Health & Welfare

Federal Agencies Extend Deadlines for COBRA and Health Plan Claims, Appeals, and Special Enrollments

In coordination, the Department of Labor, the Department of Health and Human Services, and the Internal Revenue Service (collectively, the “Agencies”) have extended deadlines for multiple events important to health plan administration that will apply to ERISA-governed plans and governmental plans.  Third-party administrators and COBRA administrators will need to program for these extensions, and ...

IRS Extends Deadlines for Certain Filings and Actions for Employee Welfare Benefits Plan

The IRS has issued Notice 2020-23 to provide employers, employees and retirement plan service providers with relief from business disruptions from the COVID-19 pandemic. Notice 2020-23 automatically extends, to July 15, 2020, certain deadlines for employee welfare benefit plan filings and other specified time-sensitive actions, that would otherwise require completion between April 1, 2020, and ...

Further Guidance from DOL on the Families First Coronavirus Response Act

The Department of Labor (“DOL”) has issued additional FAQs that provide further guidance for employers and employees on the administration of the Emergency Paid Sick Leave (“EPSL”) Act and the Emergency Family and Medical Leave Act (“EFMLA”) under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (“FFCRA”).

Agencies Issue FAQs on Group Health Plan COVID-19 Coverage Requirements

HHS, DOL and IRS (the "Agencies") have jointly issued FAQ 42 to provide guidance on the implementation of the COVID-19 coverage requirements of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act ("FFCRA") and the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security ("CARES") Act. The FFCRA generally requires group health plans and health insurance issuers offering group or individual health insurance coverage ...

IRS Releases Guidance on Requirements for Employers to Claim EPSL and EFMLA Tax Credits Under FFCRA

The IRS has issued guidance for employers with under 500 employees explaining how to claim a tax credit for emergency paid sick leave ("EPSL") and expanded FMLA ("EFMLA") under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act ("FFCRA"). In particular, this guidance includes FAQs that provide information regarding the requirements, limitations and applications for the tax credits. Background. FFCRA ...

DOL Issues Guidance on Emergency Paid Sick Leave and Paid FMLA Under Families First Coronavirus Response Act

The DOL has issued a series of FAQs that provide guidance for employers administering the Emergency Paid Sick Leave ("ESPL") and the Emergency Family and Medical Leave Act ("EFMLA") under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act ("FFCRA").   

HDHPs May Pay for COVID-19 Testing and Treatment

The IRS has issued Notice 2020-15 permitting High Deductible Health Plans ("HDHPs") to cover testing and treatment for COVID-19, without affecting the status of a person as an "eligible individual" for tax exempt Health Saving Account ("HSA") contribution purposes.

Agencies Issue Proposed Rules Regarding Health Care Transparency

By Roberta Casper Watson and Barry Salkin Last June, in Executive Order 13877, President Trump directed HHS, Treasury, and Labor (collectively, the “Agencies”) to solicit comments on how providers, insurers, and group health plans could be required to disclose information about expected out-of-pocket costs before a patient receives care.  In response, the Agencies issued proposed regulations, ...

No Statute of Limitations Protection Gained from Filing Forms for Employer Shared Responsibility Penalties

The IRS Office of Chief Counsel has released a memorandum stating that employers are not protected by a statute of limitations from the ACA's employer shared responsibility penalties ("ESRP"), even if they file the required forms relating to the penalties. (IRS Chief Counsel Memorandum 20200801F; Dec. 26, 2019). The ACA's employer shared responsibility provisions apply to an employer that is an ...

CMS Proposes Reporting Penalty Rule

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services ("CMS") has proposed methods to calculate and impose civil penalties when a group health plan ("GHP") or a non-group health plan fails to comply with the Medicare as Secondary Payer ("MSP") reporting requirements.