Employer Health and Welfare Plan

During the next several weeks, we will publish a series of articles that dive deeply into “health plan hygiene” relating to health and welfare benefit plan fiduciary issues and how employers can protect themselves in this quickly evolving area.

Section 408(b)(2) of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) requires certain disclosures regarding

When an employee is on an extended leave of absence, there is often confusion regarding whether and to what extent the employer must continue to provide coverage to the employee under the employer-provided health plan.  To determine whether coverage is required, the employer should consider the terms of the plan, COBRA requirements, and whether the

Background

Section 1557 is the non-discrimination provision of the Affordable Care Act (ACA).  Section 1557, which has been in effect since 2010, is intended to prevent discrimination in certain health programs or activities that receive federal financial assistance.   In May of 2024, the Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) Office of Civil Rights

To all those who work in the employee benefits arena, whether in legal, finance, benefits administration, payroll, tax, human resources, or many other disciplines, this is our annual reminder to celebrate the valuable and important work done for employees, beneficiaries, and Plan Sponsors alike.

This year, we focus on the increased attention on all things

It’s hard to believe that 2024 is well underway! That means it’s a perfect time to think about an issue that might get lost in the summertime and (dare I already say) year-end shuffles: fiduciary committees.

ERISA imposes fiduciary duties on those considered a fiduciary under an ERISA-covered plan. Generally, absent a delegation, the board

A recent Alabama Supreme Court case, LaPage v. Center for Reproductive Medicine, has made headlines and raised questions about the legal implications of providing in vitro fertilization (IVF) benefits.  During IVF, eggs are fertilized outside the body to create an embryo, and in the case at hand, the parents sued after several embryos were

America’s cultural wars may be opening up a new front, and group health plans may be caught in the fray. Since the US Supreme Court decision in Dobbs ended almost fifty years of constitutional protection for abortion rights and gave states the authority to regulate abortion, lawmakers (or citizens) have either enacted new prohibitions on

Transgender protections and rights in the workplace are currently the subject of much confusion.  This issue extends to employer-sponsored health plans.  Whether an employer-sponsored health plan must cover gender-affirming care is complicated and depends, in part, on whether the employer’s health plan is fully-insured or self-insured. 

Fully-Insured Plans

Fully-insured employer-sponsored health plans are subject to

High-stress, demanding retail positions where constant customer demands are front and center can leave employees feeling overwhelmed and burnt out, resulting in lower productivity and higher turnover for employers.

Increasing societal awareness of mental health issues, and a general push by employees to recognize their lives outside of the workplace, has fueled a growing call

We previously wrote about President Biden’s announcement to end the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency (PHE) and National Emergency (NE) periods on May 11, 2023, and the practical ramifications for employer group health plan sponsors as they administer COBRA, special enrollment, and other related deadlines tied to the end of the NE. As discussed, this action