With the upcoming implementation of the “Cadillac Tax” on expensive health plans in 2018, employers are considering their options for softening the potential blow. This includes promoting “consumer directed health plans,” as well as putting more money towards wellness programs, and cost-sharing, which shifts an additional portion of the premium onto employees. Learn more about the Cadillac Tax and its potential impacts in a recent Forbes article.
Some businesses have begun to direct their employees to online exchanges to purchase health insurance plans, and this option seems to be catching on. But how is this beneficial for both the employer and the employee? Mark Zdechlik of NPR, in partnership with Kaiser Health News, discusses the details of this up-and-coming health insurance trend. Article.
With the launch of public and private exchanges under the Affordable Care Act, individuals seeking healthcare now have additional options. However, employers are still deeming it important to offer insurance coverage. According to recent data from the Urban Institute, 83% of workers between the ages of 18 and 64 have the option to be covered under insurance by their employer, and 87% of these individuals chose to take advantage of that option.
A recent Business Insurance article has more on these numbers.
The Health Care Reform landscape is constantly changing and evolving. The information below is meant to remind you of a Transitional Reinsurance Fee deadline on November 15 and instructions on Forms 1094-C, 1095-C, 1094-B, 1095-B, and 1095-A.
Important Deadline: Transitional Reinsurance Fee
Employers with self-funded plans need to be aware of and pay attention to the Transitional Reinsurance Fee and submit their enrollment count via Pay.gov to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services by November 15, 2014. Following submission, employers will receive a bill for the amount owed, with the first payment of $52.50 per covered life due by January 15, 2015, and the second payment of $10.50 per covered life due by November 15, 2015.
Please note: HSAs, as well as HRAs that are integrated with a health plan, are not included in this fee.
Learn more about the Transitional Reinsurance Fee by clicking Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services above. Please note that you do not receive an actual invoice for are prompted with how much you owe upon completing the submission.
Update: Completion of Forms
On August 28, 2014, the IRS released draft instructions to Forms 1094-C, 1095-C, 1094-B, 1095-B and 1095-A. Although these are draft instructions, they offer good insight into the way the IRS will handle the filing requirement for employers, insurance carriers and the exchange.
Click here to read a brief summary for each form.
The enforcement of the Health Plan Identifier (HPID) requirements will be delayed until further notice, according to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Service. This delay applies to all entities that are covered by HIPPA. The HPID is a “standard, unique identifier” of health plans required under HIPAA, and while employers may still go through the process to obtain an HPID, they may also wait to see how this delay pans out. An announcement from CMS explains in detail.
There has been a recent increase in popularity of so-called “skinny plans” by several insurance providers. These plans aim for the bare minimum, meeting value requirements for health insurance coverage but lacking in-patient hospitalization coverage. The IRS and HHS say this is NOT okay, and are planning to issue proposed regulations saying such plans MUST include coverage for in-patient hospitalization services in order to meet minimum value requirements. Under the same notice, it will be stated that employers who promote these “skinny plans” cannot use the online minimum value calculator, as it will not offer an accurate determination of minimum value under these plans. These regulations are set to be finalized in 2015 and will likely apply to plan years beginning on or after November 4, 2014, but will likely not apply to those who have already finalized plans prior to that date.
Contact Eide Bailly’s Employee Benefits team for additional information.
If you are taking advantage of the premium tax credit on a health insurance marketplace and have recently had a change in circumstance through a life event such as marriage or a new job, it is necessary to inform the Health Insurance Marketplace to assure you are receiving the proper amount of assistance. What qualifies as a life event, and why is this important? The following article has the details.