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March, 2014

Affordable Care Act Countdown: New Guidance for Individual Health Insurance

Those without individual health insurance only have 18 days (untill March 31, 2014) to purchase coverage. Only qualifying events will allow individuals to purchase insurance after the March 31st deadline. Read More

February, 2014

Health Care Reform: Final Employer Shared Responsibility Regulations Issued

Applicable large employers that have fewer than 100 fulltime employees will have an additional year, until 2016, to comply with the pay or play rules. The Affordable Care Act (ACA) imposes a penalty on large employers that do not offer minimum essential coverage to fulltime employees and their dependents. Large employers that offer this coverage may still be liable for a penalty if thecoverage is unaffordable or does not provideminimum value. The ACA’s employer mandate provision is often referred to asthe “employer shared responsibility” or “payor play” rules. On Feb. 10, 2014, the U.S. Treasury Department released final regulations implementing the employer sharedresponsibility provisions of the ACA. Read More

January, 2014

Health Care Reform: Affordable Care Act Implementation FAQs

On January 9, 2014, the Departments of Health and Human Services (HHS), Labor and Treasury issued FAQs to clarify Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) provisions related to several topics including: Preventive Services, Cost-sharing Requirements, Expatriate Health Plans,  Wellness Programs, Fixed Indemnity Insurance and  Mental Health Parity 

We have summarized the information in the FAQs and provided a link to the complete FAQs. Read More

December, 2013

Health Care Reform: Paying Premiums for Individual Health Insurance Policies

Starting in 2014, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) may make purchasing health insurance in the individual market more accessible for individuals. Due to the ACA’s reforms and the rising costs of health coverage, some employers have considered whether they should help employees pay for individual health insurance policies instead of offering an employer-sponsored group health plan.

On Sept. 13, 2013, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued Notice 2013-54 (Notice) to address how certain ACA reforms apply to health reimbursement arrangements (HRAs), cafeteria plans and other employer payment plans. The Notice is effective for plan years beginning on or after Jan. 1, 2014.The Notice discourages employers from helping employees pay for individual policies in lieu of offering a group health plan by eliminating the tax savings associated with contributions toward individual coverage  Read More

November, 2013

Health Care Reform: White House Announces Transition Policy For Canceled Health Plans

Responding to pressure from consumers andCongress, on Nov. 14, 2013, President Obamaannounced a new transition policy for 2014. Under the new policy, individuals andsmall businesses whose coverage has beencanceled (or would be canceled) because itdoes not meet the ACA’s standards may beable to re-enroll or stay on their coverage foran additional year. Read More

October, 2013

Health Care Reform: Changed to the Use-or-Lose Rule for Health FSAs

On Oct. 31, 2013, the Internal RevenueService (IRS) released Notice 2013-71(Notice), which relaxes the “use-or-lose”rule for health FSAs. Under the relaxedrule, employers will now be able to allowparticipants to carry over up to $500 inunused funds into the next year. This modification applies only if the plandoes not also incorporate the graceperiod rule. Read More

September, 2013

Exchange Notice Requirement: FAQs on Implementation

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) requires all employers subject to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) to provide notices to current employees and new hires about the forthcoming health insurance exchanges and subsidies that may be available through the exchanges for qualified individuals. In January of 2013, the federal Department of Labor (DOL) issued guidance delaying the notice requirement under Section 1512 of the law to better coordinate it with the open enrollment period for the new health insurance exchange marketplaces. In May of 2013, further guidance was issued indicating that employers are to provide these notices to employees by October 1, 2013. This frequently asked question (FAQ) document is intended to assist you with the implementation the notice requirement.  Read More

July, 2013

Health Care Reform: Employer Mandate Penalties Delayed Until 2015

The Obama Administration has postponed the Affordable Care Act (ACA) employer mandate penalties for one year, until 2015. The Department of the Treasury announced the delay on July 2, 2013, along with a similar delay for information reporting by employers, health insurance issuers and self-funded plan sponsors. The delay does not affect any other provision of the ACA, including individuals’ access to premium tax credits forcoverage through an Exchange. The Treasury plans to issue more formal information about the delay within a week. Read More

June, 2013

Health Care Reform: Health Insurance Exchanges - Employer Coverage Tool

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) calls for the creation of state-based competitive marketplaces, known as Affordable Health Insurance Exchanges (Exchanges), for individuals and small businesses to purchase private health insurance. ACA requires the Exchanges to become operational in 2014. According to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the Exchanges will allow for direct comparisons of private health insurance options based on price, quality and other factors, and will coordinate eligibility for premium tax credits and other affordability programs. Read More

May, 2013

Health Care Reform: Proposed Rule Released on Minimum Value and Affordability 

On May 3, 2013, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) released a proposed rule on the minimum value and affordability rules under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). In this proposed rule, the IRS provides guidance on determining whether health coverage under an employer-sponsored plan is affordable and provides minimum value for purposes of determining the employer “pay or play” penalties. In particular, the proposed regulation: Read More

 

DOL Issues Model Exchange Notice and Sets Compliance Deadline

On May 8, 2013, the Department of Labor (DOL) released Technical Release 2013-02 to provide temporary guidance on the Exchange notice requirement. This temporary guidance will remain in effect until the DOL issues regulations or other guidance. According to the DOL, future regulations or other guidance will provide employers with adequate time to comply with any additional or modified requirements.   Read More

 

April, 2013

Health Care Reform: Proposed Rule On Exchange Navigator Programs

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) calls for the creation of state-based competitive marketplaces, known as Affordable Health Insurance Exchanges (Exchanges), for individuals and small businesses to purchase private health insurance. The ACA requires the Exchanges to become operational in 2014, with enrollment beginning Oct. 1, 2013.To help consumers use the Exchanges and review insurance options, the ACA requires each Exchange to establish a Navigator program.  Read More

March, 2013

Health Care Reform: Proposed guidance issued on 90 day waiting period

For plan years beginning on or after Jan. 1, 2014, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) prohibits group health plans and group health insurance issuers from applying any waiting period that exceeds 90 days. ACA’s 90-day waiting period limit applies to both non-grandfathered and grandfathered group health plans and health insurance coverage. Read More

February, 2013

Health Care Reform: Pay or Play Penalty Identifying Full Time Employees

Effective Jan. 1, 2014, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) imposes a penalty on large employers that do not offer minimum essential coverage to “substantially all” full-time employees and dependents. Large employers that do offer coverage may still be liable for a penalty if the coverage is unaffordable or does not provide minimum value. Read More

January, 2013

Health Care Reform: Exchange Notice Requirements Delayed

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) requires employers to provide all new hires and current employees with a written notice about ACA’s health insurance exchanges (Exchanges), effective March 1, 2013.

On Jan. 24, 2013, the Department of Labor (DOL) announced that employers will not be held to the
March 1, 2013, deadline. They will not have to comply until final regulations are issued and a final
effective date is specified. Read More

Health Care Reform: Employer Penalties - Affordability Safe Harbors

Beginning in 2014, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) imposes “pay or play” requirements on large employers. Under these “pay or play” requirements, large employers that do not offer health coverage to their full-time employees and their dependents, or that offer coverage that is either unaffordable or does not provide minimum value, may be subject to a penalty. This penalty is also referred to as a “shared responsibility payment.”

On Jan. 2, 2013, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) published proposed regulations that provide further guidance on whether coverage will be considered affordable. The IRS previously announced the Form W-2 safe harbor, which allows employers to assess affordability for each employee according to the employee’s Form W-2 wages only (rather than household income). The proposed regulations: Read More

December, 2012

Health Care Reform: FAQs on Exchanges, Market Reforms and Medicaid

The Affordable Care Act (ACA), which was enacted on March 23, 2010, includes significant changes related to health care coverage. Among other things, the ACA calls for the creation of state-based Affordable Health Insurance Exchanges (Exchanges) to facilitate the purchase of insurance, requires insurers to comply with a new set of market reforms and expands the Medicaid program.

On Dec. 10, 2012, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services(CMS) issued Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) to answer questions regarding the implementation of the Exchanges and the Medicaid expansion. Read More

Health Care Reform: Topic - Cost Sharing Limit

Cost-Sharing Limit - Under health care reform, annual cost-sharing limits apply to non-grandfathered group health plans beginning in 2014. The annual cost-sharing limits cannot exceed the maximum out-of-pocket expense limits for high deductible health plans (HDHPs) ($6,250 for self-only coverage and $12,500 for family coverage in 2013, which will be adjusted for cost of living in 2014, and adjusted by an index amount in years after 2014). These cost-sharing limits apply to insured and self-funded plans. In the case of a plan using a network of providers, it appears that cost-sharing paid for benefits provided outside of the network do not count toward the annual limitation. Read More

November, 2012

Health Care Reform: Obama Wins Re-election - Healthcare Reform Law Here to Stay

After hard-fought campaigns by both candidates, President Barack Obama has been re-elected for a second term in office. Obama’s victory in the election, along with last summer’s Supreme Court decision upholding the health care reform law, cements the Democratic Party’s dedication to the legislation.

While opponents of the law have called for its repeal, health care reform’s supporters consider the legislation to be the major achievement of Obama’s first term. Obama’s re-election, along with continued Democratic control of the Senate, means that implementation of the law will now continue without additional roadblocks. Read More

October, 2012

Health Care Reform: 2013 Compliance Checklist

In light of the Supreme Court’s June 28, 2012, decision to uphold the health care reform law, or Affordable Care Act(ACA), employers must continue to comply with ACA mandates that are currently in effect. Employers must also prepare to comply with ACA changes that will go into effect in the future. To prepare for upcoming changes, employers need to be aware of the ACA mandates that will go into effect in 2013. This GCG Financial, Inc. Legislative Brief provides a compliance checklist for employers for 2013. Read More

September, 2012

Health Care Reform: Pre-Existing Condition Exclusions

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) amended the rules regarding pre-existing condition exclusions in the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA). The HIPAA rules applied only to group health plans and group health insurance coverage, and permitted limited exclusions of coverage based on pre-existing conditions under certain circumstances. Read More

Health Care Reform: Patient Protections

Among other reforms, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) imposes three new requirements on group health plans and group or individual health insurance coverage that are referred to as “patient protections.” These patient protections relate to the choice of a health care professional and requirements relating to benefits for emergency services, and became effective for plan years beginning on or after Sept. 23, 2010. They do not apply to grandfathered plans. The rules regarding choice of health care professional apply only to plans that have a network of providers. Read More

Health Care Reform: Prohibitions on Rescissions

Effective for plan years beginning on or after Sept. 23, 2010, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) prohibits group health plans and health insurance issuers from rescinding coverage for covered individuals, except in the case of fraud or intentional misrepresentation of a material fact. Fraud may include an omission of relevant facts. This prohibition applies to grandfathered and non-grandfathered health plans, whether in the group or individual market, and whether coverage is insured or self-funded. Read More

August, 2012

Health Care Reform: Temporary Contraceptive Coverage Delay for Religious Employers

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) requires non-grandfathered group health plans and health insurance issuers to provide benefits for certain preventive health services without imposing cost-sharing requirements. These services include the preventive care and screenings for women described in guidelines issued by the Departments of Health and Human Services (HHS), Labor (DOL) and the Treasury (Departments) in August 2011. One of these guidelines requires nongrandfathered plans and issuers to cover all FDA-approved contraceptive methods for women without cost sharing. Read More

July, 2012

Health Care Reform: DOL Starts Auditing ACA Compliance

The Department of Labor (DOL) has broad authority under ERISA to investigate or audit an employee benefit plan’s compliance with various federal laws. In connection with an investigation or audit, the DOL generally requires the submission of records or documents related to an employee benefit plan. Typically, an employer first learns that its employee benefit plan has been selected for a DOL audit when it receives a letter from the DOL explaining the audit and requesting certain records or documents. Read More

June, 2012

Health Care Reform: Supreme Court Upholds Health Care Reform Law

On June 28, 2012, the last day of its current term, the U.S. Supreme Court announced its decision on the constitutionality of the health care reform law. The Court essentially upheld the entire law, holding that Congress acted within its constitutional authority when enacting the individual mandate. This means that the health care reform law will continue to be implemented as planned and provisions that are already effective will continue. Read More

May, 2012

Health Care Reform: Q&As on Medical Loss Ratio Rules

The Affordable Care Act’s medical loss ratio (MLR) rules mandate that health insurance issuers report how they spend their premium revenue to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). In addition, issuers that do not spend at least 80 percent (small group and individual markets) or 85 percent (large group market) of their premium revenue on reimbursement for clinical services and health care quality improvement must provide rebates Read More

April, 2012

Health Care Reform: Health Insurance Exchanges

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) calls for the creation of state-based competitive marketplaces, known as Affordable Health Insurance Exchanges (Exchanges), for individuals and small businesses to purchase private health insurance. According to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the Exchanges will allow for direct comparisons of private health insurance options on the basis of price, quality and other factors and will coordinate eligibility for premium tax credits and other affordability programs. ACA requires the Exchanges to become operational
in 2014. Read More

Health Care Reform: IRS Q&As on Form W-2 Reporting

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) added Internal Revenue Code (Code) section 6051(a)(14), which requires employers to report the aggregate cost of employer-sponsored group health plan coverage on their employees’ Forms W-2. This reporting requirement was originally effective for the 2011 tax year. However, the IRS later made reporting optional for 2011.

In April 2011, the IRS issued Notice 2011-28, which furthered delayed the Form W-2 reporting requirement for small employers and provided interim guidance on the reporting requirement. On Jan. 3, 2012, the IRS issued Notice 2012-9, which revised and clarified the IRS’s interim guidance on the Form W-2 reporting requirement. Read More

March, 2012

Health Care Reform: FAQs on Summary of Benefits and Coverage

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Affordable Care Act or ACA) requires health plans and health insurance issuers to provide a summary of benefits and coverage (SBC) to applicants and enrollees. The SBC is limited to four double-sided pages and provides straightforward and consistent information about health plan benefits and coverage. Its purpose is to help health plan consumers better understand the coverage they have and to help them make easy comparisons of different options when shopping for new coverage.

On Feb. 14, 2012, the Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services (HHS), and the Treasury (Departments) issued final regulations regarding the SBC. To answer additional questions regarding the SBC, the Departments have issued Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs). Read More

Health Care Reform: Insurance Market Nondiscrimination Reforms for 2014

Effective for 2014, the Affordable Care Act (or ACA) requires health plans and health insurance issuers to comply with a new set of market reforms related to nondiscrimination. These reforms include: Premium rating restrictions for health insurance issuers in the individual and small group markets; Additional limits regarding discrimination based on a health status-related factor; Prohibition on imposing preexisting condition exclusions; and Expanded guaranteed issue and renewability requirements. Read More

February, 2012

Health Care Reform: Final Guidance on Summary of Benefits and Coverage

On Feb. 9, 2012, the Departments of Health and Human Services, Labor and Treasury (Departments) released much-anticipated final guidance on the requirement for health plans and health insurance issuers to provide a summary of benefits and coverage to applicants and enrollees. Read More

 

Summer 2011

Workers’ Compensation and Health Care Reform

In the wake of sweeping changes in the U.S. health care system, employers are forced to evaluate the way reform will affect their bottom lines. One factor that was largely left out of the focus of health care reform - but is certainly linked to it - is workers’ compensation. The program represents less than 2 percent of U.S. medical spending, and thus was fundamentally ignored in the 2010 legislation that overhauled the nation’s health care system. Employers are left to wonder what change to expect in future workers’ compensation claims. Read more

Health Care Reform and Cobra

In 2010, health care reform became a reality with the passage of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010. The U.S. Department of Labor has issued Frequently Asked Questions on how the health care reform law affects COBRA and the COBRA premium subsidy. Read more


Health Care Reform: General Q&A for Employees

I've heard about a number of different health care proposals over the last year. Which one did Congress pass?  The health care reform law is a combination of two bills: Read more

 

Health Care Reform: Open Enrollment Compliance Checklist

Health care reform, in the form of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, brings many changes for employers and their health plans. As sponsors of group health plans prepare to comply with health care reform’s many requirements, they need to be aware of how health care reform will affect their plans for the coming plan year. Many changes are effective on the first day of the first plan year beginning on or after Sept. 23, 2010. Read more

 

Health Care Reform: Compare Your Health Care Options

The Affordable Care Act makes many changes to the health care system in an effort to control costs, but that is not its only objective. Health care reform legislation was also designed to improve quality of care for patients. Read more

April, 2011

Voucher Provision Cut from Health Care Reform Law

On April 15, 2011, after weeks of intense negotiations between Democrats and Republicans in Congress, President Obama signed a budget bill that would fund the federal government through the end of Sept. 2011 and avoid the threatened federal government shutdown. Read More.

Health Care Reform: HHS Issues CLASS Act FAQs

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act established a voluntary, consumer-funded long-term care insurance program known as the Community Living Assistance Services and Supports Program (CLASS Act or Program). The goal of the program is to provide additional options for people who are disabled and require assistance to continue living as independently as possible.Read more.

Health Care Reform: Grandfathered Plans Implementation FAQs


The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) was enacted on March 23, 2010. The health care reform legislation includes many changes related to health care coverage and raises a number of questions for employers. Read more.

Health Care Reform: Early Retiree Reinsurance Program to be Closed to New Applications

CMS Announces Deadline for ERRP Applications

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) established the Early Retiree Reinsurance Program (ERRP). The ERRP is a temporary program designed to provide reimbursement to eligible employers (and employment-based plans) for part of the cost of providing health care coverage to early retirees and their families. The ERRP has $5 billion in funding and is set to expire no later than Jan.1, 2014. Read more.

Health Care Reform: Potential Penalties for Employers Under the"Pay or Play" Rules

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, as amended by the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act(together, PPACA), brings many changes to employers and health plans. One such change essentially amounts to arequirement for some employers to offer health care coverage to employees.PPACA does not explicitly mandate an employer to offer employees acceptable health Read More.

Congress Repeals 1099 Reporting Requirements

On April 5, 2011, the Senate voted to repeal the Form 1099 tax reporting requirement that was included in last year's health care reform law. The Senate passed the Comprehensive 1099 Taxpayer Protection and Repayment of Exchange Subsidy Overpayments Act of 2011 (H.R. 4) by a vote of 87-12, showing overwhelming support for the repeal. The House of Representatives previously passed H.R. 4 on March 4, 2011, by a vote of 112-15. The repeal measure was supported by the White House and was signed by President Obama on April 14, 2011. Read More

March, 2011

Health Care Reform and COBRA-Questions and Answers (Q&A)

On The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) was enacted on March 23, 2010 and amended by the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010 on March 30, 2010. Continuation coverage under the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA) were minimally affected by the health care reform legislation. Read more.

January, 2011

Health Care Reform: IRS Q&As on OTC Drugs and Debit Cards

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) changed the rules for reimbursement of over-the-counter (OTC) medicines and drugs through plans such as health flexible spending arrangements (FSAs) and health reimbursement arrangements (HRAs). After December 31, 2010, OTC medicines and drugs (except insulin) may only be reimbursed with a prescription. Read More.

IRS Delays Nondiscrimination Rules for Fully Insured Health Plans

Nondiscrimination Rules Delayed

Under the health care reform law, non-grandfathered, fully insured group health plans were set to be subject to federal nondiscrimination rules for the first time. These rules, which have historically applied only to self-insured health plans, prohibit discrimination in favor of highly compensated individuals (HCIs). They are found in Section 105(h) of the Internal Revenue Code (the Code). Read More.

Health Care Reform: HHS Issues Medical Loss Ratio Rules

Executive Summary

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has issued an interim final rule on the medical loss ratio (MLR) requirements of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA). The interim final rule is effective January 1, 2011. Read More.

December, 2010

Health Care Reform: Annual Limit Waiver Model Notice Issued

Background

Under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), annual limits for health plans are being eliminated. Annual limits will be prohibited in 2014, but "restricted annual limits" are permitted for essential health benefits for plan years beginning before January 1, 2014. Plans that impose annual limits until 2014 must meet requirements for minimum limits. Read More. 

Health Care Reform: Annual Limit Waiver Application Instructions

Background

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) is phasing out annual limits for health plans. Annual limits will be prohibited in 2014, but "restricted annual limits" are permitted for essential health benefits for plan years beginning before January 1, 2014. Read More.

Health Care Reform: DOL Issues December 2010 FAQ Guidance

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) was enacted on March 23, 2010 and amended by the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010 on March 30, 2010. The health care reform legislation includes many changes related to health care coverage and raises a number of questions for employers. Read More.

November, 2010

Health Care Reform: Grandfathered Plans Can Change Insurance Carriers

New Rule for Grandfathered Plans


Under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), health plans that existed on March 23, 2010 are generally considered "grandfathered plans." Grandfathered plans are exempt from some of the health care reform requirements, including coverage of preventive care services with no cost-sharing and patient protections such as guaranteed access to OB-GYNs and pediatricians. More

Health Care Reform: DOL Issues Implementation FAQ Guidance

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) was enacted on March 23, 2010 and amended by the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010 on March 30, 2010. The health care reform legislation includes many changes related to health care coverage and raises a number of questions for employers. More

Health Care Reform: Federal External Review and Model Appeals Notices

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) requires non-grandfathered group health plans and health insurance coverage to adopt an improved internal claims and appeal process and to follow minimum requirements for external review. On August 23, 2010, interim procedures for external review of claim appeals were issued by the Departments of Treasury, Labor and Health and Human Services. The Departments also announced the availability of model notices related to internal claims and appeals and external review. More

Clarification on grandfathering for off-cycle renewals     

Plans are required to implement changes required by health care reform starting with their first renewal on or after September 23, 2010. If a group makes off-cycle plan changes before its first renewal after September 23, 2010, grandfathered status will not be affected until the next renewal date. The only exception would be if the plan change resulted in a new contract. For example, if a group moved from an HMO legal entity to a PPO legal entity, this would cause its grandfathered status to be lost immediately. 

Clarification on tax treatment of adult dependent coverage    

To align with the health care reform law, the IRS has clarified that health care coverage for employees' young adult dependents is not taxable. However, the rules have not changed for health savings account (HSA) expenses. That means employees can use HSA funds tax-free only for eligible expenses of family members who meet the IRS's definition of a "tax dependent."

August, 2010

Health Care Reform: CLASS Act Long-Term Care Benefits

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act establishes a voluntary, consumer-funded long-term care insurance program known as the Community Living Assistance Services and Supports Program (CLASS program). This Legislative Brief highlights key points of the CLASS program. Read More

Health Care Reform: Interim Final Rules on New Appeals Process

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act requires non-grandfathered group health plans to adopt an improved internal claims and appeal process and follow minimum requirements for external review, effective for plan years beginning on or after September 23, 2010. This Legislative Brief summarizes regulations that were issued on July 23, 2010, implementing these requirements. Read More

July, 2010

Health Care Reform: New Form W-2 Reporting Requirements

Beginning with the 2011 tax year, the health care reform law requires employers to report the cost of employer-sponsored health coverage on employees' Forms W-2. This Legislative Brief explains the new disclosure requirement. Read More

Health Care Reform: Interim Final Rules on a Patients' Bill of Rights

This Legislative Brief describes the interim final regulations regarding prohibitions of preexisting condition exclusions, lifetime and annual limits, rescissions and other patient protections under health care reform. Most of these provisions are effective for plan years beginning on or after September 23, 2010. Read More

Health Care Reform: Transition Relief Available For Grandfathered Plans

The health care reform regulations regarding grandfathered health plans include transition relief with respect to changes made before the regulations were issued. This Legislative Brief details the relief available. Read More

Health Care Reform Applications for Early Retiree Reinsurance Program Now Being Accepted

The Early Retiree Reinsurance Program was implemented as part of the health care reform law. The program officially began accepting applications on June 29, 2010. This Legislative Brief provides resources for applying to the program. Read More

Health Care Reform: Grandfathered Plans

This Legislative Brief provides information regarding grandfathered plans and the health care reform provisions from which they are exempt.It includes the regulations issued on June 14, 2010, and the special rule for collectively-bargained plans. Read More

Health Care Reform: Early Retiree Reinsurance Program Frequently Asked Questions

The Early Retiree Reinsurance Program was established by the health care reform law to provide reimbursement to participating employer-based plans that provide coverage to early retirees. HHS has issued these FAQs to assist employers in applying for the program. Read More

Health Care Reform: Potential Penalties For Employers Under the "Pay or Play" Rules

Beginning in 2014, some employers will be subject to penalties if they do not provide health coverage to employees, or if the coverage they provide is not affordable or does not provide minimum value. This Legislative Brief describes the potential penalties and when they can be assessed. Read More

Health Care Reform: Preventive Care Coverage Guidelines Issued

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act requires new health plans to cover preventive health services without imposing cost-sharing requirements. This Legislative Brief summarizes the interim final rules issued on this topic on July 14, 2010. Read More

Health Care Reform: Regulations Issued on Grandfathered Plans

On June 14, 2010, the Departments of Health and Human Services (HHS), Labor and Treasury issued regulations regarding grandfathered plans. This Legislative Brief offers an overview, including updated information on transition relief provided under the regulations. Read More

June, 2010

Health Care Reform: General Questions & Answers for Employers

This Legislative Brief provides answers to common questions from employers about the newest health care laws and how they affect a business. Read More

Health Care Reform: Q&A Regarding Coverage for Adult Children up to Age 26

This Legislative Brief provides answers to common questions about health care coverage for dependents up to age 26. Read More

Small Businesses Eligible for Health Care Tax Credit

This Legislative Brief gives an overview of the tax credit available under the health care reform law to small businesses that provide health insurance coverage. For more information see the Legislative Brief "Small Business Health Care Tax Credit: Questions and Answers." Updated to include links to tax credit calculators. Read More

Health Care Reform: General Questions & Answers for Employees

This Legislative Brief provides employees answers about changes to their plans due to health care reform. Read More

Health Care Reform: Questions & Answers Regarding Coverage for Seniors

This Legislative Brief answers four common questions seniors have about their health care coverage after its reform. Read More 

May, 2010

Health Care Reform: Extension of Dependent Coverage

Under the recently enacted health care reform law, group health plans and health insurance issuers offering health insurance coverage that provides dependent coverage of children must now make coverage available for adult children up to age 26. This Legislative Brief gives an overview of the new mandate. Read More

Health Care Reform Break Time for Nursing Mothers

Under the recently enacted health care reform law, employers are required to provide rest breaks and accommodations to employees who are nursing mothers to express breast milk. This Legislative Brief gives an overview of the new mandate. Read More

Health Care Reform: Changes to Health Accounts

Health care reform means changes for accounts such as health FSAs and HSAs. This Legislative Brief discusses some of the law's major provisions and their effective dates. Read More

Health Care Reform: Implications on Wellness Programs

Under the recently passed health care reform legislation, employers can offer increased incentives to employees for participating in a workplace wellness program or meeting certain health status targets starting in 2014. Read More

Health Care Reform: Interim Final Rule on Retiree Reinsurance Program

HHS has issued an interim final rule implementing the Early Retiree Reinsurance Program established by the health care reform legislation. This Legislative Brief explains the HHS guidance for plan sponsors. Read More

Health Care Reform: Interim Final Rules on Dependent Coverage of Children Up to Age 26

The health care reform law requires certain health plans and issuers to offer dependent coverage to children until age 26. This Legislative Brief describes the interim final rules relating to this requirement, which were published on May 13, 2010. Read More

Health Care Reform: IRS Guidance on the Small Employer Health Care Tax Credit

The health care reform law provides a tax credit to certain small employers that provide health care coverage to their employees. This Legislative Brief provides a detailed summary of IRS Notice 2010-44, which was issued on May 17, 2010. Updated to include links to tax credit calculators. Read More

Health Care Reform: Reinsurance for Early Retirees

The health care reform law includes a reinsurance program for early retirees that will be available to businesses by June 23, 2010. This Legislative Brief provides helpful information about the upcoming reinsurance program and how business can apply. Read More

Health Care Reform: Upcoming HR Implications

The landmark health care reform bills that were passed this year will undoubtedly affect how businesses provide and administer health care benefits to their employees. Read More

Health Care Reform: Upcoming Plan Design Issues

Employers need to be aware of plan design changes required by the new health care reform law. This Legislative Brief reviews the changes effective in the next year. Read More

Do you have a Healthcare Reform Question?

Health Care Reform: IRS Q&As on Form W-2 Reporting

Executive Summary

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) added Internal Revenue Code (Code) section 6051(a)(14),which requires employers to report the aggregate cost of employer-sponsored group health plan coverage on theiremployees' Forms W-2. This requirement was originally effective for the 2011 tax year and the W-2 Forms thatwould be provided in January 2012. However, the IRS later made reporting optional for 2011. Read more.


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The information on our website is only a summary of the law. It is intended for general information purposes only and is not legal advice. We do not guarantee or warrant accuracy of the content above as it does not contain complete statements of the law. Always contact an attorney to get complete, accurate and up-to-date legal advice.