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Employee Benefits

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In 2016, compliance related to health care continued to affect employer plans, creating many changes, challenges and additional responsibilities. This review looks back at the regulations and other guidance issued by agencies in 2016 and serves as a guide to help employers remain compliant with the Affordable Care Act (ACA), HIPAA, wellness rules and other general benefits compliance requirements.

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GENERAL BENEFITS COMPLIANCE

 

The following links offer articles related to general employee benefits compliance. The past year provided guidance in areas such as DOL increase in penalties, nondiscrimination in health programs and various other topics.

 

 
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ACA REPORTING AND FEES

 

The ACA created many different reporting responsibilities for employers. This section provides updates to keep employers informed on several of these requirements, including Forms 1094 and 1095 that employers will use to report under Sections 6055 and 6056.




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EMPLOYER SHARED RESPONSIBILITY, OR

“PAY OR PLAY”

 

Beginning in 2014, employers with 100 or more full-time equivalent employees (FTEs) determined how they would respond to the Employer Shared Responsibility provision, specifically whether they would “pay” or “play.” Large employers that have fewer than 100 full-time equivalent employees had until 2016 to comply. Below are articles to help employers fully understand the changes and continued responsibilities associated with the “pay or play” mandate.



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WELLNESS PLAN COMPLIANCE

 

Many employers have implemented wellness programs to help gain some control over the rising cost of health care. Due to the nature of wellness programs, the agencies continue to pass legislative requirements as stated below.



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HIPAA

 

The agencies provided more HIPAA guidance in 2016, specifically the HIPAA Audit Program launched by the HHS. The following articles provide details about this program.



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HRAs, FSAs & HSAs

 

The number of employers offering HRAs, FSAs and HSAs continues to increase. The following articles provide guidance for employers currently offering these types of benefits as well as for employers who are considering offering them.



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