Documenting Prior Coverage after HIPAA Certs

Question: How should employers respond to requests for a HIPAA certificate of creditable coverage to document prior coverage through the employer’s group health plan? Compliance Team Response: The HIPAA certificate of creditable coverage is no longer a required notice.  The certificate was eliminated at the end of 2014 because its primary function was to address pre-existing […]

Hurricane Florence Tips and Resources

With Hurricane Florence setting a disastrous path towards the East Coast, we want to make sure everyone is safe, connected and aware of how we can help. We have pulled together the below information to help you during this current situation as well as prepared for future storms, including: General Tips  Helpful Resources How to […]

Financial Hardship Election Change Requests

Question:   Can an employee change a health plan election to a lower-cost option or revoke coverage altogether based on financial hardship? Employees elect to pay the employee-share of the health plan premium on a pre-tax basis through the employer’s Section 125 cafeteria plan.  As described in more detail below, employees cannot change their Section 125 […]

HSAs for Veterans

Question: How does a veteran’s eligibility for VA benefits affect HSA eligibility? Compliance Team Response: Special Rule: VA Eligibility Not Disqualifying Coverage The IRS’s special rule for veterans provides that mere eligibility for VA benefits is not disqualifying coverage for purposes of HSA eligibility—despite the fact that VA benefits are not subject to the minimum HDHP […]

Excess HSA Contributions

Question: What is the process where an employer accidentally contributes to an employee’s HSA in excess of the statutory limit? Option 1 (Returned by Bank): The preferred option is for the employer to request that the custodian return the excess contributions to the company.  The custodian is not required to agree to this request.  HSA custodians […]

Employee HSA Front Loading

Question:  Can employers permit employees to front-load their HSA contributions through payroll to reach the statutory limit at the start of the year? As discussed below, we recommend not permitting employees to front-load HSA contributions through payroll. Employee Pre-Tax HSA Contributions Made Through Section 125 Cafeteria Plan Employees make pre-tax HSA contribution elections through the […]

Employer HSA Contributions during Protected Leave

Question:   Are employers required to continue making the employer HSA contribution for employees on a protected leave of absence? Compliance Team Response: As described below, employers are not required to make the employer HSA contribution for employees on a protected leave of absence. The primary protected leave laws (FMLA and CFRA/PDL, or other state equivalents) […]

Employee Fails to Establish HSA

Question: An employee enrolled in the HDHP but terminated from employment without ever establishing an HSA through the employer’s custodian.  What happens to the HSA contributions for that employee? Compliance Team Response: Where an employee terminates employment prior to establishing an HSA through the employer’s custodian, the employer should refund the all of the employee’s HSA […]

Waiting Period Exceptions

Question:  An employer with a 90-day waiting period in its health plan wants to make an exception for an important new hire to provide immediate eligibility.  If the insurance carrier approves the exception, are there any other considerations? Compliance Team Response: As you noted, carrier approval is a crucial consideration.  Insurance carriers will pay claims […]