Benefits Buzz

Posted April 30th, 2020 in Employers, Producers, Individuals

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has issued guidance that will impact COBRA procedures, special enrollment periods, and claims procedures. The guidance will extend the length of certain time periods applicable to group health plans, disability plans and other welfare plans regulated by the ERISA law. Plan participants and beneficiaries will have additional time to do the following:

Posted April 28th, 2020 in Employers, Producers

As a reminder, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) created a research institute known as the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI). The goal of PCORI is to help patients and those who care for them make better-informed decisions about healthcare choices.

Posted April 23rd, 2020 in Employers, Producers

If you’re familiar with the individual health insurance market, you should be aware that the Affordable Care Act (ACA) made significant changes to the application and enrollment processes starting in 2014.

Posted April 21st, 2020 in Employers, Producers, Individuals
Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) have been available since 2004. Employees and individuals enrolled in qualified high deductible health plans (HDHPs) can put money into an HSA to pay for medical expenses at a later date. The contributions are tax-deductible, and if money is used to pay for medical expenses, the money can be withdrawn from the HSA tax-free. Unlike Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs), there is no cap on the amount of money that can be rolled over from one year to the next.
 
Posted April 16th, 2020 in Employers, Producers

Making Plan Changes During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Needless to say, these last several weeks have created challenging times for a significant number of employers. Stay-at-home orders and other impacts from the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic have put many employers in a position where they must make sudden health plan and benefit changes.

Posted April 14th, 2020 in Employers, Producers

The short answer is that they are both defined contribution plans.

The Individual Coverage Health Reimbursement Arrangement (ICHRA) is an employer-sponsored defined contribution health plan whereas a 401(k) is a defined contribution retirement plan. 

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