Kainos Blog

March 2019

in Employer News, Human Resources

The Risks are Real | Houston Benefits Company

by admin

Even when you proactively anticipate all the people risks that have the potential to impact your workplace, it’s easy to convince yourself there is no risk to you — that it will never happen here. You may think no one at your workplace will harass anyone, no one will sue you over an honest mistake made in administering workers’ comp, no one will accidentally cause...

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20

Mar
2019
Opioid Addiction in the Workplace | Houston Benefits Agency
in Addiction, Custom Content

Opioid Addiction in the Workplace | Houston Benefits Agency

by admin

The opioid crisis has driven overdose deaths in America to all-time highs. By 2017, the opioid mortality rate was five times higher than the rate in 1999. This crisis is not limited to one socio-economic class or one geographic area. Opioid addiction affects those in suburban homes, high-rise office buildings, and schools in every state in America.  Employers must address this epidemic in their workplace...

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11

Mar
2019

in Leadership, Motivation

March Madness 2019: The Ball is in Your Court | Houston Employee Benefits

by admin

March Madness is upon us, and there is no avoiding it. Selection Sunday, when the NCAA Division 1 Men’s Basketball Committee announces which 68 teams made the 2019 tournament, is March 17. Games begin with the First Four on March 19 and 20 and culminate with the Final Four April 6 and 8. While this annual event can impact productivity, employers may find that the...

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6

Mar
2019
February 2019
Here’s to a Healthy Heart! | Houston Benefits Agency
in health, Prevention

Here’s to a Healthy Heart! | Houston Benefits Agency

by admin

Heartbreaks are painful, but did you know that heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States, with more than 630,000 people dying from the condition each year. This equates to one in four deaths attributed to this awful disease. The most common form of heart disease is coronary artery disease (CAD), which is what can cause heart attacks. CAD is caused...

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27

Feb
2019
You Can Reduce the Risk of Workplace Violence | Texas Benefits Agency
in Human Resources, Safety

You Can Reduce the Risk of Workplace Violence | Texas Benefits Agency

by admin

On Friday, February 15, 2019, five employees of a manufacturer in Aurora, Illinois, were killed by an employee they were about to terminate as they met in a conference room. Among the victims were the human resources director and a young HR intern at his first day on the job. This is just the latest incidence of gun violence at a workplace. The Occupational Safety...

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20

Feb
2019

in Custom Content

From Resolutions to Reality | Houston Benefits Agents

by admin

Ever wonder why the resolutions you make in January don’t stick around after March? You aren’t alone! Studies show that only 8% of people keep their New Year’s resolutions. Only 8%! Why? And how do people achieve their goals set at New Year’s? We’ve broken it down for you so you can identify your goal-breaker as well as give you some tips on how to...

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13

Feb
2019
January 2019
Government Shutdown Update: EEOC Closed | Houston Employee Benefit Group
in EEOC

Government Shutdown Update: EEOC Closed | Houston Employee Benefit Group

by admin

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) announced that it is closed because of the federal government shutdown. During this period of federal closure, a limited number of EEOC services are available. Staff will not be available to answer questions from the public or to respond to correspondence from the public. The EEOC will accept charges that must be filed in order to preserve the rights of...

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24

Jan
2019
Gen Z is Coming. Is Your Workplace Ready? | Houston Benefit Advisors
in Human Resources, UBA

Gen Z is Coming. Is Your Workplace Ready? | Houston Benefit Advisors

by admin

While it may feel like businesses are still reeling from adapting to the working millennial, the next generation is already knocking on the HR door. The Society for Human Resource Management went straight to a 16-year old source to see what is on the workplace horizon. Here are a few trends and some potential takeaways for employers. Gen Z is competitive, raised on more pervasive...

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17

Jan
2019

in Blog, Motivation

5 Ways to Say Thank You | Houston Insurance Agents

by admin

As we begin our new year of 2019, we have also closed 2018 with lots of celebrations, gift-giving, and family time. Showing appreciation for others during this generous season comes second nature for some but for others, it doesn’t.  You may be looking for ideas on how to express your gratitude effectively to those around you and so we’ve compiled a list of five unique...

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9

Jan
2019
Treasury, DOL, and HHS Release Two Final Rules on Contraceptive Coverage Exemptions | Houston Employee Benefits
in Compliance News, HR News

Treasury, DOL, and HHS Release Two Final Rules on Contraceptive Coverage Exemptions | Houston Employee Benefits

by admin

The Department of the Treasury (Treasury), Department of Labor (DOL), and Department  of Health and Human Services (HHS) (collectively, Departments) released two final rules on contraceptive coverage exemptions. These rules finalize the Departments’ interim final rules that were published on October 13, 2017. HHS also issued a press release and fact sheet on these final rules. The first final rule provides an exemption from the contraceptive coverage mandate...

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4

Jan
2019
December 2018

in Insurance, Life Insurance

4 Things Life Insurance Is Not | Houston Employee Benefit Advisors

by admin

Are you confused about life insurance? I don’t blame you. When I first started writing about finances more than a decade ago, my understanding of life insurance was limited. I knew about life insurance because it was offered through my employer, and I thought a $50,000 policy was a lot of money. I also recognized insurance company names from late-night TV commercials and the occasional...

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14

Dec
2018
Workplace Wellness | Houston Insurance Brokers
in employees, Workplace

Workplace Wellness | Houston Insurance Brokers

by admin

Picture this: You are sitting at your desk at 3pm and you realize you haven’t gotten up from your chair all day. You look around and see that you’ve been snacking instead of eating a lunch. You have read the same sentence 4 times and still can’t figure out what it means. Your back hurts, your eyes feel dry, and you feel kind of blah....

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12

Dec
2018

in ACA, ALEs, Self-insured

IRS Extends Deadline for Employers to Furnish Forms 1095-C and 1095-B | Houston Benefits Brokers

by admin

On November 29, 2018, the IRS released Notice 2018-94 to extend the due date for employers to furnish 2018 Form 1095-C or 1095-B under the Affordable Care Act’s employer reporting requirement. Employers will have an extra month to prepare and distribute the 2018 form to individuals. The due dates for filing forms with the IRS are not extended. Background Applicable large employers (ALEs), who generally...

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4

Dec
2018
November 2018

in Blog, employees, Human Resources, Workplace

Happier Holidays, the HR Way | Houston Benefits Brokers

by admin

Most people, according to a new survey featured in HR Dive, have the greatest sense of belonging in their own homes. That may not be surprising news, but what is interesting is that one third of respondents felt the greatest sense of belonging in their workplace. A significant percentage, 40 percent, attribute that feeling to actions their colleagues and managers take to check in on...

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29

Nov
2018

in CDC, Employee Benefits, Workplace

It’s Flu Season…Again | TX Benefits Agency

by admin

When flu season hits, absenteeism skyrockets and productivity drops. In a recent article, Employee Benefit News points out that the first step is the “ounce of prevention,” the flu vaccine. Providing for vaccination can be a smart benefit to offer employees, and it requires navigating misinformation about the vaccine, motivating employees to act, and contending with supply issues. For employers who want to increase vaccination...

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20

Nov
2018
PCORI Fee Increase for Health Plans | Houston Benefits Consultants
in ACA, HRAs, HSA, IRS, Kainos Blog, QSEHRA, Self-insured

PCORI Fee Increase for Health Plans | Houston Benefits Consultants

by admin

On November 5, 2018, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) released Notice 2018-85 to announce that the health plan Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) fee for plan years ending between October 1, 2018 and September 30, 2019 will be $2.45 per plan participant. This is an increase from the prior year’s fee of $2.39 due to an inflation adjustment. Background The Affordable Care Act created the...

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7

Nov
2018
Be the Boss You Want to See in the World | Houston Benefits Advisors
in Blog, employees, Human Resources, Kainos Blog, Leadership, UBA, Workplace

Be the Boss You Want to See in the World | Houston Benefits Advisors

by admin

An article in the Harvard Business Review suggests that the traits that make someone become a leader aren’t always the ones that make someone an effective leader. Instead, efficacy can be traced to ethicality. Here are a few tips to be an ethical leader. Humility tops charisma A little charisma goes a long way. Too much and a leader risks being seen as self-absorbed. Instead,...

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2

Nov
2018
October 2018

in Benefits Administration, Blog, Dependent Care, Employee Benefits, FSA, HDHP, Health Care Plans, HMO, HRAs, HSA, Human Resources

Choosing the Right Flexible Benefit for Employees | TX Benefits Agency

by admin

Trying to decide which of the many employer-sponsored benefits out there to offer employees can leave an employer feeling lost in a confusing bowl of alphabet soup—HSA? FSA? DCAP? HRA? What does it mean if a benefit is “limited” or “post-deductible”? Which one is use-it-or-lose-it? Which one has a rollover? What are the limits on each benefit?—and so on. While there are many details to...

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31

Oct
2018
Ask the Experts: Mandatory Flu Shots | Houston Employee Benefits Agency
in ADA, EEOC, health, Kainos Blog, Wellness, Workplace

Ask the Experts: Mandatory Flu Shots | Houston Employee Benefits Agency

by admin

Question: Can we require our employees to get flu shots? Answer: While there is no law that prohibits employers from mandating flu shots — and in some states, the law requires all healthcare workers to get flu shots — you should carefully determine if the benefits to your business outweigh the risks. There has been a rise in litigation brought by employees who object to...

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24

Oct
2018
Looking Backward to Plan Forward | Houston Benefits Firm
in Blog, Employee Benefits, employees, Health Plans, Insurance, Kainos Blog

Looking Backward to Plan Forward | Houston Benefits Firm

by admin

We have entered Open Enrollment season and that means you and everyone in your office are probably reading through enrollment guides and trying to decipher it all. As you begin your research into which plan to choose or even how much to contribute to your Health Savings Account (HSA), consider evaluating how you used your health plan last year. Looking backward can actually help you...

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17

Oct
2018

in Employer News, HR News, Human Resources, NLRB, Workplace

The 80s Are Back, According to the NLRB | Houston Benefits Advisors

by admin

On September 14, 2018, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) announced in the Federal Register a proposed rule to return its joint-employer standard to its 1984 standard — a standard that stood until 2017. It’s returning to the days of Footloose dancing, Sixteen Candles high school sweethearts, Karate Kid champions, and the principle that a joint-employer of another’s employees applies only if: The employer possesses...

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13

Oct
2018

in CMS, Employer News, HDHP, HMO, HR News, Human Resources, Insurance, Kainos Blog, Medicare, Medicare Part D, Prescription Drug Coverage

Medicare Part D Notices Due Oct. 15 | Houston Employee Benefits

by admin

Are you an employer that offers or provides group health coverage to your workers? Does your health plan cover outpatient prescription drugs — either as a medical claim or through a card system? If so, be sure to distribute your plan’s Medicare Part D notice before October 15. Purpose Medicare began offering “Part D” plans — optional prescription drug benefit plans sold by private insurance...

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10

Oct
2018

in employees, Employer News, Human Resources, IRS, IRS reporting, legislation, W-4, Withholding Calculator

Redesigned W-4 Form to Launch in 2020 | Houston Benefits Partners

by admin

When will the new Form W-4 be released? In 2020, according to a press release published by the Treasury Department on September 20, 2018. The department announced that the IRS will implement a redesigned W-4 form for tax year 2020, a timeline that will allow for continued work to refine the new approach for the form. As a result of the enactment of the 2017...

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2

Oct
2018
October 2018