Keeping up with the Affordable Care Act this year has been quite a rollercoaster ride. Last year at this time, we felt uncertain about ACA’s future following the election of President Trump. Here we are again, feeling the same uncertainty after the president used his executive powers to undercut the law, and Congress has just reached a deal to gut the law further with its tax reform proposal.
By the narrowest of margins, House Republicans approved an amended version of the American Health Care Act (AHCA) on May 4 (the bill needed 216 votes to pass; it won 217). Although the measure now faces long odds – if not a major overhaul – to get through the Senate, employers and invested HR/benefits professionals should know six things about AHCA as it gets one step closer to the president’s desk.
Recent news in the last several weeks had been focused on the questions surrounding the American Healthcare Act (AHCA): Will it get enough votes to pass? Is it a sufficient departure from ACA? How will it be funded? What is the burden to employers in reporting and cost requirements? However, the White House and House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) decided to withdraw AHCA from going to a House floor vote. With that, employers can go back to giving ACA their full compliance attention for the time being. So, here are two important facts employers need now:
Last week – just as we were packing our bags for Vision San Francisco – House Republicans released their plans to repeal/replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The proposed legislation, announced March 6, doesn’t technically repeal or replace ACA in its entirety, but instead uses a congressional process called budget reconciliation to roll back ACA’s major taxes, penalties, and funding streams. These separate measures are on parallel tracks through two large House committees under the umbrella name of the American Health Care Act (AHCA). Progress is moving quickly; House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) says he wants to have bills ready for the president’s signature before lawmakers head home for the Easter recess in April.
It’s not often you can say “good news” and “IRS” in the same breath, so I’m thrilled to take the rare opportunity to do just that: Please join me in celebrating the good news that Angel Hower, our ACA Product Lead, has been named to the IRS Tax Payer Advocacy Panel (TAP).
Since President Trump took office, there has been a lot of conversation about the possible repeal of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The president’s executive order on January 20, which directed the Secretary of Health and Human Services to lessen the law’s economic burden, sent the dialogue into overdrive.
It has been an eventful week for our country as we said goodbye to the Obama family and welcomed President Trump into office. With the transition to a new administration comes apprehension of what changes are on the horizon. This is especially true for HR and benefits professionals who will be directly affected by any actions related to the Affordable Care Act (ACA).
Our recent webinar, “Compliance Countdown: 5 ACA Tips So You Don’t Drop the Ball in 2017,” featured three expert speakers offering key strategies to help employers hit ACA compliance deadlines with confidence – and with their sanity still intact!
“It ain’t time to worry yet.” This famous line from one of my favorite books, To Kill a Mockingbird, is relevant to so many situations in life and applies to where we benefits professionals find ourselves in the aftermath of the presidential election. After seeing the election results, many – myself included – wondered breathlessly, “What happens to ACA?!”
It’s not often that you hear “good news” in the same sentence as the Affordable Care Act, but lo and behold, recent news from the IRS made this a reality for those experiencing TIN (Tax Identification Number) validation failures when transmitting 1095-C data.
National Small Business Appreciation Week (NSBAW) is an opportunity for us to celebrate and salute the contributions of small businesses across the country. This week is particularly meaningful to me because Businessolver started nearly two decades ago as a small business.
March was a busy month for HR pros, as they were faced with meeting the first deadline for Affordable Care Act (ACA) compliance reporting. All 1095-B and 1095-C forms were required to be postmarked for delivery to applicable employees by March 31. And though we all have (hopefully) conquered this first reporting hurdle, the madness won’t be stopping any time soon. Next up, companies filing 250 or more returns must submit electronic copies of 1095-B/1095-C and 1094-B/1094-C forms by the fast-approaching deadline of June 30.
It’s that time of year. Basketball games are dominating the airwaves and everyone is anxiously tracking their brackets. For those of us who work in the world of benefits, however, we’re anxiously tracking something else – Affordable Care Act compliance reports.
Over the past few years, an increasing number of companies have been turning to outsourcing partners for benefits administration and compliance management. Why? Companies today want — and need — the more specialized expertise that those vendors have, particularly when it comes to complying with the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and other workplace regulations.
That’s the one of the top-level findings in a trends report, Corporate Benefits Departments: Staffing and Operations, released last month by the nonprofit International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans (IFEBP).
Consumer-directed health plans will remain a key strategy for avoiding the ACA “Cadillac” tax on high-cost plans, while employers project their per-employee health benefit costs to rise an average of 4.2 percent next year, after they’ve made planned changes, according to the early responses from the recent National Survey of Employer-Sponsored Health Plans.
It’s been an exciting week here at Businessolver! Earlier we announced that we have officially received notification from the IRS that we are now an "Approved Transmitter," allowing the electronic filing of compliance documents to the Affordable Care Act Information Returns (AIR) program on behalf of our clients. This means we have been moved to Production Status for IRS transmittal of ACA data for 2014.
So, why is this such a big deal?
With the March 31st 2016 deadline to file Forms 1094-C and 1095-C looming, there has been a lot of buzz around vendors working to get their official IRS transmitter approval in order to officially transmit data to the IRS for 6055/6056 reporting. While it may sound like a simple certification to receive, the path to becoming an IRS transmitter is a long and tedious path that involves several flaming hoops. Just how many, you ask?
On Oct. 1, the U.S. Senate passed a bill that would rescind the Affordable Care Act’s controversial expansion of the definition of a small employer, paving the way for the bill to go to President Barack Obama, who is expected to sign the bipartisan measure.
When Congress passed the Trade Preferences Extension Act of 2015 this summer, it rewrote the rules of U.S. trade policy in ways that ranged from defining the kinds of trade deals the President can negotiate to extending and revising economic benefits and opportunities to sub-Saharan Africa. The law also included a tiny provision that had little to do with international trade and had everything to do with employers who offer health care benefits.
Are you an ACA know-it-all? Or are you like the majority of HR pros on our recent ACA webinar who said they were 50 percent or less confident in their ACA solution? If the volume of questions we received in our ACA: Clear as Mud webinar is any indication (there were no less than 125 questions asked by listeners), there is still a need for more education. Buff up on these ACA tips to get started: