IRS Issues 2023 HSA and HRA Limits

Category: Compliance

IRS Issues 2023 HSA and HRA Limits

Posted On: May 5, 2022 | Categorized as: Compliance

The IRS issued Revenue Procedure 2022-24, to announce the 2023 inflation adjusted amounts for health savings accounts (HSAs) under Section 223 of the Internal Revenue Code (Code) and the maximum amount employers may contribute for excepted benefit health reimbursement arrangements (HRAs). Significant increases to the limits are a result of the recent spike in inflation seen in the U.S. HSA Limits For calendar year 2023, the HSA annual limitation on deductions for an individual with self-only coverage under a high deductible health plan is $3,850. The 2023 HSA annual limitation on deductions for an individual with family coverage under a high deductible health plan is $7,750. The IRS guidance provides that for calendar year 2023, a “high deductible health plan” is defined as a health plan with an annual deductible that is not less than $1,500 for self-only coverage or $3,000 for family coverage, and the annual out-of-pocket expenses (deductibles, copayments,…

2021 EEO-1 Component 1 Data Collection Portal is Now Open

Posted On: April 22, 2022 | Categorized as: Compliance

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has announced that the 2021 EEO-1 Component 1 data collection portal is now open. Eligible employers have until May 17, 2022, to submit data to the portal. The EEO-1 Component 1 report is a mandatory annual data collection that requires all private sector employers with 100 or more employees, and federal contractors with 50 or more employees meeting certain criteria, to submit demographic workforce data, including data by race/ethnicity, sex and job categories. The filing by eligible employers of the EEO-1 Component 1 Report is required under section 709(c) of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e-8(c),  and 29 CFR 1602.7-.14 and 41 CFR 60-1.7(a). Employers can find additional eligibility information here. In an effort to modernize the filing process, the EEOC has rolled out additional self-service options for filers, as well as provided a…

Proposed Rule Would Fix the “Family Glitch”

Posted On: April 6, 2022 | Categorized as: Compliance

aca on blocks with calculator on desk

Under the current Affordable Care Act (ACA) regulations, employer-based health insurance is deemed “affordable” if the employee’s contribution for self-only coverage does not exceed the affordability threshold in a given year (9.61% in 2022). Those who do not have access to affordable employer-based coverage may qualify for a premium tax credit through the healthcare marketplace. As a result of the current definition of affordability, an estimated 5 million people fall into what is known as the “family glitch,” which prevents them from receiving a subsidy through the marketplace as the determination of whether the coverage meets the affordability threshold is focused on the employee’s coverage, not the family member’s. On April 5, 2022, the Treasury Department and Internal Revenue Service (IRS), released a proposed rule that, if enacted, would address this policy loophole in the ACA. This proposed rule is a result of an Executive Order President Biden signed in…

House Passes Secure Act 2.0 Bill

Posted On: April 5, 2022 | Categorized as: Compliance

congress building - house of representatives passes secure act 2.0 bill

In a 414-5 bipartisan vote, the House of Representatives has passed a bill that, if enacted, is said to improve the retirement savings system in the United States by expanding coverage and increasing retirement savings. The Securing a Strong Retirement Act, colloquially known as Secure Act 2.0 builds on the Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement Act (SECURE), which was signed into law in December 2019. Some highlights from Secure Act 2.0, include: Most employers would be required to automatically enroll eligible workers in NEW 401(k) plans with an initial 3% contribution rate. The contribution rate would then increase on an annual basis until the contribution reaches 10% of the employee’s salary. Eligible employees would have the opportunity to opt out of enrollment or select a different contribution rate Increase in the age for mandatory distributions to begin. Starting January 1, 2022, the age would increase from 72 to…

Temporary Flexibilities for Expired List B Identity Documents to End

Posted On: April 1, 2022 | Categorized as: Compliance

In May 2020, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) instituted a temporary policy which allowed employees to present expired List B identification documents for I-9 purposes. As a reminder, Form I-9 is used to verify the identity and employment authorization of individuals hired for employment in the United States. This relief was temporary and initiated as a means to lessen some of the burdens imposed on issuing authorities as they struggled to timely renew documents in the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic.Starting May 1, 2022, employers will no longer be able to accept expired identification documents when verifying employee work eligibility for Form I-9. Employers who accepted expired documents between May 1, 2020 and April 30, 2022 will be required to update the Form I-9 of current employees with an unexpired document by July 31, 2022. Acceptable documentation includes a renewed version of the previously presented expired List B…

Government Funding Bill Extends CARES Act Relief for HDHPs

Posted On: March 22, 2022 | Categorized as: Compliance

President Biden recently signed The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2022 (CAA) into law. As part of the 2022 CAA, COVID-related telehealth coverage can be covered at no cost-share for High Deductible Health Plans (HDHPs) in a similar fashion to what was allowed under the CARES Act starting April 1, 2022 through December 31, 2022. The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) allowed first-dollar telehealth coverage under HDHPs. This relief allowed participants to utilize telehealth services prior to satisfying the plan’s deductible without risk of disqualification, which would prevent continuing contributions to a health savings account (HSA). The relief afforded under the CARES Act ended December 31, 2021, thus highlighting a need for additional relief, either temporary or permanent. While it is unclear whether permanent legislation expanding telehealth coverage in this manner will be enacted, the new relief, although temporary, comes as welcome news to participants and plan sponsors.This…

The DOL’s Compliance Assistance Release No. 2022-01 401(k) Plan Investments in “Cryptocurrencies”

Posted On: March 16, 2022 | Categorized as: Compliance, Retirement Plans

As plan advisors, we’ve had increasing questions from plan sponsors and committees about the availability and merits of Crypto backed investment options.   With their release last week, the DOL has made their position very clear: they will investigate plan fiduciaries who make these types of investments available, even through brokerage windows. The following was released from the DOL: In recent months, the Department of Labor has become aware of firms marketing investments in cryptocurrencies to 401(k) plans as potential investment options for plan participants.1 The Department cautions plan fiduciaries to exercise extreme care before they consider adding a cryptocurrency option to a 401(k) plan’s investment menu for plan participants. Under ERISA, fiduciaries must act solely in the financial interests of plan participants and adhere to an exacting standard of professional care. Courts have commonly referred to these prudence and loyalty obligations as the “highest known to the law.” Fiduciaries who…

January 2022 Compliance Recap

Posted On: February 16, 2022 | Categorized as: Compliance

January brought breaking news that the U.S. Supreme Court (the Court) would stop OSHA from enforcing its employee COVID-19 test or vaccinate emergency temporary standard (ETS) for employers with 100 or more employees. Although the decision doesn’t end the OSHA ETS permanently, it means that the ETS is unlikely to be upheld in its current form. The Court left in place a COVID-19 vaccine employer mandate for Medicare and Medicaid-certified entities. The decision does not end the debate, but it does mean employers will continue to be subject to varying standards at the state level with no uniform federal standard.In other news, health plans were notified that they must cover COVID-19 over-the-counter tests at no cost to enrollees, with only days to put a plan in place to comply with the rule. This left employers and pharmacy benefit administrators scrambling to analyze the guidance and be ready within days to…

Departments Clarify Required Coverage of At-Home OTC COVID-19 Tests

Posted On: February 8, 2022 | Categorized as: Compliance

The Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and the Treasury (collectively, the Departments) recently issued updated FAQ guidance to explain how employer group health plans may comply with the requirement to cover with no cost-sharing or preauthorization at-home over-the-counter (OTC) COVID-19 tests provided with no prescription or health care provider involvement. Initial guidance had created safe harbors for plans to make at-home tests available through a preferred provider network or direct-to-consumer shipping program. Under that guidance, plan sponsors could, under certain conditions, limit the number of OTC at-home tests covered per month to no more than eight tests per individual per month, and limit reimbursement for any such tests purchased outside of an established provider network or direct shipping program to no more than the lesser of $12 or the cost of the test.Initial rules, which were effective for tests purchased on or after January 15, have left many…

Delivery Requirements for Summary Plan Description

Posted On: February 4, 2022 | Categorized as: Compliance

It's so important for employers to understand the requirements around annual notices and annual delivery of theirs SPDs and their SBCs. There is great potential for a penalty if an employee were to request that document and not receive it within 30 days; those penalties can be up to $100 per day per violation if the DOL were to start an audit and get involved. Not to mention, there may be additional penalties as well. The confusion lies with the delivery a lot of times of how to actually deliver these planned documents and these notices to their employees. There are a number of options for employers to take in order to deliver the notices and their plan documents annually. Listen below as our Director of Compliance, Tamalyn Wandler, JD explains the electronic and non-electronic options and their requirements. Want to learn more about electronic and non-electronic delivery methods?…

Supreme Court Blocks OSHA Vaccine-or-Test Mandate But Allows Vaccine Mandate for Healthcare Workers to Proceed

Posted On: January 14, 2022 | Categorized as: Compliance

Oral arguments on the OSHA vaccine-or-test mandate and vaccine mandate for healthcare workers were heard on January 7, 2022. As a result, the U.S. Supreme Court has issued two opinions with different outcomes on January 13th. Both opinions are discussed in greater detail below. OSHA Vaccine-or-Test Mandate In a 6-3 decision, the Court has blocked the OSHA vaccine-or-test mandate applicable to employers with 100 or more employees. This mandate, which became effective January 10, 2022, required employers with at least 100 employees to mandate COVID-19 vaccinations or implement a weekly testing protocol. A stay was issued on the mandate by the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals in November 2021 and then reinstated by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit in December 2021, but was immediately appealed. The Court’s opinion states in part that “although Congress has indisputably given OSHA the power to regulate occupational dangers, it has…

DOL Guidance On At-Home COVID-19 Tests

Posted On: January 12, 2022 | Categorized as: Compliance

The Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services (HHS), and the Treasury (collectively, the Departments) issued Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) Monday that generally require group health plans and insurers to cover the costs of at-home over-the-counter COVID-19 tests (OTC COVID-19 Tests) approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and purchased on or after January 15, 2022. Plans and insurers may, but are not required to, cover the cost for OTC COVID-19 Tests bought before January 15 (though some states have existing rules requiring these tests to be covered by carriers). The FAQs expand prior guidance that has only required plans and carriers to cover the costs of testing administered by a health care provider.Generally, the FAQs provide that covered individuals can go online or visit a pharmacy or store and buy approved OTC COVID-19 Tests. Each person covered under a plan may get up to eight OTC COVID-19…

December 2021 Compliance Recap

Posted On: January 11, 2022 | Categorized as: Compliance

December was a quiet month in the compliance world in terms of large announcements, but lots of little information trickled in over the month. OSHA’s vaccine-or-test mandate for large employers and vaccine mandate for health care organizations is headed for the Supreme Court, set to be heard on January 7, 2022. While we wait for that decision to be handed down, here is a recap of what happened in December. HHS Notice of Benefit and Payment Parameters for 2023 Proposed Rule The Department of Health and Human Services and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) posted its proposed benefit and payment parameters for 2023. The proposed rule addresses a good number of issues, including proposed requirements related to prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity, guaranteed availability, federal marketplace enrollment assistance for consumers, essential health benefits non-discrimination policy refinement, and actuarial value issues. Review the HHS…

Vaccine Mandate for Healthcare Workers Reinstated as U.S. Supreme Court Prepares to Hear Oral Arguments on Vaccine Mandates

Posted On: January 6, 2022 | Categorized as: Compliance

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued an emergency ruling in November 2021, which would require eligible staff at health care facilities participating in Medicare and Medicaid programs to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. The mandate was quickly challenged in several states, resulting in a nationwide stay on enforcement. Despite pending litigation, on December 28, 2021, CMS announced their decision to once again enforce the COVID-19 vaccine mandate for covered entities in the 25 states (listed below), the District of Columbia, and the territories not currently impacted by the stay. As a result of CMS’s decision, the mandate now has an updated timeline for covered entities to implement a vaccine policy. Facilities now have until January 27, 2022 to ensure compliance with Phase 1 of the mandate, which includes requirements for the establishment of policies and procedures and at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine for eligible…

Sixth Circuit Lifts Stay on OSHA COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate for Employers with 100+ Employees

Posted On: December 21, 2021 | Categorized as: Compliance

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit has issued an opinion lifting the stay on the vaccine-or-test mandate for employers with 100 or more employees. The stay was imposed by the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals in November as a result of the Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) released by OSHA which would require employers with at least 100 employees to mandate COVID-19 vaccination or implement a weekly testing protocol. The ETS faced numerous legal challenges shortly after implementation resulting in multi-circuit petitions for review, eventually being brought before the three-judge panel that issued the opinion.The ETS originally imposed a deadline of January 4, 2022, for employers to be in compliance, but in light of the short turnaround time for employers, these deadlines have been adjusted. As a result of the court’s opinion, the Department of Labor (DOL) released a statement on December 18, 2021, stating it will not…

End of Year Employee Benefits Compliance Checklist

Posted On: December 10, 2021 | Categorized as: Compliance, Employee Benefits

From ACA reporting to new federal regulations, employers are faced with several obligations as they close out the year and begin to plan for 2022. To help comply with your obligations, we have complied a list of important items that apply to employer-sponsored group health plans to either review and/or take action.Prepare and Submit Affordable Care Act (ACA) Mandatory ReportingThe IRS has issued proposed regulations, which if finalized, would extend the annual furnishing deadlines for Internal Revenue Code (IRC) Sections 6055 and 6056 reporting under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) permanently. IRC Sections 6055 and 6056 outline reporting requirements for employers and providers to confirm whether individuals have acquired minimum essential coverage during the applicable plan year. Under IRC Section 6055, Forms 1094-B and 1095-B must be completed by providers of minimum essential coverage for all covered individuals. Applicable Large Employers can satisfy the reporting requirements under both Section 6055…

November 2021 Compliance Recap

Posted On: December 7, 2021 | Categorized as: Compliance

November saw quite a bit of activity in the compliance space. Although OSHA’s vaccine-or-test mandate for private employers was issued, it was immediately met with resistance in the form of lawsuits and a stay from the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals. The mandates for federal contractors and health care workers are also facing court challenges in several states. For now, it’s a waiting game to see how the mandates play out in the court system. While we wait for more news to come, here are the highlights of what happened in November. Federal Marketplace Open Enrollment Started November 1 The federal health insurance marketplace began open enrollment for 2022 plan coverage on November 1, 2021. In an effort to boost access to affordable coverage, the marketplace open enrollment period is extended to January 15, 2022. This gives consumers an additional 30 days to review and choose a plan – historically,…

COVID-19 High Deductible Health Plan and IRC Section 125 Changes Expiring in 2022

Posted On: November 29, 2021 | Categorized as: Compliance

Provisions in the CARES Act allowed HSA-qualified High Deductible Health Plan (HDHP) participants to receive telemedicine care on a first-dollar basis for plan years beginning on or before December 31, 2021. Additionally, the IRS issued guidance allowing HDHPs to cover the testing and treatment of COVID-19 prior to a participant meeting their deductible under the plan. This guidance is effective through the end of the declared COVID-19 public health emergency; however, the CARES Act rule suspending deductible requirements for telehealth visits will expire on December 31, 2021. With that said, there have been several bipartisan bills introduced in Congress aiming to expand or permanently waive the deductible for telehealth services. As these bills are still in the early stages, employers should be prepared to comply and make the necessary changes ahead of December 31st. Congress enacted temporary rules for health flexible spending accounts (FSAs) and dependent care assistance programs (DCAP)…

IRS Proposes Permanent Extension for Distributing ACA Reports

Posted On: November 29, 2021 | Categorized as: Compliance

The IRS has issued proposed regulations, which if finalized, would extend the annual furnishing deadlines for Internal Revenue Code (IRC) Sections 6055 and 6056 reporting under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) permanently. IRC Sections 6055 and 6056 outline reporting requirements for employers and providers to confirm whether individuals have acquired minimum essential coverage during the applicable plan year.  Under IRC Section 6055, Forms 1094-B and 1095-B must be completed by providers of minimum essential coverage for all covered individuals. Applicable Large Employers can satisfy the reporting requirements under both Section 6055 and 6056 by filing Forms 1094-C and 1095-C. Filers must also furnish a 1095-B to each Responsible Individual or 1095-C statement to each full-time employee. Since 2015, the IRS has provided an extension to the due date for furnishment of Forms 1095-B and 1095-C to individuals. Under the proposed regulations, a 30-day extension will be automatic for employers, health…

OSHA Suspends Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) Vaccine Mandate

Posted On: November 18, 2021 | Categorized as: Compliance

On November 17, 2021, OSHA suspended the execution and enforcement of its Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) mandating employers with 100 or more employees to implement mandatory COVID-19 vaccination and testing policies. This suspension came after the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals granted a motion to stay the mandate until further court order is issued. As of this time, 11 out of the 12 U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeal have filed suit against the mandate stating it is unconstitutional and beyond OSHA’s purview of authority to implement such a requirement. On November 16, 2021, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals was selected to hear the case and make the decision as to the constitutionality of the mandate. This decision will likely be decided in the coming weeks. Following the Sixth Circuit’s decision it is anticipated that the party in which the decision does not favor will appeal, bringing the case before…

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