Last week, President Obama signed into law an omnibus spending appropriations bill, and contained in this were several significant changes to the “Cadillac Tax” section of the Affordable Care Act.Read More
The CheckPoint HR Blog
|The New Year is looming large for businesses with up to 100 employees. On January 1, 2016, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) definition of a small group will expand to include employers with up to 100 employees. If your organization fits in this category, you're about to become community rated, which means health insurers can no longer vary your premiums based on age, gender, health status or other factors. Taking medical underwriting out of the equation means you could see a 20% to 40% health insurance premium increase. You could also see a premium reduction. How your rates will be affected depends on how your group was previously underwritten.|
Beginning in January, a new $2,500 limit will be enforced on salary reduction contributions to health flexible spending arrangements (FSAs). FSAs are often offered to employees to divert income on a pre-tax basis to an account they can use to buy certain services. FSAs allow employees who incur regular health expenses annually to purchase necessary health services with pre-tax dollars.
The Obama administration has released new health care regulations, which will prevent insurers from adjusting premiums based on pre-existing or chronic health conditions. Additionally, insurers cannot tell states what benefits must be included in health exchange plans. According to Kathleen Sebelius, Health and Human Services Secretary, one of the main goals of the health care law is to ensure that no one is discriminated against because of pre-existing conditions.
With the passing of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) in place and only about 16 months until the law takes full effect, employers need to take action. In order to ensure full compliance and effectively communicate to employees how PPACA will affect them, employers must first understand the key components of the mandate. We have established a brief checklist to prepare employers for what’s to come.
According to a new Mercer survey, most employers held out for the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision upholding health care reform before planning a strategy on the provisions in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA). While many employers are now beginning to develop these strategies, the survey found that 16% of the 4,000 employers surveyed are not planning to take action until after the upcoming November elections. Forty percent of respondents stated they would begin examining the laws now that the court has ruled.
Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) were first authorized in January of 2004 as a tax-advantaged portal for medical savings. Every year since its authorization, American’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP) has conducted a survey of the HAS market to gather data on plan enrollment in the United States. According to this year’s survey, plan enrollment in the United States has nearly doubled over the last three years, from 6.1 million participants in 2008 to 11.4 million participants in 2011. In the past year, the number of Americans covered by HSAs linked to high-deductible plans increased by 14%. However, AHIP notes that provisions in the Patient Protections and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) could potentially create some unintended consequences, which may disrupt or even limit the availability of HAS plan coverage. What do you need to know?