Health and Welfare

Industry & Regulatory News
IRS Guidance Affects Employment Taxes and COBRA Premium Subsidy

The IRS issued Notice 2021-24, which provides guidance following the passage of the American Rescue Plan of 2021 (ARPA). The Notice provides information regarding the applicable penalty relief available to an employer under the ARPA for failing to pay employment taxes in anticipation of a credit for COBRA premium assistance paid to assistance-eligible individuals.

May 07 2021
Industry & Regulatory News
DOL Withdraws Independent Contractor Rule

The Department of Labor (DOL) Wage and Hour Division is withdrawing the independent contractor rule that was scheduled to take effect on May 7, 2021. The rule had previously been delayed from its original effective date of March 7, 2021. The withdrawal of the rule is scheduled to be published in the Federal Register May 6, 2021.

May 06 2021
Industry & Regulatory News
DOL Issues Additional COBRA Premium Assistance Guidance Under ARPA

In response to the requirements under the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARPA) to provide model notices and additional guidance in relation to COBRA premium assistance, the Department of Labor has issued model notices and frequently asked questions (FAQs). The FAQs confirm the following.

April 07 2021
Industry & Regulatory News
Washington Pulse: American Rescue Plan Act Provides Coronavirus Relief

President Biden has signed legislation that funds another round of assistance as the nation copes with the health and economic effects of the coronavirus pandemic. Several previous bills in 2020 provided direct cash benefits to Americans, created a small business lending program to help employers retain employees, and provided enhanced access to tax-favored retirement savings.

March 12 2021
Industry & Regulatory News
Latest Pandemic Relief Legislation Signed Into Law

President Biden has signed into law the American Rescue Plan Act one day after the House of Representatives voted to pass the amended package. Several provisions directly affect tax-advantaged savings arrangements.

March 11 2021
Industry & Regulatory News
House Passes Amended COVID-19 Relief Bill; President to Sign

Following Senate passage on Saturday, the House of Representatives has passed by a vote of 220-211 the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 to provide additional relief to address the continued impact of COVID-19. Included in the package are several items that would affect retirement and health benefits.

March 10 2021
Industry & Regulatory News
DOL Delays Effective Date for Independent Contractor Final Regulations

Consistent with a directive by President Biden in a January 20, 2021-issued memorandum entitled, “Regulatory Freeze Pending Review,” the Department of Labor (DOL) Wage and Hour Division has finalized its proposal to delay until May 7, 2021, the effective date of final regulations on independent contractor status. The regulations were published January 7, 2021, in the Federal Register. Their intended purpose as described by the DOL was to clarify distinctions between employee and independent contractor status in employment situations.

March 04 2021
Industry & Regulatory News
Guidance Issued for Group Health Plans Regarding Coverage of COVID-19 Services

The Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and Treasury (the Departments) have issued "FAQs About Families First Coronavirus Response Act and Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act Implementation Part 44" (the FAQs).

March 02 2021
Industry & Regulatory News
House Passes COVID-19 Relief Bill

The House of Representatives has passed by a vote of 219-212 the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 to provide additional relief to address the continued impact of COVID-19. Noteworthy retirement and health provisions include the following.

March 01 2021
Industry & Regulatory News
COVID-19 Relief for Employee Benefit Plans, Participants, and Beneficiaries Continued for Limited Time

The Department of Labor’s (DOL) Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) has released Disaster Relief Notice 2021-01 providing guidance on the duration of COVID-19-related relief previously provided by Disaster Relief Notice 2020-01 and the Notice of Extension of Certain Timeframes for Employee Benefit Plans, Participants, and Beneficiaries Affected by the COVID-19 Outbreak (Joint Notice) issued in 2020 by the DOL, Treasury Department, and the IRS (collectively the "Notices").

March 01 2021