementation of the health insurance exchanges, the Individual Mandate, and a host of new rules relating to employer-provided health coverage. 2015 marks the start of yet...more

Locke Lord QuickStudy: Attention, Health Insurers: Unique Encryption Requirements in NJ

Setting a new standard for encryption, New Jersey has enacted a new law (P.L. 2014, c. 88, codified at N.J. Stat. Ann. §§ 56:8-196 - 56:8-198) effective August 1, 2015, requiring health insurance carriers authorized to issue...more

IRS Publishes Final Forms and Instructions on Information Reporting Under the Affordable Care Act

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) published final forms and instructions addressing information reporting requirements applicable to employers and insurers under Internal Revenue Code Sections 6055 and 6056. The reporting...more

IRS Finalizes Forms and Instructions for ACA Information-Reporting Requirements

For the 2015 calendar year, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 (“ACA”) imposes information-reporting requirements on health insurance issuers and employers. Insurers and employers are required to report to...more

Manatt on Health Reform: Weekly Highlights - February 2015 #2

HHS ramps up for the final week of open enrollment. Families buying into CHIP in Pennsylvania are granted tax relief, and though Medicaid expansion efforts seem to have hit a wall in Tennessee and Wyoming, Arkansas assures...more

Unanimous Supreme Court Decision Eliminates Presumption That Union Retiree Health Benefits Are Vested For Life

In M&G Polymers USA, LLC v. Tackett, the United States Supreme Court invalidated a judicial presumption - commonly referred to as the Yard-Man presumption - that union retiree health care benefits are vested for life in the...more

FAQs by Employers Regarding the Anthem Breach

Do we have any legal obligations under HIPAA? It depends on your contractual relationship with Anthem and whether the group health plan offered by your company is self-insured. If your company’s group health plan is...more

Supreme Court: Ordinary Contract Principles Do Not Allow Inference of Vesting Rights Absent Clear and Express Language

In 2000, M&G Polymers purchased the Point Pleasant Polyester Plant in Apple Grove, WV. At that time, M&G entered into a collective-bargaining agreement and a related Pension, Insurance, and Service Award Agreement (P & I...more

Supreme Court Rejects Yard-Man Inference of Lifetime Vesting of Retiree Health Benefits

The Supreme Court’s recent unanimous decision in M&G Polymers USA, LLC v. Tackett, No. 13-1010, 2015 WL 303218 (S. Ct. January 26, 2015) confirms that ordinary principles of contract law should be observed when interpreting...more

Supreme Court Strikes Down Presumption of Lifetime Retiree Medical Benefits

The New Year holiday is barely over and 2015 has delivered its first significant development affecting manufacturers and their labor unions. On January 26, 2015, in M&G Polymers U.S.A. v. Tackett, a unanimous United States...more

Unlike Diamonds, You Cannot Presume Retiree Medical Benefits Are Forever

Last week, the United States Supreme Court issued a decision that gives unionized employers in Michigan, Ohio, Tennessee, and Kentucky greater ability to modify medical benefits they provide to retirees pursuant to current...more

Top 10 Topics for Directors in 2015: Explore New Trends in Reducing Corporate Health Care Costs

The increasing cost of healthcare is a significant concern for companies that provide health care benefits to their employees. With certain key provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, more commonly known...more

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