A federal court ruling staying key parts of new Affordable Care Act (ACA) regulations in light of the landmark Supreme Court of the United States ruling on sexual orientation and gender identity will provide little certainty to employers about how federal discrimination law applies to their health plans.
Articles Discussing Health Care Reform.
A New York court has restored anti-discrimination protections for transgender patients under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Walker et al. v. Azar et al., No. 20-cv-2834 (E.D.N.Y. Aug. 17, 2020).
Section 1557 of the ACA extends Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972’s prohibition against “sex discrimination” to covered
IRS Notice 2020-44 was issued this week as a reminder that Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) fees were extended under the Further Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2020 and are now not scheduled to expire until plan years ending after September 30, 2029. Annual PCORI fees will still need to be
Over the past year, there has been a significant focus in the press on various attempts to overhaul or repeal key elements of the Affordable Care Act (“ACA”), which was originally passed into law almost eight years ago. While there […]
Healthcare consumers continue to pay more and more toward their out-of-pocket healthcare costs, driving a shift away from volume-based compensation models toward outcomes-based payment arrangements. By all accounts, meaningful consumerism in the healthcare market is rapidly emerging.
Employers who provide health benefits to their union workforce through a multiemployer group health plan must satisfy all the Affordable Care Act (ACA) reporting requirements regarding their union employees.
On May 24, 2019, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued new proposed regulations interpreting Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), which contains the ACA’s anti-discrimination provisions.1 These proposed regulations substantially change Obama-era HHS regulations interpreting Section 1557 to prohibit discrimination in certain health programs based on gender identity, gender expression, and transgender status. (Littler’s previous coverage of Section 1557 is available here.)
As employers and their third-party administrators begin to wrap-up their Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (“ACA”) reporting for the 2018 tax year, we’ve started to receive questions about what comes next. As we discussed here, with the implementation of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 (the “Act”), the ACA’s “individual mandate” effectively lost its teeth—while the ACA still contains a requirement that individuals obtain health insurance coverage, the Act reduced the penalty for not doing so to $0.
On December 14, 2018, a Texas federal court declared the entire Affordable Care Act (ACA) unconstitutional. Despite this broad holding (and clickbait headlines), employers should not expect to see any significant changes to the ACA in the near future.
On December 14, 2018, a federal district judge sitting in Texas ruled that, without the so-called “individual mandate” which requires individual taxpayers to maintain minimum essential coverage, the rest of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act as amended (widely known as the “ACA”) is “INVALID”.
This is the seventh article in our series covering various tax and employee benefits-related changes contained in the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act signed by the President on December 22, 2017.
The IRS has recently begun enforcing the “employer shared responsibility” (ESR) provisions of the Affordable Care Act (the “Act”), which require employers having 50 or more full-time employees (or full-time equivalent employees) to offer health insurance coverage to eligible employees and their dependents. Failure to offer qualifying coverage as required by the Act results in the employer being subject to a penalty, known as the “employer shared responsibility payment” (ESRP), which can be substantial. Notices of ESRPs for 2015 coverage – the first year for which the ESR requirements were effective – are being received by some employers now. The notices are not actual assessments, but the penalty will be assessed if appropriate action is not taken promptly.
On more than one occasion since passing the Affordable Care Act (“ACA”), the IRS has given some type of early holiday “gift” to alleviate pending compliance concerns for employers. One of the most significant of these occurred in late December 2015, when the IRS extended the mandated filing periods for Forms 1094/1095, which gave employers more time to comply with the ACA’s new reporting obligations. Employers were still coming to grips with reporting health insurance coverages offered during the 2015 taxable year and the litany of new codes used to determine if the employer had adequately complied with Code Section 4980H’s employer shared responsibility requirements. At that same time, the IRS also communicated that employers would not be penalized for filing incorrect or incomplete Forms 1094/1095 if the forms were actually filed by the extended deadlines and filers could show they “made good faith efforts to comply with the information reporting requirements for 2015.”
Under the ACA, employers must provide plans that cover birth control and other preventative health services with no out-of-pocket costs. Certain religious employers with religious objections to providing contraceptive services have been exempt from the requirement. (Accommodations have also been provided to non-profit religious organizations objecting to the rule and expanded to closely held for-profit entities objecting to the mandate on religious grounds, see http://www.benefitslawadvisor.com/2014/07/articles/employee-health-welfare-plans/1007/).
Premiums for Affordable Care Act (ACA) marketplace coverage continue to sky rocket, with the average cost of a benchmark plan in the individual market place rising 20% this year. There is very different news for employer-sponsored plans. According to the nonprofit Kaiser Family Foundation, in 2016 annual family premiums rose on average a modest 3% to $18,142 per year, of which workers paid on average $5,277, just barely outpacing the average increase in workers’ wages (2.5%) and inflation (1.1%).