Benefits Buzz

Posted April 4th, 2016 in Producers, Employers, Individuals
H&R Block®, the largest tax services provider in the country, has indicated that so far this year the average penalty paid by those individuals without health insurance in 2015 is $383. The average penalty paid in 2014 was $172, reflecting an increase of $211 from the previous year. The penalties will be steeper in 2016 being the greater of $695 or 2.5% of income.  
 
Posted March 24th, 2016 in Producers, Employers
Whether it be the ACA, COBRA, ERISA, HIPAA, Section 125, or another regulation, employers can find themselves out of compliance somehow, and they may not even be aware. Here is a list of some common areas of non-compliance, not ranked in any particular order.
 
Posted March 18th, 2016 in Producers, Employers, Individuals
We can categorize health insurance plans in a number of different ways. There are fully-insured and self-insured plans, HMOs and PPOs, high deductibles and low deductibles, and metallic tiers (bronze, silver, gold and platinum) which are used in some market segments. There’s also one other way to categorize health insurance plans, and that’s by their “grandparent” status. The grandparent status determines which Affordable Care Act (ACA) rules a health insurance plan must comply with.
 
Grandfathered Plans 
Posted March 11th, 2016 in Producers, Employers, Individuals

Each year the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issues a set of rules referred to as the “Notice of Benefit and Payment Parameters.”  This set of rules generally addresses changes and new requirements that apply to certain provisions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). 

Posted March 4th, 2016 in Producers

If you have an Illinois producer license, please be aware of the following changes that will apply when renewing your license.

The Illinois Department of Insurance (DOI) recently announced they will no longer mail renewal notices or licenses to producers.

Posted February 26th, 2016 in Producers, Employers, Individuals
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) recently announced a new process that will impact anyone seeking to enroll with a special enrollment period (SEP) on the Healthcare.gov website.  Under the current process, individuals who experience a qualifying event simply need to check a box on the application to be eligible for an SEP.

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