DOL's Report to Congress on Self-Insured Group Health Plans

In March 2018, the DOL issued its annual report to Congress related to self-insured group health plans. The report is based on data filed on the Forms 5500 (through 2015). The first such report was provided to Congress in March 2011.

Approximately 54,500 group health plans filed a Form 5500 in 2015, which is up 6 percent over 2014. Of those, 22,900 were self-insured, covering a total of 34 million participants with $84 billion in plan assets. Another 3,900 were mixed insured (including both fully insured and self-insured coverages) covering a total of 26 million participants with $135 billion in plan assets.

Interestingly, 1,100 of the self-insured plans were multiemployer plans (and 500 of the mixed insurance plans). The majority of self-insured and mixed insured plans are funded through general assets versus a trust.

Currently, small self-insured unfunded plans are exempt from filing a Form 5500 (along with small fully insured plans, church plans and governmental plans). The DOL estimates that in 2015 there were 2.2 million small self-insured plans. The report discusses the DOL's 2016 proposal to require ERISA plans of all sizes to file a Form 5500. Further, self-insured plans would be required to submit information regarding stop-loss coverage premiums and attachment points. The DOL states that this would "significantly enhance the department's ability to describe the full universe of self-insured plans and how they compare to fully-insured health plans."

DOL Report »