Author: Kathleen A. Berger, CEBS

Question: We recently hired an employee who has health coverage through the military (TRICARE). Our company provides a group major medical plan along with a health reimbursement arrangement (HRA). How will our benefits coordinate with TRICARE? Answer: TRICARE offers several different health service and coverage programs. For active-duty servicemembers (ADSMs), TRICARE Prime is their primary and…

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has updated the model notice for employers to use to inform employees about the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). All employers with group health plans are required to distribute a CHIP notice at least once a year to employees living in certain states. There is no need to send…

Do you offer health coverage to your employees? Does your group health plan cover outpatient prescription drugs? If so, federal law requires you to complete an online disclosure form every year with information about your plan’s drug coverage. You have 60 days from the start of your health plan year to complete the form. For…

Question: Our company received a survey from the U.S. Census Bureau asking about the health coverage we offer to employees, how much it costs, etc. Is this an official survey? Do we have to provide the information? Answer: It appears your company has been randomly selected for the federal government’s Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (MEPS)….

Last Friday’s ruling by a Texas federal district court judge does not have any effect on the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and how it operates. All current provisions of the ACA, including the employer mandate, protections for pre-existing conditions, and eligibility for children up to age 26, continue to apply. The federal government has posted…

On November 29, 2018, the IRS released Notice 2018-94 to extend the due date for employers to furnish 2018 Form 1095-C or 1095-B under the Affordable Care Act’s employer reporting requirement. Employers will have an extra month to prepare and distribute the 2018 form to individuals. The due dates for filing forms with the IRS…

The U.S. Department of Labor has issued compliance guidance for benefit plans, employers and employees, and service providers who are impacted by the California wildfires. The guidance generally provides relief from various ERISA requirements and time limits for entities in the disaster area. This follows the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announcement extending certain filing dates….

Question: Our company received a rebate check from our health insurance carrier. As the employer, we pay the bulk of premiums, although employees who enroll for coverage do pay a portion of the cost. Are there restrictions on how we can use the rebate money? Answer: Yes, there are restrictions on using the rebate. The…

Today, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced annual inflation adjustments for more than 50 tax provisions, including an increase in voluntary employee contributions to employer-sponsored healthcare flexible spending arrangements (HFSAs) to $2,700 for plan years beginning in 2019, up from the 2018 limit of $2,650. The IRS also announced an increase in the 2019 monthly…

Do you employ six or more workers in Massachusetts? If so, be sure that you or your payroll administrator complete the new Health Insurance Responsibility Disclosure (HIRD) required by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts by November 30. What You Need to Know It’s new. The new HIRD form is not the same as the forms and…