The last year has brought changes that can be beneficial to your business and employees, if you know what they are and how to apply them.
Here are a few of those changes to keep in mind as another year of open enrollment approaches.
- The final fiduciary rule will change how many retirement plans receive services for the better. Under the final rule, investment advisors will, among other things, be required to make more disclosures and provide advice in the best interest of the participants (you and your employees).
- Ending employer provided coverage and sending employees to the marketplace is in the news. Doing so is tricky for a lot of reasons. One likely concern being employee dissatisfaction. Another being prohibitions on employers reimbursing employees for benefits purchased on the marketplace. If you are going to drop or change health benefits, it is important do it right by getting experience consultants and counsel.
- HIPAA compliance is becoming increasingly important and mistakes are becoming more expensive. HIPAA now applies to far more businesses than some people expect. For example, if you provide services to a medical provider or insurance company (from customer support to cleaning services to software) and have access to protected health information, HIPAA may apply. When HIPAA does apply, compliance is becoming even more imperative as people become more sensitive to their privacy and penalties being assessed seem to grow with each announcement.
- COBRA’s future. It may be unclear what the future holds for COBRA’s popularity, but it is still around and compliance is still important. The ACA did make some changes and provided those eligible for COBRA with some alternatives (often more affordable alternatives).
These are only a few of the many ways benefits have changed. Keeping up can be hard, but taking the time to look into even just these four issues can put you on the path to proper compliance.
Contributed by Charles Russman, Attorney, Bodman Law Group.
View the on-demand webinar “Evolution of HIPAA & COBRA: Keep Up with the Changes” with Charles Russman.