Articles

Employer Reporting Errors

Now that the deadline under Sections 6055 and 6056 for issuing statements to employees/covered individuals has passed, employers may begin to identify errors in the statements issued. And once statements are filed with the IRS, the IRS may identify errors or information that does not match its records. In both cases, employers must take steps to rectify the errors or address inconsistencies (or demonstrate reasonable cause) to avoid potential penalties under Code §§6721 and 6722.

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Employer Exchange Subsidy Notices – Appeal or Not?

Employers are starting to receive notices from public Exchanges indicating that one or more employees are receiving a subsidy when purchasing individual health insurance coverage through a public Exchange. This could potentially trigger employer penalties under §4980H. If an employer receives such a notice, the employer has a right, but is not required, to appeal when they feel an employee should not be receiving a subsidy because the employer offers minimum value, affordable coverage.

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Disability Insurance Due Diligence

According to multiple surveys, approximately 90% of employers offer long-term disability (LTD) insurance to their employees.

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EEOC Final Rules on Wellness Programs

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has released two separate sets of final regulations relating to wellness program compliance under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA). Despite a few recent court rulings against the EEOC’s voluntary requirements for wellness programs, the final rules generally clarify and confirm what was previously set forth in the proposed rules issued last year while expressing EEOC’s reasons for disagreeing with the court decisions.

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Does Your Company Have a Network Breach Plan?

Your company may have purchased cyber coverage, but does that mean you have a network breach response plan in place? Parker, Smith & Feek’s Ed Rhone can tell you more in the Puget Sound Business Journal.

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REMINDER: PCORI Fees Due July 31

Employers who sponsor self-funded medical plans must report and pay the ACA Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) fees no later than July 31, 2016. Health insurance carriers will pay the fee directly in the case of fully-insured plans.

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PART 3 OF 3: Construction Industry Risks: Cyber Insurance

Cyber Insurance
Despite our heightened awareness and best in class cyber controls, most companies will at one time or another experience a cyber security event. Whether it’s a malicious hacker, extortionist, or just a disgruntled employee, our networks seem to be under constant surveillance and attack.

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PART 2 OF 3: Construction Industry Risks: Data Privacy and Cyber Security Risk Management and Risk Transfer

Data Security Risk Management Basics
The risks associated with the collection, transfer, and retention of data are real and significant. For a construction company, it is of paramount importance to identify areas of exposure and develop adequate risk management programs that address data privacy and security. To help you get started, here is a list of questions to ask yourself when developing your corporate risk management plan. These should include, but not be limited to, identifying and inventorying your corporate data.

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PART 1 OF 3: Construction Industry Risks: Data Privacy and Cyber Security Basics

Rarely does a week pass when we don’t hear about another major cyber breach, computer virus, or social engineering scam. Healthcare, financial institutions, retail, and governmental networks tend to experience the highest frequency of attacks. However, that does not mean that the construction industry is immune to cyber attacks. The truth of the matter is that any business connected to the internet is a potential victim. This is the first in a three part series discussing cyber events as they relate to the construction industry. Below we discuss why contractors need to address the risks associated with cyber exposures. In part two, we will discuss cyber risk management basics: what you can do to prevent a cyber event from occurring and how you can minimize damage if and when they do occur. Finally, in part three, we will discuss risk transfer and how outsourcing, contract management, and insurance can protect your firm from loss.

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Form 1095 Deadline and Penalties

As part of the ACA employer reporting requirements, certain employers must provide a Form 1095-C or 1095-B to all applicable employees by March 31, 2016. Employers subject to employer reporting requirements who fail to provide the required Form 1095s by the deadline may face penalties similar to those imposed for W-2 reporting.
Background

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Proposed Revisions to SBC and Uniform Glossary

On February 22, 2016, the Departments of Labor, Treasury, and Health and Human Services (“the Departments”) released proposed updates to the Uniform Summary of Benefits and Coverage (SBC) template, instructions, and Uniform Glossary (“glossary”). The proposed documents build largely on the revisions first proposed in December 2014. However, they incorporate additional stakeholder feedback—primarily from the NAIC—and the Departments are requesting public comments through the end of March before the documents are finalized.

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Does Your Firm Have a Network Breach Plan?

Your IT Department has assured the latest updates and patches are in place for your firm’s network and your technology consultants are confident the system is set to prevent a hacking attack. But, just in case, your firm has recently purchased “cyber liability” insurance. It is time to sit back and forget about those headlines of security breaches that occur for other professional services firms. Belt and suspenders have now been added to the network with insurance, right? Unfortunately, understanding the firm’s network exposure is only the beginning of the risk management process – you’re still at step 1. To complete the risk management process, professional services firms should familiarize themselves with network security procedures and insurance, ensure stakeholders are aware of the coverage purchased, and incorporate the correct consultants into a breach response plan.

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