IRS Seeks Comment on Self-Funded Plans Fees

June 27, 2011 ( - The Internal Revenue Service is asking for comments on a health care reform law provision that will fund comparative clinical effectiveness research relating to patient-centered outcomes in part by fees to be paid by issuers of health insurance policies and sponsors of self-insured health plans.

The agencies said they intend to publish proposed regulations implementing and providing guidance on the statutory requirements applicable to issuers and plan sponsors that pay those fees. Notice 2011-35 invites comments on how the fees should be determined and paid, including comments on several possible rules, safe harbors, and other issues.   

While the notice does not provide guidance, it describes potential guidance that Treasury and the Service expect to propose to implement the new fees and seeks comments on this potential guidance.  

The agencies are also asking for comments on the type or types of health reimbursement arrangements (HRAs) that would be excluded from the definition of applicable self-insured health plan because they provide a type of coverage that, if provided by an insurance policy, would not cause the policy to be treated as a specified health insurance policy.  

Notice 2011-35 is at