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An Update on Healthcare Reform: Market Stabilization

Apr 16, 2017 10:26:46 PM / by Deborah Hyde posted in Front Page Post, Affordable Care Act, Deborah Hyde, individual market

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The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released final regulations (the Regulations) on April 13 aimed at stabilizing the individual and small group markets. Effective June 19, 2017, the Regulations represent President Trump’s first major change to the Affordable Care Act in an effort to provide insurers with more flexibility – and reasons to stay in the marketplace. The Regulations implement the following:

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The New Fiduciary Rule: What it means for Employer Compliance

Apr 4, 2017 9:18:02 PM / by Deborah Hyde posted in fiduciary, hr compliance, Front Page Post, 401(k), Deborah Hyde, DOL fiduciary rule, ERISA, Financial, industry LEADERSHIP

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Update: As of April 4, 2017, the Department of Labor finalized a 60-day delay to the effective date of the new fiduciary rule (the Rule). The Rule was originally set to take effect April 10, 2017, but as a result of the delay, will become effective June 9, 2017.  The delay is in response to President Trump's directive that the DOL review and report on how the Rule may negatively impact consumers. 

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San Jose's Opportunity to Work Ordinance takes Effect

Mar 15, 2017 12:28:51 AM / by Deborah Hyde posted in hr compliance, Front Page Post, Opportunity to Work, San Jose, California, Deborah Hyde

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In the November 2016 election, San Jose voters approved a ballot measure that would require employers to offer additional hours to existing part-time employees before hiring new employees. The measure, known as the Opportunity to Work Ordinance (the Ordinance), took effect March 13, 2017. Though the goal of the Ordinance is to provide part-time workers with the opportunity to work additional hours, earn higher wages, and - in some instances - become eligible for benefits, it does impose a number of new employer obligations.

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Domestic Partner Coverage in California

Mar 12, 2017 10:16:22 PM / by Deborah Hyde posted in hr compliance, Front Page Post, Uncategorized, benefits CONSULTING, California, Deborah Hyde, domestic partners

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domestic-partner-california.jpgDomestic partner coverage under a group health plan can be a complex issue for employers, particularly in light of the U.S. Supreme Court's 2015 ruling that legalized same-sex marriage nationwide (Obergefell v. Hodges). California law continues to require domestic partner coverage of some employer-sponsored plans, while others are faced with the decision. But important considerations exist for all employers with respect to domestic partner coverage.

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In California, Single-User Restrooms must be All-Gender

Feb 26, 2017 11:12:46 AM / by Deborah Hyde posted in hr compliance, Front Page Post, California, California Employers, Deborah Hyde, employment law

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single-user-restrooms.jpgEffective March 1, 2017, all single-user restrooms in California businesses, government buildings, and places of public accommodation must be "all-gender" (or gender neutral) to comply with the State's Equal Restroom Access Act (the Act). The Act applies to employers in California and requires specific signage be displayed to indicate the restroom is all-gender.

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Extended Deadline for 2016 ACA Reporting

Nov 20, 2016 2:53:28 PM / by Deborah Hyde posted in ACA, ACA Reporting, hr compliance, IRS, Front Page Post, Affordable Care Act, Deborah Hyde

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On November 18, the IRS issued a release that provides employers with an unexpected extension of time to comply with 2016 ACA reporting requirements. Although this deadline extension is not nearly as generous as the extension provided for 2015 reporting, it will undoubtedly be a welcome relief to employers.
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IRS Releases Final ACA Reporting Forms for 2016

Oct 20, 2016 10:41:21 AM / by Deborah Hyde posted in ACA, ACA Reporting, hr compliance, IRS, Front Page Post, 2016, Affordable Care Act, Deborah Hyde

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After previously releasing draft versions of the forms in July, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) released the final versions of the 2016 ACA reporting forms in early October – less than four months out from the first of the two reporting deadlines. Fortunately, the final forms do not differ significantly from the forms used for 2015 reporting. There are, however, some key differences for employers to keep in mind.

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You Received an Exchange Subsidy Notice - Now What?

Sep 13, 2016 10:29:30 AM / by Deborah Hyde posted in ACA, exchange, hr compliance, Front Page Post, Affordable Care Act, appeal, Deborah Hyde, penalties

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In Spring 2016, Exchanges began issuing notices to employers when an employee is determined by the Exchange to be eligible for a health insurance subsidy. This subsidy notice (Notice) is particularly important to Applicable Large Employers (ALEs), but all employers should be prepared to receive a Notice and respond appropriately.

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New IRS Regulations May Minimize the Advantages of Opt-out Arrangements

Aug 22, 2016 11:43:44 AM / by Deborah Hyde posted in ACA, hr compliance, Front Page Post, opt-out, affordability, Affordable Care Act, Deborah Hyde

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On July 8, 2016, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) released proposed regulations regarding the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) individual mandate. The proposed regulations also discuss the concept of employer-provided affordable coverage, and highlight the interaction between affordable coverage and an opt-out arrangement. While not final, the regulations provide reliable guidelines for employers who utilize opt-out provisions, as well as employers who are interested in incorporating such an arrangement into their group health plan.

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