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Employee Benefits

Posted August 22nd, 2017 in Producers, Employers
Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs) are one of the few benefits an employer can provide that often pays for itself (and then some). While there are expenses that will be incurred by the employer when using a third-party administrator for the FSA, there are also payroll tax savings that will offset some or all of those expenses.
 
Posted October 21st, 2016 in Producers, Employers

The only way for an employer to provide certain benefits tax-free to its employees, such as health, dental or vision insurance, is through a Cafeteria Plan, as defined under Section 125 of the Internal Revenue Code. The only way for an employer to have a Cafeteria Plan is by preparing a written plan document which meets the requirements of Code Section 125. Failure to have a written document, or failure to operate a Cafeteria Plan in accordance with the terms of Code Section 125, disqualifies the plan as a Cafeteria Plan and results in gross income to the participants. In other words, any participant in the plan will lose the tax favorable status of the benefits that he or should would have otherwise received.

Posted September 19th, 2016 in Producers, Employers, Individuals
Employers must provide a written notice on an annual basis to any Medicare-eligible individuals who are covered under a group health plan that includes prescription drug coverage. The notice is required to include information as to whether the prescription drug coverage is considered to be creditable. In other words, is the prescription drug coverage at least as good as the standard Medicare Part D plan? 
 
Posted September 6th, 2016 in Producers, Employers, Individuals

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) continues to evolve. Here are 10 changes expected to take effect in 2017. 

Posted August 22nd, 2016 in Producers, Employers
By now, you’ve probably heard about the Employer Mandate on several different occasions. Without reiterating all of the specific details, applicable large employers (ALEs) must offer health insurance coverage to full-time employees that has minimum value and is considered affordable or risk paying penalties.
 
Posted August 15th, 2016 in Producers, Employers
If you are an employer who offers a group health plan to employees who reside in the following states, then the Department of Labor (DOL) requires you to provide a premium assistance notice to employees who are eligible for the group health plan and who are also eligible (or may become eligible) for Medicaid, including the employees children who are also eligible (or may become eligible) for the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP): 
 
Posted May 10th, 2016 in Producers, Employers
What happens to beneficiaries who are enrolled in COBRA when a merger or acquisition occurs?
 
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has some rather thorough and complex guidelines that address COBRA issues when business reorganizations occur, including mergers and acquisitions. In an effort to simplify an otherwise complex situation, we can generally break down the guidance as follows:
 
Posted May 2nd, 2016 in Producers, Employers, Individuals
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued Revenue Procedure 2016-28 last week with information on the Health Savings Account (HSA) and qualified high deductible health plan (HDHP) limits for 2017. All limits will be the same as they are in 2016 with the exception of the HSA contribution limit available to those with a single-only HDHP. That amount will increase by $50 to a maximum of $3,400 for the year. The table below compares the HSA and HDHP limits from 2016 to 2017.
Posted April 11th, 2016 in Producers, Employers
Originally posted on January 2, 2015 and updated on April 10, 2015, June 19, 2015 and April 11, 2016.
 
Posted February 19th, 2016 in Producers, Employers

Premium Only Plans (POP) can generally be defined as a type of Cafeteria Plan where the only pre-tax benefit available to employees are for those of insurance premiums. Now, whenever non-taxable benefits are involved, the IRS will usually have some strict rules in place that must be followed. For Cafeteria Plans, these are referred to as non-discrimination rules, and these rules are in place to ensure the plan doesn’t discriminate in favor of highly compensated and/or key employees.