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Podcast Episode 114: OSHA’s Guidance (ETS) on Employer COVID-19 Vaccine and Testing Mandate

November 09, 2021

In this episode, Chase Cannon and Suzanne Spradley break down the recent OSHA guidance (emergency temporary standard, or ETS) relating to the employer COVID-19 vaccine and testing mandate. Chase outlines the general requirement for employers with 100 or more employees to ensure employees are vaccinated or tested regularly. Suzanne and Chase discuss legal challenges to the ETS guidance at the federal and state level. The two outline the ETS requirements relating to counting employees, vaccination policies, proof of vaccination status, alternative testing, employee notification and penalties. The two close by discussing some practical planning tips, and the importance of engaging outside counsel to assist with mandate compliance.

Every other week, NFP's legal experts make the subject of compliance personal for a wide audience. By breaking down the daunting details of emerging policies and bridging the gap between legislation and what it means for the listener, Chase Cannon and Suzanne Spradley make compliance issues relatable and relevant. Visit our Soundcloud page every two weeks for the most up-to-date episode.

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November Get Wise Wednesdays – Register Now

November 09, 2021

As 2021 comes to an end, there are still a number of benefits compliance issues that are being impacted by COVID-19. Join us for a discussion of the government guidance that we received during the pandemic. We will discuss guidance that has expired, such as paid leave under the FFCRA and COBRA premium assistance under ARPA; temporary guidance soon to expire, such as mid-year election change relief, exemption of telehealth services for purposes of HSA-eligibility and the increased DCAP exclusion. We will also provide reminders concerning employers’ ongoing compliance obligations related to COVID-19.

We’re Still in the Outbreak Period: End-of-Year COVID-19 Benefits Compliance Considerations
November 17, 2021
2:00 to 3:00 p.m. CT (3:00 to 4:00 p.m. ET)

Register Now

A recording will be posted to the NFP Webinars Page within 48 hours of the live webinar. Those listening to a recorded webinar aren’t eligible for recertification credit.

All programs are pending approval for 1.0 (general) recertification credit hour toward PHR, SPHR and GPHR recertification through the HR Certification Institute. For more information about certification or recertification, visit the HR Certification Institute website at hrci.org.

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Podcast Episode 113: HIPAA Violations and Recent Enforcement Actions

October 26, 2021

In this episode, Suzanne Spradley and Patrick Myers discuss the growing trend of HIPAA breaches, particularly those that involve ransomware attacks and employee errors. Suzanne points out how the pandemic and the increased use of telehealth encouraged a growing reliance on electronic transmission and data. Suzanne and Patrick discuss HIPAA privacy law, recent updates to the law, its notification requirements and the Health Risk Assessment requirement. Finally, the two close by discussing enforcement actions, penalties and common violations that result in fines imposed by the federal government.

Every other week, NFP's legal experts make the subject of compliance personal for a wide audience. By breaking down the daunting details of emerging policies and bridging the gap between legislation and what it means for the listener, Chase Cannon and Suzanne Spradley make compliance issues relatable and relevant. Visit our Soundcloud page every two weeks for the most up-to-date episode.

Subscribe on iTunesListen on Google Play Music

Read More

November Get Wise Wednesdays – Register Now

October 26, 2021

As 2021 comes to an end, there are still a number of benefits compliance issues that are being impacted by COVID-19. Join us for a discussion of the government guidance that we received during the pandemic. We will discuss guidance that has expired, such as paid leave under the FFCRA and COBRA premium assistance under ARPA; temporary guidance soon to expire, such as mid-year election change relief, exemption of telehealth services for purposes of HSA-eligibility and the increased DCAP exclusion; as well as provide reminders concerning employers’ ongoing compliance obligations related to COVID-19.

We’re Still In the Outbreak Period: End-of-Year COVID-19 Benefits Compliance Considerations
November 17, 2021
2:00 to 3:00 p.m. CT (3:00 to 4:00 p.m. ET)

Register Now

A recording will be posted to the NFP Webinars Page within 48 hours of the live webinar. Those listening to a recorded webinar aren’t eligible for recertification credit.

All programs are pending approval for 1.0 (general) recertification credit hour toward PHR, SPHR and GPHR recertification through the HR Certification Institute. For more information about certification or recertification, visit the HR Certification Institute website at hrci.org.

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Updated CHIP Notice Available

October 26, 2021

On October 15, 2021, the DOL updated its Premium Assistance Under Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) model notice that employers with group health plans may use to notify eligible employees about premium assistance available through their state Medicaid or CHIP. The DOL regularly updates the notice to reflect any changes to the list of states offering premium assistance programs.

The latest updated notice includes changes to the program contact information for Massachusetts and Virginia compared to the previous January 31, 2021, version.

Employers creating their own notices, rather than using the DOL’s model notice, should pay special attention to ensure the most recent information is used. Employees residing in any of the states identified on the notice must receive this information automatically, before the start of the plan year, and free of charge.

Updated CHIP Notice »

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Podcast Episode 111: Vaccine Mandate/Surcharge Updates and COVID-Related Notices for Open Enrollment

October 12, 2021

In this episode, Chase Cannon and Patrick Myers provide an update on vaccine mandates and surcharges, including some helpful governmental guidance on HIPAA wellness program rule application to vaccine surcharges. Chase then digs in on some end-of-year and open enrollment considerations for pandemic-related compliance obligations. Chase and Patrick discuss the mandatory and optional plan design changes and what employers should consider communicating to employees during open enrollment. The two close by addressing the temporary telehealth exception relating to HSA eligibility, currently set to expire at the end of the 2021 plan year, and whether we can expect any Congressional extension.

Every other week, NFP's legal experts make the subject of compliance personal for a wide audience. By breaking down the daunting details of emerging policies and bridging the gap between legislation and what it means for the listener, Chase Cannon and Suzanne Spradley make compliance issues relatable and relevant. Visit our Soundcloud page every two weeks for the most up-to-date episode.

Subscribe on iTunesListen on Google Play Music

Read More

October Get Wise Wednesdays – Register Now

October 12, 2021

The Transparency in Coverage final rule and the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021, both passed in late 2020, have imposed significant new compliance obligations upon group health plan sponsors. Join us as we discuss compliance considerations under these recent federal laws. We will begin the presentation with an overview of the transparency requirements, including data disclosures and cost-sharing tools required, along with their applicable effective dates. We will then discuss the No Surprises Act, which imposes surprise billing prohibitions and additional transparency and disclosure requirements. We will also review subsequent regulatory guidance regarding the implementation and enforcement of these provisions. By the end of this presentation, participants should better understand compliance obligations related to these new requirements and action items for group health plan sponsors.

Transparency and No Surprises Act: Compliance Considerations for Group Health Plans
October 20, 2021
2:00 to 3:00 p.m. CT (3:00 to 4:00 p.m. ET)

Register Now

A recording will be posted to the NFP Webinars Page within 48 hours of the live webinar. Those listening to a recorded webinar aren’t eligible for recertification credit.

All programs are pending approval for 1.0 (general) recertification credit hour toward PHR, SPHR and GPHR recertification through the HR Certification Institute. For more information about certification or recertification, visit the HR Certification Institute website at hrci.org.

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Reminder: Medicare Part D Notice to Employees Deadline Is October 14, 2021

October 12, 2021

Employers must notify individuals who are eligible to participate in their medical plan whether the plan’s prescription drug coverage is “creditable” or “non-creditable” as compared to Medicare Part D coverage.

As a reminder, the Medicare Part D notice of creditable coverage should be distributed to employees by October 14, 2021. This notice serves to inform Medicare-eligible individuals of whether or not their employer group coverage is creditable. That information is necessary to help such individuals avoid paying higher premiums (also known as late enrollment penalties) for Medicare Part D coverage.

Employers should consult with their service providers to determine whether their coverage is creditable using either the simplified determination method or actuarial analysis. Also, keep in mind that CMS provides a model notice for employers.

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Reminder: Medicare Part D Notice to Employees Deadline Is October 14, 2021

September 28, 2021

Employers must notify individuals who are eligible to participate in their medical plan whether the plan’s prescription drug coverage is “creditable” or “non-creditable” as compared to Medicare Part D coverage.

As a reminder, the Medicare Part D notice of creditable coverage should be distributed to employees by October 14, 2021. This notice serves to inform Medicare-eligible individuals of whether or not their employer group coverage is creditable. That information is necessary to help such individuals avoid paying higher premiums (also known as late enrollment penalties) for Medicare Part D coverage.

Employers should consult with their service providers to determine whether their coverage is creditable using either the simplified determination method or an actuarial analysis. Also keep in mind that CMS provides a model notice for employers.

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Podcast Episode 110: Potential Legal Challenges to Biden’s Vaccine Mandates

September 28, 2021

In this episode, Chase Cannon and Suzanne Spradley discuss the history of, and legal challenges to, OSHA's Emergency Temporary Standards (ETS), the format for the Biden administration’s recently announced vaccine mandate and COVID-19 testing alternative for employers. Suzanne begins with an overview of the likely legal challenges to the use of the ETS process, the historical use of OSHA's ETS instead of the standard rule-making process and prior court rulings that generally did not support the use of the ETS. Suzanne and Chase review the questions that will likely be raised considering the prior COVID-19-related ETS limited to healthcare workers and evidence that may be used to support a more expansive ETS.

Every other week, NFP's legal experts make the subject of compliance personal for a wide audience. By breaking down the daunting details of emerging policies and bridging the gap between legislation and what it means for the listener, Chase Cannon and Suzanne Spradley make compliance issues relatable and relevant. Visit our Soundcloud page every two weeks for the most up-to-date episode.

Subscribe on iTunesListen on Google Play Music

Read More

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