Employers who offer qualified transportation fringe benefits have a new resource for administering those benefits. The IRS has released a video explaining how tax reform has changed the way employee transportation fringe benefits may be deducted and when they must be included in wages. The video addresses parking, public transportation and bicycle commuting.
Q.- We will be having summer interns working for us in July and August. They will be working 40 hours per week. Do we have to offer them health coverage because of their hours?
An applicable large employer must offer its full-time employees affordable health coverage or pay a penalty. Employers have two options for counting their employees’ hours to determine full-time status.
Q.- We use the look-back method for determining full-time status. We have an employee who is full-time for the stability period but is switching to part-time later this summer. We know we have to continue to offer him health coverage. He doesn’t want to pay for the coverage when he has a smaller paycheck. Are we allowed to let him drop the coverage mid-year?
The U.S. Departments of Health and Human Services, Labor and Treasury issued a joint rule expanding the use of Health Reimbursement Accounts (HRAs). An HRA is a tax-favored benefit plan that reimburses employees for the cost of medical expenses and health insurance premiums. An HRA is completely funded by an employer with no employee contributions.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services issued proposed regulations changing certain aspects of the Affordable Care Act.
Employers should remember that the Affordable Care Act requires more than just filing forms each year. ACA requires most employers to provide newly hired employees with a written notice describing health coverage options available through the Health Care Marketplace (the Exchange).
Q.- An employee terminated. How long do we have to send him a COBRA notice?
A recent IRS information letter confirms that an expense must qualify as medical care under Code section 213 to be reimbursed from a health flexible spending account (FSA). The person submitting the letter inquired as to whether costs for menstrual care products would be eligible for reimbursement from health savings accounts, flexible spending accounts and other tax-favored accounts. While the IRS does not answer the specific question, it does provide guidance on how to determine if an expense is for medical care.
Q.- An employee has a babysitter taking care of his 3-year old son while he is at work. The babysitter is going to wash the child’s clothes and make his lunch. Can the employee be reimbursed from his Dependent Day Care FSA for the babysitter’s full salary, or does he have to separate out the time she spends cooking for the child and doing his laundry?
The U.S. Department of Labor has resources for employers, employees and educators on apprenticeship training programs.