27, 2010 – 2010 Estate Tax Change
On December 17, 2010, the President
signed into law the “Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization,
and Job Creation Act of 2010” (the Act). A sweeping tax package, the Act
includes a two-year extension of the Bush-era tax cuts, temporary estate
tax relief, a two-year patch to the alternative minimum tax, a two-percentage-point
reduction in employee-paid payroll taxes and the self-employment tax for
2011, plus many other tax breaks for individuals and business.
What follows is a summary of the provisions of the Act related
to estate planning. (No attempt was made to summarize all 1,900 pages of the bill.)
Since most of the provisions are only one or two year extensions, prompt
action will be required to maximize the Act’s tax benefits. Please click
here to read more . . .
November 2, 2010 - 2011 Cost of Living Adjustments Announced
WASHINGTON — On October 28, 2010, the Internal Revenue Service announced
cost of living adjustments affecting dollar limitations for pension plans
and other retirement-related items for tax year 2011. In general, these
limits will either remain unchanged, or the inflation adjustments for
2011 will be small.
This eActionAlert contains the full text of IRS Information Release 2010-108
dated October 28, 2010. We felt providing you with the full text was the
best way to ensure that you would be up-to-date on all of the announced
changes. To read the entire Release, click here.
August 6, 2010 – Overview of the Preventative Care Regulations
New Interim Final Regulations (Regulations) released by the Department
of Health and Human Services, the Department of Treasury and the Department
of Labor require health plans to cover specified preventive care services
without charging participants any deductible, copayment, or similar cost-sharing
amount. The Regulations apply to plan years beginning on and after September
23, 2010. For calendar year plans, the rules take effect January 1, 2011.
These preventive care services are specified in guidelines issued by federal
governmental health agencies and are quite lengthy. This eActionAlert is
an overview of the regulations and also provides a link to the full text
of the Guidelines. We strongly urge all our readers to review the detailed
information. Simply click here.
22, 2010 - When Does a Health & Welfare Plan
Lose its “Grandfathered” Status?
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Labor and Treasury
have issued interim and final regulations for group health plans and health
insurance coverage relating to status as a grandfathered health plan under
the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (P.L. 111-148). The regulations,
which also call for comment, were published in the June 17 Federal Register
and have been synthesized for easy reading. To read the entire article
click on the title.
March 30, 2010 - Post Script to the eActionAlert dated
March 24, 2010
We have welcome news for employers with existing group health
plans. After a detailed examination of both the Patient Protection and
Affordable Care Act (HR 3590, a.k.a. the “health care reform bill”) and
the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010 (HR 4872, a.k.a.
the “fix it bill”), we have confirmed that existing group health plans
are ‘grandfathered’ from having to make several of the changes identified
in our Alert dated March 24, 2010. To read this entire article,
click on the title above.
24, 2010 - The Landmark Health Care Reform Bill
On March 23, 2010,
President Obama signed into law the bill (HR3590) originally passed by
the Senate on December 24, 2009 and approved by the House on March 21,
2010. Later that Sunday night the House also passed the reconciliation
bill (HR4872). That bill (HR 4872) has now moved to the Senate for the
"reconciliation" process. It must receive 51 "yes" votes
in the Senate to pass. Although passage is not certain, it is expected.
Once that is done, the implementation process will begin; a process that
will take several years. The financial impact of this legislation will
be significant and tax increases will almost certainly be required to provide
the necessary funding. To read this entire article, click on
the title above.
Our first order of business was to bring you up to date
on the changes that are likely to survive the reconciliation process. You
can expect additional updates from us as events unfold. To read this entire
article, click on the title above.
28, 2010 - Self Reporting of Single Employer Welfare Plan Compliance
Employers need to know that the formalization of the self-reporting
of compliance failures became effective January 1, 2010. This means that
all group health plan sponsors are now required to assess their compliance
with COBRA, HIPAA and other regulations and report compliance failures
to the IRS. Failure to do so carries significant penalties. Because this
is such a significant issue, we’ve prepared a comprehensive chart to help
our clients assess the impact on their companies. Additional information
can be found in the forms available at the websites listed at the end of
the Chart. To read this entire article, click on the title above.