Health Reform Archive

  • ACA subsidy issues hurting broker credibility

    July 23, 2014

    In another blow to the health law’s federal subsidies this week, the GAO says fake application information successfully yielded subsidy payouts in an undercover investigation. One broker says if consumers are able to obtain subsidies in circumstances where they shouldn’t, they’re not going to trust brokers who tell them the truth.

  • Brokers must work for carrier commissions on ACA exchanges

    July 23, 2014

    As some brokers continue to wait for their payments, it seems no one carrier is better or worse at this issue across the U.S. What is clear is that advisers who previously worked in group need to learn a new system to track and monitor commissions.

  • Employers won’t feel immediate sting from federal court ACA subsidy ruling

    July 22, 2014

    In another blow to President Barack Obama’s signature legislation, a three-judge panel on the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled in favor of the plaintiff, declaring the law’s premium subsidies are invalid in more than two dozen states due to the law’s specific language.

  • ACA subsidies on federal exchange overturned

    July 22, 2014

    President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul suffered a potentially crippling blow as a U.S. appeals court ruled the government can’t give financial assistance to anyone buying coverage on the insurance marketplace run by federal authorities.

  • Post-Hobby Lobby: DOL requires employee notification of dropped contraceptive coverage

    July 21, 2014

    The DOL says employers reacting to the Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby ruling by canceling contraceptive coverage will be required to notify their employees of the change, an important administrative note for benefit advisers working with employers electing to do so.

  • Employers continue to shift health care cost burden to employees

    July 18, 2014

    With health care costs continuing to rise, it’s no surprise to benefit advisers that their employer clients continue to seek benefit solutions that shift some of the cost burden to their employees — and new data reveals that trend shows no signs of stopping.

  • ACA, data security create regulatory hurdles for employers

    July 17, 2014

    While employers are continuing to feel the impact from a multitude of changing laws and regulations, worries about the Affordable Care Act have begun to subside, to some degree. But the jury is out on the long-term implications of the ACA, and the ways benefits managers will live up to its stipulations in coming years.

  • Time’s up: Are your clients compliant with new wellness and mental health benefits parity laws?

    July 17, 2014

    Benefit advisers working with employers offering medical plans — take note. Two important final regulations issued jointly by the IRS, DOL and HHS apply to plan years beginning on or after July 1, 2014. Are your clients compliant?

  • 'Messy' future ahead for health care market

    July 17, 2014

    A boom in private exchanges and a changing distribution system for health care will create a new landscape for benefits managers and advisers, with more emphasis on consumer-directed health care.

  • CA insurance rate ballot measure could become countrywide concern

    July 17, 2014

    A proposal up for vote in the most populous state would give the insurance commissioner veto power over health insurance rates, among other things, and has brokers fearful of the trend spreading to other states.

  • More than 10 million sought ACA enrollment help outside of brokers

    July 15, 2014

    Millions of Americans sought help from navigators and assisters during the ACA's first open-enrollment period, but many were more satisfied with help from a benefit adviser.

  • Some brokers still not paid on ACA exchanges

    July 11, 2014

    The status of payments to brokers for their work signing up consumers across the nation varies from state to state and broker to broker, with some missing nearly 50% of commissions and others reporting no problems whatsoever.

  • House to sue Obama over ACA’s employer mandate delay

    July 11, 2014

    The U.S. House of Representatives will sue President Barack Obama’s administration over delaying the implementation of an employer health insurance mandate in the Affordable Care Act.

  • Hobby Lobby likely not 'defining moment' for ACA compliance

    July 10, 2014

    For most employers, the Hobby Lobby decision will have little impact, meaning they will have to comply with the ACA as written. Looking for loopholes can be risky, not just for ACA compliance but also for ERISA compliance, generally.

  • Expanded coverage under ACA means more work for advisers, little extra pay

    July 10, 2014

    Millions more Americans have gained coverage as a result of the health reform law, increasing the workload for benefit advisers, but not necessarily the compensation they receive.

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