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President Trump Issues Executive Orders Intending to Lower the Cost of Prescription Drugs

President Trump Issues Executive Orders Intending to Lower the Cost of Prescription Drugs On July 24, 2020, President Trump issued several Executive Orders intending to lower prescription drug costs by (1) modifying anti-kickback laws to lower drug prices, (2) reducing trade barriers to increase importation of drugs and lower prices, and (3) improving access to …

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IRS Issues Affordability Percentage Adjustment for 2021

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has released Rev. Proc. 2020-36, which contains the inflation adjusted amounts for 2021 used to determine whether employer-sponsored coverage is “affordable” for purposes of the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) employer shared responsibility provisions and premium tax credit program. As shown in the table below, for plan years beginning in 2021, …

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U.S. Supreme Court Upholds Final Rules Allowing Employer-Sponsored Health Plans to Decline to Cover Contraceptives Due to Moral or Religious Objections

U.S. Supreme Court Upholds Final Rules Allowing Employer-Sponsored Health Plans to Decline to Cover Contraceptives Due to Moral or Religious Objections On July 8, 2020, the United States Supreme Court upheld the Final Rules issued by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) that exempt all employers with a religious objection to contraception, and …

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As HHS Finalizes Its Updated §1557 Rules, the United States Supreme Court Rules Title VII Protects Individuals From Discrimination Due To Sexual Orientation or Gender Identity

On June 12, 2020, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (“HHS”) released its Final Rule under Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act which, among other things, modifies the regulation issued by HHS in May 2016 (“2016 Rules”).  The 2016 Rules were subject to multiple lawsuits over the years and HHS claims the …

Read moreAs HHS Finalizes Its Updated §1557 Rules, the United States Supreme Court Rules Title VII Protects Individuals From Discrimination Due To Sexual Orientation or Gender Identity

Legal Alert: IRS Releases Updated Form 720 Used For PCORI Fee Payments

As we recently reported, on June 8, 2020, the IRS released the applicable PCORI fee for plan years ending between October 1, 2019 and September 30, 2020.  As we indicated in that alert, an updated Form 720 had not yet been released and, therefore, employers were advised to wait to file their PCORI fees until …

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Alera Group Releases Results of COVID-19 Employer Pulse Survey: Phase 2

One-Third of All Employers Furloughed Employees Yet Nearly 85% Plan to Bring Back Workers Alera Group, a national employee benefits, property and casualty, retirement services and wealth management firm, today released the results of the Alera Group COVID-19 Employer Pulse Survey: Phase 2. The survey identified several key findings: Pandemic Response: More companies have implemented …

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REMINDER: PCORI Fees Due By July 31, 2020

Employers that sponsor self-insured group health plans, including health reimbursement arrangements (HRAs) should keep in mind the upcoming July 31, 2020 deadline for paying fees that fund the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI).  As background, the PCORI was established as part of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) to conduct research to evaluate the effectiveness of …

Read moreREMINDER: PCORI Fees Due By July 31, 2020

REMINDER: PCORI Fees Due By July 31, 2020

Employers that sponsor self-insured group health plans, including health reimbursement arrangements (HRAs) should keep in mind the upcoming July 31, 2020 deadline for paying fees that fund the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI).  As background, the PCORI was established as part of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) to conduct research to evaluate the effectiveness of …

Read moreREMINDER: PCORI Fees Due By July 31, 2020

IRS Releases 2021 HSA Contribution Limits and HDHP Deductible and Out-of-Pocket Limits

In Rev. Proc. 2020-32, the IRS released the inflation adjusted amounts for 2020 relevant to HSAs and high deductible health plans (HDHPs).  The table below summarizes those adjustments and other applicable limits.   2021 2020 Change Annual HSA Contribution Limit (employer and employee) Self-only: $3,600 Family: $7,200 Self-only: $3,550 Family: $7,100 Self-only: +$50 Family: +$100 …

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Carrier Premium Credits and ERISA Fiduciary Obligations

Due to COVID-19 and state and local stay-at-home orders, utilization of group medical and dental insurance benefits is down.  As a result, some carriers recently notified employers that they will be issued premium credits. When asking how these premium credits should be treated by the employer, we often compare then to the ACA’s medical loss …

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