HHS Releases Small Group Insurance Regulations

Last week, The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released two sets of proposed regulations related to provisions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) important to individual and fully-insured small group health plans. Rules were released regarding essential health benefits, plan actuarial valuation, and small group rating and underwriting rules.

Read more

Post-Election Update Seminar Video

Healthcare Post-Election Update Description and Disclaimer In the Healthcare Reform Post-Election Update, Parker, Smith and Feek (PS&F) gathered three healthcare insurance experts to examine the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

Read more


This summary is provided as an overview of some of the provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA). For more details or questions, please contact your Parker, Smith & Feek Benefits Team.

Read more

The Election is Over – Where Do We Go from Here?

With the re-election of President Obama, and very little change in the make-up of Congress, the path to full implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) now seems clear.  Many employers may have not aggressively acted to address the impact on their employer plans due to the questions about the future of the law and because some of the most significant provisions of the ACA aren’t effective until 2014.

Read more

Superstorm Sandy’s Insurance Considerations (Briefly)

By John Schmidt, Vice President, Real Estate Practice Leader

Every single one of the millions of people in the Northeast who experienced Superstorm Sandy has his or her own personal story of that harrowing day and night. Ask them a year from now and their recollection will probably include some comment regarding insurance – good or bad.  

Read more

CDI Prevention and Your Insurance

Clostridium difficile (C. diff or CDI) is hitting the news. As much as we would like the media to take a levelheaded approach to the subject, they’re framing CDI as the next "killer infectious disease.

Read more

Workers’ Compensation: Good News for Washington Employers

L&I proposed no increase in the Workers’ Compensation tax rates for 2013. This news is surprising as L&I had set the table for significant tax rate increases for 2013 and future years to fix the underfunding of their contingency reserve.

Read more

Guidance Issued on the Definition of Full-time Employees and 90-Day Waiting Period Rules

On Friday, August 31st the IRS released Notice 2012-58 which includes much-anticipated guidance related to the definition of full-time employees for the purpose of the employer shared responsibility rules and related penalties contained in the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

Read more

Crowdfunding: Who Will (and Who Won’t) Be Doing It

By Kevin M. LaCroix, Attorney and Executive Vice President, RT ProExec, a division of R-T Specialty, LLC

Among the features of the recently enacted JOBS Act that has attracted the most attention are the legislation’s provisions for "crowdfunding." Under these provisions, a company is permitted to raise up to $1 million during any 12-month period through an SEC-registered crowdfunding portal. While these provisions have attracted a great deal of discussion and even controversy, a more basic question is – who will actually be taking advantage of this new fundraising procedure?

Read more

Seattle Paid Sick Leave Update and FAQ

As most Seattle employers know by now, beginning September 1, 2012, the City of Seattle will require that all but the smallest employers provide paid sick leave to their Seattle employees. Seattle Paid Sick and Safe Time (PSST) mandates that most employers provide paid leave, which increases depending on the size of a company’s workforce. Once employees have worked 180 days or more, they must be allowed to use PSST for their own or their family members’ illnesses, as well as for certain safety-related reasons.

Read more

Tips for Managing Employment Practices Liability in Hospitality Industry

By Nick Montera, Vice President; Parker, Smith & Feek

One of the fastest growing areas of litigation for businesses of all sizes is employment practices, with a 32% increase in charges since 20051. These allegations include Sexual Harassment, Racial Discrimination, Wrongful Termination, Wrongful Discipline, Negligent Evaluation, Failure to Employ or Promote, Hostile Work Environment, Breach of Employment Contract, and Deprivation of Career Opportunity.

Read more

Washington Workers’ Comp: Rate Increase Coming to Rebuild the Contingency Reserve

The State of Washington, which administers the Workers’ Compensation system for the state, has a financial problem because revenues have been too low to fund workers’ comp expenses. The reserve fund to pay workers’ comp benefits is very low, primarily due to the 2008-2011 recession, and a slow economic recovery.

Read more