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Agencies Issue Proposed Rules and Plans | Chicago Benefit Advisors

October was a busy month in the employee benefits world. President Trump announced a new Acting Secretary for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Eric Hargan fills the position vacated by Tom Price, who resigned in late September 2017. The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) issued a proposed rule to delay a … Continued

How to Make the Most Out of Your FSA at Year-End | Chicago Benefit Advisors

As 2017 comes to a close, it’s time to act on the money sitting in your Flexible Spending/Savings Account (FSA). Unlike a Health Savings Account or HSA, pre-taxed funds contributed to an FSA are lost at the end of the year if an employee doesn’t use them, and an employer doesn’t adopt a carryover policy. … Continued

PPOs Dominate Despite Savings with HMOs and CDHPs | Chicago Benefit Advisors

The findings of our 2017 Health Plan Survey show a continuation of steady trends and some surprises. It’s no surprise, however, that costs continue to rise. The average annual health plan cost per employee for all plan types is $9,934, an increase from 2016, when the average cost was $9,727. There are significant cost differences … Continued

Top 7 Trends from 2017 UBA Health Plan Survey | Chicago Benefit Advisors

We recently unveiled the latest findings from our 2017 Health Plan Survey. With data on 20,099 health plans sponsored by 11,221 employers, the UBA survey is nearly three times larger than the next two of the nation’s largest health plan benchmarking surveys combined. Here are the top trends at a glance.Cost-shifting, plan changes, and other … Continued

Benefit Plan Design: Charging Employees Different Premiums | Chicago Benefit Advisors

Employers who are designing a health and welfare benefit plan for their employees often wonder about the rules relating to setting premiums for employees. Employers generally have significant flexibility in this part of their plan’s design. Common structures contemplated by employers include, but are not limited to:Charging all employees a flat amount for their health … Continued

IRS Releases Final Forms and Instructions for 2017 ACA Reporting | Chicago Benefit Advisors

Instructions for both the 1094-B and 1095-B and the 1094-C and 1095-C were released, as were the forms for 1094-B, 1095-B, 1094-C, and 1095-C.Reporting will be due early in 2018, based on coverage in 2017. For calendar year 2017, Forms 1094-C, 1095-C, 1094-B, and 1095-B must be filed by February 28, 2018, or April 2, … Continued

It’s Open Enrollment Time! | Chicago Benefit Advisors

Fall.  With it comes cooler temperatures’, falling leaves, warm seasonal scents like turkey and pumpkin pie, and Open Enrollment.  It goes without saying; employees who understand the effectiveness of their benefits are much more pleased with those packages, happier with their employers, and more engaged in their work. So, as your company gears up for … Continued

President Trump Ends ACA Cost Sharing Reductions | Chicago Benefit Advisors

On the evening of October 12, 2017, President Trump announced that cost sharing reductions for low income Americans in relation to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) would be stopped. The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has confirmed that payments will be stopped immediately. While there is no direct impact to … Continued

Shhhhhh! | Chicago Benefit Advisors

There are places where you expect things to be noisy, such as a rock concert, and places where you expect it to be quiet, like an office. And while nobody likes being “shushed,” there are few things more annoying than trying to work when someone else is talking in the background.The ‘80s music group ‘Til … Continued

October 2017 Executive Order on Healthcare | Chicago Benefit Advisors

On October 12, 2017, the White House released an Executive Order, signed by President Trump, titled “Promoting Healthcare Choice and Competition Across the United States.”It is important to note that the Executive Order (EO) does not implement any new laws or regulations, but instead directs various federal agencies to explore options relating to association health … Continued