Employee experience has a substantial impact on flexible spending account (FSA) plan participation. When employees can rely on easy claims submission, accurate claims processing, and prompt claims reimbursement, participation in FSA plans tends to increase (which, in turn, translates into tax savings for employees and employers alike). BAS provides 24/7 access for employees to submit their FSA claims. Our claims processing team reviews each claim form and claim for proper claim filing and substantiation.
Maintaining real-time operational business continuity (which infers instant or near-instant systems and operational fail-over) over disaster recovery (which infers a time lag in returning to full operations), is a complex and remarkably expensive proposition.
States have until 2014 to implement Exchanges for the purchase of health insurance coverage. State-based Exchanges must be approved or conditionally approved by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services by January 1, 2013 and conduct an open enrollment period by October 1, 2013. Health coverage offered through an Exchange must meet federally-established minimum requirements to be considered qualified health plan coverage (QHP).
The Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act or "COBRA" went into effect in 1986 and gives certain former employees, retirees, spouses, former spouses, and children the right to temporarily continue employer health coverage at group rates. COBRA applies to group health plans sponsored by both private employers and state/local government employers with 20 or more employees in the previous calendar year. Employers with close to 20 employees should review their employee count to confirm an ongoing, or new, responsibility to notify employees of the availability of COBRA coverage.
Q.- We just realized that we have been withholding too much from an employee's pay for benefits. What should we do?
BAS works closely with new clients through the implementation process. Part of that process is establishing benefit plan parameters in MyEnroll.com.
A recent breach of HIPAA reported in the news reinforces the need for employers to have and monitor document destruction policies, including the policies of its service providers. BAS has a standing policy of shredding all paper documents with personal identifying information.
A main goal of health care reform is for all Americans to have access to affordable health coverage either through an employer or through a governmental health insurance exchange.
In today's electronic world, employees' use of social media is widespread both inside and outside the workplace. Employers have new reasons to be cautious of restrictions they place on employees' use of social media outlets such as twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.
Q.- We are a small employer subject to Pennsylvania mini-COBRA. I know that a person who is eligible for other group health coverage is not eligible to continue our coverage under PA mini-COBRA. We just terminated an employee. Her husband has health coverage that allows coverage for spouses. Do we still have to offer our mini-COBRA coverage to her since we know she is eligible for other coverage?
Health Care Exchanges are one of the main tenants of health care reform. Each state is tasked with creating an "Exchange" through which residents can purchase health coverage within an organized and competitive marketplace. If a state does not establish an appropriate Exchange by January 1, 2014, health care reform requires the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to step in and provide a so-called "fallback" insurance exchange. Many states are not moving forward with their own Exchanges, so it is anticipated that the responsibility will largely fall onto the federal government. States have until November 16 to decide if they will run an Exchange on their own or rely on the federal government for Exchange operation.
All group health plans that provide prescription drug coverage must send a notice each year to individuals eligible for Medicare Part D. This notice must state whether the group health plan's coverage is "creditable" or not- whether it is as good as Medicare Part D coverage. The notice has to be sent by October 15 each year.
Q.- I use an electronic debit card for my FSA. Every time I take my son to a specialist I have to provide documentation about my copay. Why is this?
Group health plans should consider implementing a sanction policy to govern violations of the security requirements of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA). A Security Sanction Policy can be aimed at protecting the confidentiality and integrity of personal health information and other sensitive information about plan participants.
BAS' Flexible Spending Account Plan Administration provides needed tools for monitoring FSA participation. As part of our available reporting package, we can send a monthly review of FSA Balances for employees who have active accounts. This report allows employers to plan for upcoming benefits expenses, and to anticipate plan underpayments.
Q.- Our FSA currently runs on a calendar year. Our Medical Plan renews July 1. We want to change the FSA plan year to sync with the Medical Plan. May we do this?
One component of health care reform that has not received much press lately is the new tax on high-cost employer health plans- the so-called "Cadillac Tax."
The Open Enrollment Wizard in MyEnroll.com allows employers to offer their employees a fully customized open enrollment experience, with links and pop-ups for easy reference.
BAS takes the privacy and security of employer and employee data very seriously. BAS utilizes Cisco IronPort as part of its email security protocol. Cisco IronPort monitors and prevents unintended emails from leaving the corporate network.