PLANSPONSOR Weekend Newsdash
Week ending August 9th, 2019

Open enrollment season is coming soon, so now is a great time for employers to take a fresh look at their health care benefits. To help with this, Mercer has published “Top 10 Compliance Issues for 2020 Health and Fringe Benefit Planning.” Recent lawsuits can also inform employers about how to design benefits and what to look for from providers. Employers want to lower health benefit costs, and strategies to do so already exist, according to Dave Chase, co-founder of Health Rosetta. Employers also need to prepare their communications and education materials. Lively, a health savings account (HSA) platform for employers and individuals, found many employees do not understand their health care benefits, which could prevent them from selecting the best plan to fit them and to not use their benefits properly. This could lead to higher costs for both employers and employees. This edition of PLANSPONSOR Weekend is designed to help plan sponsors as they review their health benefit offerings.

Editor's choice
Compliance
Yale Sued Over Wellness Program ‘Penalty’
The lawsuit says the so-called “incentive” Yale offers for participating in the wellness program are in fact a “penalty” that violates non-participants’ right, and it notes that the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) withdrew the incentive portions of its wellness program rules. Read more >
Compliance
A Court and the DOL Weigh In on Cross-Plan Offsetting for Health Benefits
An appellate court decision and an amicus brief filed in the case by the Department of Labor (DOL) emphasize plan sponsors’ duty to monitor what health plan providers or third-party administrators (TPAs) are doing. Read more >
Benefits
Strategies to Lower Employer Health Benefit Costs Already Exist
Employers can lower their health benefits spend, as well as costs for employees, by moving away from preferred provider organizations (PPOs), utilizing value-based care and using benefits consultants instead of traditional brokers. Read more >
Benefits
Education About Health Benefits Can Lower Costs for Employers and Employees
Many employees don’t understand health benefits—including that most insurance covers preventive care. Better education can lead employees to use benefits correctly and become healthier. Read more >
Compliance
Additional Preventive Care Benefits Permitted for HDHPs
The IRS has issued guidance allowing high-deductible health plans (HDHPs) with health savings accounts (HSAs) to cover specified medications and services used to treat chronic diseases prior to meeting the plan deductible. Read more >
MOST POPULAR STORIES
Employer Health Benefit Costs to Rise 6.5% in 2020

A focus on managing chronic conditions, and education to improve health care utilization can help employers manage cost increases.

Avoid Pitfalls to Properly Replacing DC Plan Investments

An analysis found monitoring DC plan investment menus and making necessary changes results in better performance, and researchers have followed up with four pitfalls to avoid when making investment changes.

Sidecar Savings Accounts Create Current and Future Financial Security
As corporate America considers its practical and moral obligations to employees, a logical place for it to focus is on helping each one become more financially secure—both now and post-employment.
(b)lines Ask the Experts – Can a 401(a) Plan Account be Rolled Into a 403(b) Plan?
Experts from Groom Law Group and Cammack Retirement Group answer questions concerning 403(b) plans and regulations.
Plan Sponsors Should Address Financial Squeeze Put on Gen X

Struggling with debt and budgeting, Gen Xers are in their prime earning years, they are getting close to retirement and they are taking care of both their children and their parents.

Editorial: Alison Cooke Mintzer alison.mintzer@strategic-i.com

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