Understanding Employee Benefits

Oral COBRA Notice OK?

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In a recent District Court opinion, a judge dismissed a COBRA claim against an employer based on the oral notice the employer gave a former employee of her right to continue coverage under COBRA. The court said that the statute does not specify the form the notice must take and... Read More

Topics: Health Plan

Filed Your 2013 Health and Welfare Plan 5500s? Did you Include Your M-1 Attachments?

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A provision of the Affordable Care Act of 2010 (ACA) included additional reporting requirements and greater U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) oversight of Multiple Employer Welfare Arrangements (MEWAs). The DOL’s Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) issued final rules earlier in 2014 which clarified the requirements for initial and annual Form... Read More

Topics: Cafeteria Plans, Form 5500s, Health Care Reform, Health Plan, Welfare Plans

An SPD Can be a Plan Document

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In Cigna v. Amara, the U.S. Supreme Court held that the plan document is the governing document for an ERISA plan and that in a conflict between the plan document and the summary plan description (SPD), the plan document must be enforced. A participant misled by an SPD may be... Read More

Topics: Health Plan, Uncategorized

More About HRAs and Some About EAPs

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I blogged recently about IRS and Department of Labor (DOL) guidance restricting the ability of employers to subsidize individual health insurance premiums for their employees after December 31, 2013. That IRS and DOL guidance also addressed a few other issues. The guidance provides that HRA amounts credited to an employee... Read More

Topics: Health Care Reform, Health Plan