United Benefit Advisors Insight and Analysis Blog

FDA Releases Proposed Rule on the Importation of Certain Drugs from Canada

Posted by: Matthew Meidell    Feb 18, 2020 11:33:04 AM

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) released a proposed rule on the importation of certain drugs from Canada.

Read More

Topics: prescription drugs, compliance recap, FDA

Battle Tips to Win the War for Talent

Posted by: Bill Olson    Feb 13, 2020 7:45:00 AM

In the late 2000s, major headlines concerning the economy and jobs were usually related to unemployment. Qualified people might struggle to get an interview or retain a position in a volatile job market. This was especially true for millennials graduating college at the height of the most recent financial recession in 2008. But unemployment is at a historic low here in the new decade, so it’s no longer the employee struggling to find a good fit—it’s the employer.

Read More

Topics: workplace culture, employee benefit plans, HR Elements, attracting talent

Beat the Winter Blues with These Helpful Tips

Posted by: Bill Olson    Feb 11, 2020 3:45:00 PM

With February’s arrival, we find ourselves in the midst of the winter doldrums: the holidays are far in the rearview mirror, the once-exciting sight of falling snow has lost its charm, and it feels like it's been ages since we’ve felt the sun.

Read More

Topics: wellness, exercise, healthy eating, health, outdoors

Status of Court Case Challenging ACA Constitutionality

Posted by: Karen Hsu    Feb 6, 2020 7:15:00 AM

As background, in 2018, 20 states filed a lawsuit asking the U.S. District for the Northern District of Texas (District Court) to strike down the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) entirely. The lawsuit came after the U.S. Congress passed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 (TCJA) that reduced the individual mandate penalty to $0, starting in 2019.

Read More

Topics: ACA, compliance recap, Tax Cuts, TCJA, Constitutionality

The Potential of Pay Transparency

Posted by: Bill Olson    Feb 4, 2020 10:40:10 AM

In the not-too-distant past, an individual’s salary was a topic to be avoided. Bringing it up in the break room or at a dinner party was a major faux pas, almost taboo. But today, many HR departments are implementing more pay transparency into their policies—some even going as far as posting every employee’s salary. 

Read More

Topics: HR Elements, Pay Scale, Pay Transparency, Retention

President Signs Further Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2020

Posted by: Karen Hsu    Jan 31, 2020 7:36:00 AM

On December 20, 2019, President Trump signed the Further Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2020 (Act) to keep the federal government running through September 2020. The Act significantly affects provisions under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), largely though one fee extension and the repeal of three taxes.

Read More

Topics: FMLA, ACA, Consolidated Appropriations Act, compliance recap

Aligning with the C-Suite Agenda

Posted by: Bill Olson    Jan 28, 2020 7:30:00 AM

If your CEO’s Gmail calendar looks more like a colorful bar graph than a few simple meetings, it can be difficult to capture and retain their attention. Your “C-suite” (CIOs, CEOs, CTOs, CMOs, CFOs, etc.) have a lot of responsibility placed on their shoulders and are likely involved in many key decisions throughout the day. They are often pulled in many directions as managers and directors try to get buy-in for their next program or initiative. In such a fast-paced environment where each minute matters, how can you be efficient and get the latest and greatest programs off the ground? 

Read More

Topics: C-Suite, HR Elements, Organizational Psychology

HHS Releases Inflation-Adjusted Federal Civil Penalty Amounts

Posted by: Karen Hsu    Jan 23, 2020 12:45:00 PM

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued its Annual Civil Monetary Penalties Inflation Adjustment. Here are some of the adjustments:

Read More

Topics: HHS, HIPAA, Medicare, compliance recap

Implications of California’s AB 5 for I-9 for Managers and Employees in 2020

Posted by: Bill Olson    Jan 21, 2020 7:30:00 AM

I-9 compliance is fundamental for an HR team when onboarding new employees. Its primary function is to verify the identity and employment authorization of individuals hired in the United States. All U.S. employers must ensure proper completion of Form I-9 for each individual they hire for employment in the United States. I-9 becomes more complicated with the new addition of California’s Assembly Bill 5 (AB 5), which deals primarily with an employee’s hiring status. Under current federal immigration law, independent contractors do not have to be in compliance with I-9. However, with the addition of AB 5, if those contractors are classed as employees their path to compliance will change.

Read More

Topics: employee vs independent contractor, HR Elements, 2020

CMS Releases SBC Materials for Plan Years Beginning 2021

Posted by: Karen Hsu    Jan 16, 2020 7:46:00 AM

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released SBC materials and supporting documents including a template SBC, sample completed SBC, uniform glossary, instructions, and guidance for plan or policy years beginning on or after January 1, 2021. 

Read More

Topics: Medicaid, SBC, CMS, Medicare coverage, compliance recap