Archive for Trending’ Category

Agencies Provide Relief for Group Plans and Donation Programs Affected by Hurricanes/Wildfires | Houston Benefit Advisors
Dec

15

2017

Agencies Provide Relief for Group Plans and Donation Programs Affected by Hurricanes/Wildfires | Houston Benefit Advisors

Guidance for Group Health Plans Impacted by Hurricane Maria and California Wildfires The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) issued a news release to recognize that plan participants and beneficiaries may encounter problems due to Hurricane Maria and the California Wildfires. The DOL advises plan fiduciaries to make reasonable accommodations to prevent workers’ loss of benefits and to take steps to minimize the possibility of individuals losing benefits…

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Employee Benefit Plans and the House Republican Tax Reform Bill | Houston Benefit Advisors
Dec

1

2017

Employee Benefit Plans and the House Republican Tax Reform Bill | Houston Benefit Advisors

On November 2, 2017, House Republicans introduced a tax reform bill (H.R.1-115th Congress) called the “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act” that, if passed, would impact multiple aspects of the tax code. Many of these changes relate to employee benefit plans, particularly in relation to certain fringe benefits. Dependent Care Accounts A dependent care flexible spending account (DCFSA) is a pre-tax benefit account used to pay…

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Nov

24

2017

UBA Survey: Weary Families Get a Break While Singles See Out-of-Pocket Cost Increases | Houston Benefit Advisors

While the rate impact of the regulatory environment plays out, one thing is clear from the 2017 UBA Health Plan Survey: employers continue to shift a greater share of expenses to employees through out-of-pocket cost increases. While this is just one of 7 mega trends uncovered in the survey, it is particularly interesting this year because singles were hit more heavily than families as compared…

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Understanding EAP Confidentiality | Houston Benefit Advisors
Sep

9

2017

Understanding EAP Confidentiality | Houston Benefit Advisors

When it comes to Employee Assistance Programs, confidentiality is a concern for both employers and employees. As an employer, it is helpful to understand the terms and processes your EAP uses to keep information confidential and ensure that your employees and your workplace are safe. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) rules apply to EAPs and their affiliate providers. All information that is…

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Flex Work: Advantages in the New Workforce | Houston Benefit Advisors
Apr

19

2017

Flex Work: Advantages in the New Workforce | Houston Benefit Advisors

Flex Work.   No doubt you’ve heard this term (or some variation) floating around the last decade or so, but what exactly does it mean? Flexible work can vary by definition depending on who you ask, but one thing is for sure, it’s here to stay and changing the way we view the workforce. According to a recent study by Randstad, employer commitment to increase the…

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An Employer’s Guide to Navigating the ACA’s Strong Headwinds | Houston Benefit Advisors
Apr

17

2017

An Employer’s Guide to Navigating the ACA’s Strong Headwinds | Houston Benefit Advisors

One might describe the series of events leading to the death of the American Health Care Act (Congress’s bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act) as something like a ballistic missile exploding at launch. The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) repeal debate began nearly a decade ago with former President Barack Obama’s first day in office and reemerged as a serious…

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Congress Abandons Effort to Repeal the ACA | Houston Benefit Advisors
Apr

1

2017

Congress Abandons Effort to Repeal the ACA | Houston Benefit Advisors

On Friday, Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives pulled pending legislation, known as the American Health Care Act, from further consideration. The bill had been scheduled for a vote on the House floor Friday afternoon but, recognizing that it was headed for defeat, the House leadership cancelled the vote. It is now unlikely that Congress will pursue any legislation to repeal or replace the…

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TeleMedicine – The NextGen Benefit of Minor Healthcare | Houston Benefit Advisors
Mar

29

2017

TeleMedicine – The NextGen Benefit of Minor Healthcare | Houston Benefit Advisors

It’s not surprising that 2017 stands to be the year many will have an experience to share using a Telemedicine or a Virtual Doctor service. With current market trends, government regulations, and changing economic demands, it’s fast becoming a more popular alternative to traditional healthcare visits.  And, as healthcare costs continue to rise and there are more strategic pricing options and digital models available to…

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Medicare Part D: Creditable Coverage Disclosures | Houston Benefit Advisors
Mar

23

2017

Medicare Part D: Creditable Coverage Disclosures | Houston Benefit Advisors

Entities such as employers with group health plans that provide prescription drug coverage to individuals that are eligible for Medicare Part D have two major disclosure requirements that they must meet at least annually: Provide annual written notice to all Medicare eligible individuals (employees, spouses, dependents, retirees, COBRA participants, etc.) who are covered under the prescription drug plan. Disclose to the Centers for Medicare and…

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