Innovative Benefit Planning Blog

Healthy for the Holidays

Posted On: December 11, 2019 | Categorized as: Workplace Wellness

The holiday season brings family, friends, festivities and lots of food! The temptations are everywhere and with all the extra activities, your daily routine gets disrupted. How can you stay on track when splurging is so apparent? We can help! Here are a few tips to help keep you healthy through the holidays: Holiday proof your plan. While you can’t control what is served during the holidays, you can control our plan of attack. Stay on schedule. Stay as close to your normal meal times as possible or if you are invited to a party, offer to bring a healthy dish.   Be smarter than the buffet. When you are faced with lots of choices, make healthy choices easier by starting with vegetables to take the edge off your appetite or have a small plate of something you really like and then move away from the buffet.   Keep moving.…


November Compliance Recap

Posted On: December 9, 2019 | Categorized as: Compliance

November was a busy month in the employee benefits world. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) released draft 2019 instructions for Forms 1094-B, 1095-B, 1094-C, and 1095-C. The IRS also released health plan limits and various compensation, benefit, and contribution levels under qualified retirement plans for 2020. The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released inflation-adjusted civil monetary penalty amounts. The Department of Labor (DOL) released advance copies of Form 5500 and related instructions for 2019. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released Summary of Benefits and Coverage (SBC) materials and supporting documents for plan years beginning 2021. A district court vacated the conscience rights protection final rule. The IRS, DOL, and HHS (collectively, Departments) released proposed rules on coverage transparency for health plans and issuers and final rules on price transparency requirements for hospitals. IRS Releases Draft 2019 Instructions for Forms 1094-B, 1095-B, 1094-C, and 1095-C The…


IRS Extends ACA Reporting Deadline for Furnishing Statements for 2019 from January 31 to March 2, 2020

Posted On: December 3, 2019 | Categorized as: Compliance, Employee Benefits

In Notice 2019-63, the IRS extended the 2020 deadline for employers and insurers to furnish individual statements on 2019 health coverage and full-time employee status (Forms 1095-B and 1095-C) from January 31 to March 2. The notice also extends the good-faith penalty relief to 2019 for incorrect or incomplete reports due in 2020. In the Notice, the IRS did not extend the due date for filing the 1094 and 1095 forms with the IRS. If filing by paper, forms are due February 28, 2020, or March 31, 2020, if filing electronically. Please remember that filers can still take advantage of an automatic 30-day extension of the IRS filing deadline by submitting Form 8809 before the relevant due date. IRS indicated that it will continue to require the Filing of Form 1095-B and the completion of Part III of Form 1095-C for 2019. Notice 2019-63 also extends the good-faith relief to 2019. This relief applies to missing and inaccurate taxpayer identification numbers…


Innovative’s CEO, Terriann Procida, is Awarded “2019 Executive of the Year”

Posted On: December 3, 2019 | Categorized as: Company News

Innovative Benefit Planning is pleased to announce that Terriann Procida has been awarded by South Jersey Biz as one of their 2019 Executive of the Year Award winners! The award recognizes and awards 20 South Jersey professionals who have “paved the way for success.” “As you read through our 2019 Executives of the Year, you’ll find many similarities between all of them, such as their strong work ethic, dedication to their passion, setting their employees on the right path and making a difference by serving the community. But one thing that truly stands out is their experience. All of these individuals are seasoned professionals and self-starters who have taken their companies to new heights and have seen tremendous success.” -South Jersey Biz Terriann Procida is a founding partner of Innovative Benefit Planning and has over 25 years of experience in the insurance industry, providing employee benefit services to business owners…


Innovative Welcomes Nurse Advocate, Erica Polaneczky, MSN, APRN, ANP-C

Posted On: November 20, 2019 | Categorized as: Company News, Workplace Wellness

We are excited to announce the latest member of the Innovative Benefits team! Please join us in welcoming Erica Polaneczky, MSN, APRN, ANP-C, as our Nurse Advocate.  As part of our Workplace Wellness team, Erica will help Innovative build, plan, coordinate, and deliver health promotion activities tailored specifically for each client’s company culture and member population.  She will work with our internal team and our clients to improve health and wellness opportunities and outcomes while increasing the accessibility of care and reducing costs. Our new Nurse Advocate will also develop and present seminars on health and wellness to our clients, and coach and counsel individual client-members to help them achieve optimal health. Erica’s healthcare expertise can help clients navigate the healthcare system, including interpreting physician instructions and medication compliance. Prior to accepting this position, Erica spent more than 15 years providing pre-admission testing at Hahnemann University Hospital, as well as…


Required Minimum Distributions

Posted On: November 20, 2019 | Categorized as: Retirement Plans

As the calendar year draws to a close, older plan participants may have to consider taking a required minimum distribution (RMD) from their qualified retirement plan. A required minimum distribution is a withdrawal from a qualified retirement plan for participants who have reached the age of 70½. While many qualified plans have services to notify participants that they have to take an RMD, it is important for plan sponsors to understand the mechanics and rules governing required minimum distributions. How is an RMD Calculated? An individual’s RMD is normally calculated using the “Uniform Lifetime Table,” which is an IRS chart that assigns a “Life Expectancy Factor” to each age. The previous 12/31 balance is divided by the “Life Expectancy Factor” to calculate the required minimum distribution. Other tables are used if either: The spouse is the sole beneficiary and they are more than 10 years younger than the participant. OR…


Avoiding and Correcting Common Mistakes on the I-9

Posted On: November 19, 2019 | Categorized as: HR Consulting

Let’s talk about I-9s. You probably filled them out for each employee, filed them away and never thought about them again, right? This can be problematic as there are several common mistakes made on the I-9 form. An audit can be a very costly experience if your forms aren’t all in order. Let’s review some of the most common (honest) mistakes that are made on the I-9 form. Section 1. Employee Information and Attestation Section 1 of the I-9 must be completed by the employee on the first day of employment. In this section, employees often don’t realize they need to check off the Preparer and/or Translator Certification box. If the employee did not use a preparer or translator, the box below should be left blank. Section 2: Employer or Authorized Representative Review and Verification This section must be completed by the employer within three days of the employee’s first…


Innovative Welcomes New Director of Wellness & Engagement

Posted On: November 18, 2019 | Categorized as: Company News, Workplace Wellness

We are pleased to announce another new member has joined the Innovative team! Please help us welcome Patricia Pellicore, CWP, as Director of Wellness and Engagement.  As Director of Wellness and Engagement Patricia will manage, develop, grow, and promote the numerous positive features of Innovative’s wellness initiatives. One of her roles is developing program strategies, analyzing biometric testing, health risk assessments, pharmaceutical use, and claims data to provide effective individualized initiatives around health education and disease management. She will also develop wellness seminars, training courses and communication materials for our clients. Moreover, Patricia will be a valuable resource for our member population. Prior to accepting this position, Patricia spent more than 20 years designing and implementing employee engagement and wellness programs. She most recently served as the Director of Wellness Operations for a personal health advocacy organization. In this role, she managed wellness coaching and biometric data management units, as…


Innovative Myth Series #11-As a plan sponsor, I shouldn’t consider adding a 3(16) service to my plan.

Posted On: November 14, 2019 | Categorized as: Retirement Plans

An existing client had experienced problems with their 401(k) plan audit for several consecutive years due to internal operational issues. The client requested our help in determining whether they should spend the money for a 3(16) service to help improve efficiencies and eliminate some of the operational errors they were experiencing. See how Innovative helped the client determine if it was the right strategy, move to the 3(16) and reduce their costs and audit error rate. Download full case study here. Let Innovative perform a complimentary review of your plan, contact our retirement planning team here.


Innovative’s Well-being @ Work 2019 Summit Recap

Posted On: November 13, 2019 | Categorized as: Company News, Workplace Wellness

As employers, what do we need to create workplaces that are connected, flourishing and well with both business and employee in mind?This year Innovative Benefits Planning hosted our inaugural well-being summit that was dedicated to making workplaces healthier.  The room was packed full of HR professionals, C-Suite decision-makers, health and well-being professionals and top well-being vendors in the industry.The morning kicked off with a healthy breakfast, opportunity to participate in voluntary biometrics with Cardio-Kinetics and discuss employer well-being options with over 20 vendors.  The set up was as engaging as it gets in the Hall of Fame Club of Citizens Bank Park with mindful networking taking place in every well-designed event space.What does a committed and aligned organization look like when it comes to health and well-being?At its core, organizations need a committed leadership team that believes in the power of well-being and the philosophy of workplace well-being.  When you…


Innovative Welcomes Lisa as Director of Compliance

Posted On: November 13, 2019 | Categorized as: Company News, Compliance

We are excited to announce the latest addition to the Innovative Benefit Planning team! Please join us in welcoming Lisa A. Hill as our Director of Compliance.  As Director of Compliance, Lisa will be a valuable resource to Innovative’s leadership team, employees, and clients in ensuring all compliance needs are met. Lisa will be critical in guiding Innovative and our clients through federal, state, and industry regulations and standards. She will be responsible for developing, overseeing, and evaluating control systems to prevent or deal with violations of legal guidelines and internal policies. Moreover, Lisa will be a valuable resource to guide our clients through the proper steps and identify potential liabilities associated with various employee benefits options. Prior to accepting this position, Lisa spent 16 years as an attorney with law firms in California. During that time, she litigated wage and hour class actions and advised clients on such topics…


Diabetes Awareness Month

Posted On: November 13, 2019 | Categorized as: Workplace Wellness

November is National Diabetes Awareness month! According to the American Diabetes Association, nearly half of all American adults have diabetes or prediabetes, yet most do not fully understand the illness. Unaddressed diabetes can take a heavy toll medically, financially, and personally. Diabetes also increases the risk of developing other chronic conditions. Becoming educated on the subject is the first step in properly managing or preventing diabetes. Diabetes FAQs How is diabetes diagnosed? Diabetes can be diagnosed through blood tests for glucose and/or hemoglobin A1c. Elevated blood markers must be present on two separate occasions for a formal diagnosis to be assigned. What is insulin? Insulin is a hormone released from the pancreas when the sugar from carbohydrates gets into the bloodstream. Insulin signals the cells of the body to take up glucose for energy or storage. What is the difference between Type I and Type II Diabetes? Put simply, type…


Innovative Benefit Planning Earns Specialized Advisor Recognition

Posted On: November 12, 2019 | Categorized as: Retirement Plans

Our firm was founded on the principles of integrity, professionalism and exceptional client service. We are also deeply committed to continuous improvement. Our dedication to doing what is best for you, our clients, prompted us to engage CEFEX, the Centre for Fiduciary Excellence, LLC to audit our processes. In June of 2019, we contacted the CEFEX organization and requested an independent analyst provide us with a comprehensive independent review.  The process was rigorous and their assessment took months to complete. Now, after going through the audit and carefully evaluating our procedures, we are proud to share with you that Innovative Benefit Planning is a CEFEX certified Investment Advisor. This certification signifies our commitment to uphold the highest level of fiduciary care and that has a direct impact on you, your plan and your employees. As a plan sponsor, the Department of Labor (DOL) identifies the following as your fiduciary responsibilities:…


2020 IRS Contribution Limits Released

Posted On: November 8, 2019 | Categorized as: Compliance, Employee Benefits

On Wednesday, the IRS announced new contribution limits for medical FSA, Commuter Benefit, and HSA plans for 2020.  The FSA contribution will increase to $2,750, a $50 increase from current limits. The HSA contribution limit for individuals with a high deductible health plan (HDHP) will likewise be raised from $3,500 for an individual and $7,000 for a family to $3,550 for an individual and $7,100 for a family.  The IRS also adjusted the contribution limits for adoption assistance programs, increasing the limit from $14, 080 to $14,300. The current and new contribution limits are listed below:   2019 2020 Medical FSA Contribution Limit   $2,700 $2,750 Monthly Commuter Benefits Contribution Limit $265 $270 HSA Contribution Limit Single:   $3,500 Family: $7,000 Single:   $3,550 Family: $7,100 Adoption Assistance Limit   $14,080 $14,300


October Compliance Recap

Posted On: November 5, 2019 | Categorized as: Compliance

Compliance Recap-October 2019 October was a relatively quiet month in the employee benefits world. The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas vacated portions of the current rule implementing Section 1557 that prohibit discrimination on the basis of gender identity and pregnancy termination. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit affirmed a district court's preliminary injunction of final rules regarding contraceptive coverage exemptions. The Office for Civil Rights (OCR) and the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) released the latest version of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Security Risk Assessment Tool. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) updated its webpage that has general information about the CP233J notice. The Treasury released its 2019-2020 Priority Guidance Plan. District Court Vacates Parts of ACA Section 1557 Nondiscrimination Rule As background, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) Section 1557 provides that…


Innovative Myth Series #10: When Transferring Service Providers, There are no Pitfalls, Part 2 – Market Value Adjustments and Fixed Accounts

Posted On: October 24, 2019 | Categorized as: Retirement Plans

A new client engaged Innovative after they decided to transfer their current plan to a new service provider. After our initial investment review, we noticed there was an existing Stable Value Fund, which was subject to a market value adjustment (MVA). When an MVA is being applied, a complete fund liquidation may result in a loss to the plan and participants. See how Innovative helped our client in moving their assets with no loss to the participants. Download full case study here. Let Innovative perform a complimentary review of your plan, contact our retirement planning team here.


Diversity Discussion: Terms to Know

Posted On: October 23, 2019 | Categorized as: HR Consulting

The concept of diversity is often presented to employees only in the negative – employees are told not to discriminate, or not to harass. But diversity is much more than that – when embraced and fostered, it promotes creative, engaged, happy workplaces. Beginning the diversity discussion with your workforce can be difficult, but there are several important terms to know that can be excellent ways to open a dialogue with your managers and other employees. This is not an all-encompassing list of terms, but it is a good place to start. Once you understand these concepts, it will put you in a better place to begin to have these conversations within your workplace.   Diversity Diversity is synonymous with variety, but in this context, it is much more than that. Diversity is the acceptance and understanding that we are all unique individuals coming from different backgrounds. It means respecting people…


Should you Consider a Safe Harbor Contribution Feature?

Posted On: October 23, 2019 | Categorized as: Retirement Plans

Does your organization’s retirement plan frequently refund money to highly compensated employees (HCE)? Do you want to provide a great incentive to your employees to save for retirement and perhaps allow them to retire earlier? Would the owners and highly compensated employees like to save more of their own money? Do your key employees own a significant portion of plan assets? These are among the common reasons a company might implement a Safe Harbor contribution feature for their retirement plan. If a company agrees to make a Safe Harbor contribution to their retirement plan, then the plan is exempt from nondiscrimination testing for the plan year. These include: Average Deferral Percentage tests, Average Contribution Percentage tests, and Top Heavy tests. Depending on your company, it might be wise, for several reasons, to avoid these tests and the actions required from failing them. There are several contribution calculation methods that qualify…


Ryan Kastner Receives Young Professionals Leadership Award

Posted On: October 22, 2019 | Categorized as: Company News

Congratulations to our Vice President, Consulting, Ryan Kastner, for being named to Burlington County Regional Chamber of Commerce’s ("BCRCC") Young Professionals Leadership Class of 2019. The award honors professionals under the age of 40 who demonstrate outstanding leadership in the Burlington County Business Community. Winners are selected based on their civic engagement and volunteerism, enthusiasm in leadership roles and acting as a mentor to those around them. Ryan is a true leader to his clients, colleagues and our community, so congrats Ryan on this well-deserved award! Ryan and the other recipients were honored at the Young Professionals Network Leadership Summit on Friday, October 18th at the DoubleTree Suites in Mount Laurel. Please join us on congratulating Ryan and all the award recipients!


Oral Health Awareness Month

Posted On: October 15, 2019 | Categorized as: Workplace Wellness

Did you know that your oral health offers clues about your overall health — or that problems in your mouth can affect the rest of your body? Protect yourself by learning more about the connection between your oral health and overall health. What's the connection between oral health and overall health? Like other areas of the body, your mouth teems with bacteria — mostly harmless. But your mouth is the entry point to your digestive and respiratory tracts, and some of these bacteria can cause disease. Normally the body's natural defenses and good oral health care, such as daily brushing and flossing, keep bacteria under control. However, without proper oral hygiene, bacteria can reach levels that might lead to oral infections, such as tooth decay and gum disease. What conditions can be linked to oral health? Your oral health might contribute to various diseases and conditions, including: Endocarditis. This infection…


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