BAS News-to-Use


 

Life Events for Employees

MyEnroll360 offers HR administrators the ability to review employee life event changes.

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New Delaware Mini-COBRA Law

The State of Delaware enacted a temporary mini-COBRA law, joining several other states that require continuation of group health coverage for insured, small employer group health plans. Beginning June 21, 2012, participants in small-employer health plans in Delaware may be eligible for continuation of health coverage for up to 9 months upon the occurrence of certain qualifying events. The law specifically provides that it will not be in effect if the Affordable Care Act is deemed unconstitutional by the United States Supreme Court, and it is intended to expire January 1, 2014.

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Employer Access to Social Media Password Information

Increasingly, employers are turning to social media for recruiting and as part of their overall business operations strategy. Consulting social media can provide an insight into an applicant's or employee's personality and judgment sense, and could serve as an inexpensive alternative or supplement to formal background checks.

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Benefits Outsourcing a Desired Alternative for Many Companies

More employers are outsourcing benefits than ever before. Benefits outsourcing is a desirable alternative for many companies, particularly those companies in the mid to large-size market. Health care reform concerns and the complexities of compliance are cited as reasons for the increase in benefits outsourcing among organizations.

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Limits on HDHP/HSA Plan Structures

The IRS announced new inflation-adjusted Health Savings Account (HSA) contribution limits and High Deductible Health Plan (HDHP) limits for 2013. The new limits reflect cost-of-living adjustments permitted under the Internal Revenue Code.

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Medicare Part D Creditable Coverage Values Increased for 2013

Employers sponsoring group health plans that offer prescription drug coverage to individuals eligible for Medicare Part D (generally those age 65 and older, including active employees, retirees, COBRA participants, and dependents) must disclose to those individuals whether the group health plan coverage is creditable or non-creditable. Prescription drug coverage is considered creditable for Medicare Part D purposes if the employer's coverage is, on average, at least as good as standard Medicare prescription drug coverage. To make this determination, the employer must determine if the plan's actuarial value equals or exceeds the actuarial value of standard Part D coverage.

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Criminal Background Checks May Violate EEOC Policy

Federal law does not clearly prohibit an employer from asking about arrest and conviction records in the pre-employment or employment context. However, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission issued enforcement guidance on an employer's use of arrest and conviction records for making employment decisions.

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Benefit Cost Containment Strategies

Employers face an ongoing struggle of trying to offer rich, competitive benefits packages while keeping benefit dollars under control. Colonial Life & Accident Insurance Company released a white paper identifying five benefit strategies that have been proven to help with increasing benefits costs. According to Colonial Life, public sector employers face increased benefits obstacles due to revenue shortfalls and increased scrutiny of government spending. The following five strategies have been proven to help with cost containment in the public sector and can be applied easily to the private and not-for-profit marketplace.

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Cafeteria Plan Documents Required

Employers that provide health and other welfare plan benefits on a pre-tax basis through a cafeteria plan must have a written document describing the rules relating to the pre-tax arrangement. As a condition of receiving favorable tax treatment, the IRS requires each cafeteria plan under section 125 of the Code to be properly documented.

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Dependent Eligibility Verification

Statistics show that often employers spend a large amount of their health care dollars on coverage for non-eligible dependents. When health coverage is available to dependents of employees, employers may wish to closely monitor those individuals who are enrolled in the plan under dependent status.

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