Author Archives: Carrie Herrick

This Time With Feeling – Employer Paid Individual Policies Violate ACA

Employer payment plans, which include arrangements where an employer pays, or reimburses an employee, for some or all of the premium expenses incurred for an individual health insurance policy, violate market reforms under the Affordable Care Act (“ACA”). Notice 2015-17 […]

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The Yard-Man Inference is No Longer an Inference

The death knell for the so-called “Yard-Man Inference” has sounded. If you think we’re being a little dramatic – OK, maybe you’re right – we have a tendency to get a little too worked up about employee benefits cases that make […]

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Being Proactive v. Reactive – ACA’s Prohibition on Discrimination in Group Health Insurance

Back in 2010, the ACA enacted a new rule prohibiting insured group health plans from “discriminating” (on the basis of eligibility or provision of benefits) in favor of highly compensated individuals (called “HCIs”). This rule generally became effective January 1, […]

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Reimbursing Employees for Individual Health Insurance Policies Subjects Employers to Hefty Excise Taxes

What, you may ask? That’s right. It no longer works to reimburse employees for the purchase of an individual health insurance policy. I know, many of you have always done this. Well, not any longer under guidance issued under the […]

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IRS and DOL Encourage DC Plan Participants to Hedge Bets Against Outliving Retirement Savings

On October 24th, the Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) and the Department of Labor (“DOL”) offered guidance on the use of a series of target date funds (“TDFs”) in defined contribution plans that would include investment in deferred annuities in the […]

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EEOC Continues its Rampage Against Wellness

This week, the EEOC filed its third, and perhaps most significant, complaint in a wellness-related case.  The complaint alleges that the wellness program, which involved biometric screening and a surcharge for tobacco users, violates the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) […]

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Check it Out and Check it Off: 2015 Group Health Plan Checklist

With 2015 just around the corner, certain mandates under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, as amended (“ACA”) are about to become effective. Health plans also have several existing enrollment and annual notice requirements. Below is a checklist of […]

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Dealing with Changes to an Employee’s Measurement Period

Recently the IRS issued Notice 2014-49, offering guidance for situations in which the measurement period or method applicable to an employee changes. Background Under the Affordable Care Act, as amended (“ACA”) an applicable large employer risks the imposition of a […]

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Smoothing Pensions to Smooth Highways

Last Friday, the President signed the highway trust funding bill.  One part of the debate over the bill was how it would be funded.  Ultimately, the bill was paid for using  so-called “pension smoothing” that some decried as a “gimmick.” […]

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Kind of Halbig Deal

You may have heard about the potentially crippling blow to ACA (as some have described) dealt by a three-judge panel of the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals today in Halbig v. Burwell.  Basically, a group of individuals and employers challenged […]

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