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Displaying items by tag: benefits consulting

Tuesday, 15 December 2020 16:41

The COVID-19 Vaccine Has Come to Town

As the first doses of the COVID vaccine are arriving in Colorado and across the country, questions are being raised by employers about their health plans and office safety procedures. Our partners at Alera Group have issued guidance on what employers should be doing now to prepare themselves and their employees for the vaccine rollout. Read the recommendations here regarding medical policy cost restrictions and vaccine requirements.

Published in Wellness
Tuesday, 08 December 2020 16:41

2020 ACA Reporting: What Employers Need to Know

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) reporting for employers can be confusing, burdensome, and time-consuming. Most of the reporting requirements have not changed, but every year we see employers rushing to complete the requirements before the deadline. One of our partners, Benefit Advisors Network, has put together a resourceful guide with instructions and forms for the 2020 employer reporting requirements. 

Published in Compliance

COVID-19 has certainly had far-reaching effects for employees, including the reduced ability of parents to use pre-tax money set aside in their Dependent Care FSA fund due to the unexpected shutdowns of daycares, nurseries, and schools. Because employees likely decided how much to contribute to their Dependent Care FSA before COVID-19 became widespread, the “use it or lose it” rule may seem particularly harsh for 2020. The good news is that employers can alleviate some of the concern about losing that money after December by simply amending their Section 125 Plan Document to include a grace period for the use of those funds. This gives employees a longer window of time (until March 15th, 2021 for calendar year plans),to use their Dependent Care funds for 2020. Please click here for more information, and if you have questions about amending your Dependent Care FSA Plan Document, please reach out to your Fall River Account Manager.

Published in Compliance

This year has been filled with many questions and not so many clear answers. One of the trickiest ACA issues that Applicable Large Employers (ALEs) have to navigate through is how measurement periods apply during furloughs and leaves of absences due to COVID-19. It’s important for ALEs that offer affordable and minimum essential health insurance coverage to be able to identify their full-time employees and offer group health benefits at the appropriate times; otherwise the employer may be subject to costly penalties.

Published in Compliance
Monday, 16 November 2020 13:38

Proposition 118 Has Passed in Colorado

While there were many uncertainties on election night this November, we did learn that Colorado voters passed Proposition 118 for Paid Family and Medical Leave. The new law will require employers state-wide to provide 12 weeks of paid time off for certain family situations beginning in 2024. 

Published in Healthcare Legislation
Monday, 02 November 2020 13:34

The Flu vs COVID

With the COVID-19 threat growing in Colorado every day and flu season quickly approaching, there are many questions to consider. What is the difference between the two? Can you have the flu and COVID-19 at the same time? Should you still get a flu shot? 

Published in Wellness
Friday, 09 October 2020 10:59

Medical Loss Ratio Rebates

The Medical Loss Ratio obligations under the ACA cap the percentage of premium dollars health insurers may use for administration, marketing, and profits. If a health insurer collects more than the allowed amount for these spending categories, they must provide a rebate to affected groups. A few of the medical carriers have recently sent out Medical Loss Ratio (MLR) rebates, so it’s important to know what can be done with that money. If employees paid any portion of the monthly premiums, employers will likely need to share the rebate with them.

Published in Healthcare Legislation

The Kaiser Family Foundation has released their 2020 Annual National Employer Benefits Survey. The survey has been tracking benefit statistics from private and public employers (other than the Federal Government) in the United States for the last 22 years. The 2020 survey included interviews with 1,765 employers.

Published in Industry Trends

Fall River has written in past articles about how Health Reimbursement Arrangements (HRAs) can be a valuable cost-containment strategy while effectively rendering employees’ benefits unchanged. We recently completed an internal analysis of one client who was able to slash their effective renewal increase down from 15% to 5% by adjusting and expanding their HRA.

Published in Best Practices
Thursday, 24 September 2020 22:33

Taking Virtual Open Enrollment to the Next Level

It’s clear that virtual open enrollment meetings are part of our new normal. Whether you’ve been doing them for years or for the first time this year, there’s a lot to consider if you want to make them as successful as possible. Fall River has been assisting our clients with ideas and best practices to make the process as seamless and engaging as possible for HR professionals and employees. Our national partner, Alera, hosted a great webinar in early September entitled Taking Virtual Open Enrollment to the Next Level

Published in Best Practices
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