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Benefits Buzz

Benefits Buzz December 2017

Did You Know?

According to the annual Kaiser Family Foundation and the Health Research & Educational Trust employer health benefits survey, over half of large employers have embraced telemedicine, with 63% offering health care services through this method.

Of these employers, 33 percent offer financial incentives to receive health care services this way, as opposed to an in-person physician visit.

Benefits Buzz November 2017

Did You Know?

The average premium for employer-sponsored health insurance was $6,690 for single coverage and $18,764 for family coverage in 2017.

Those figures are up 4 percent and 3 percent, respectively, from last year.

Contact your Hummel Group representative to discuss strategies for reducing premium costs.


Benefits Buzz October 2017

Did You Know?

A federal judge struck down the Department of Labor's (DOL) overtime rule, which would have raised the Fair Labor Standards Act minimum salary threshold from $23,660 to $47,476.

Based on the court's ruling, the DOL will need to present a more reasonable salary threshold if it wishes to pass any future overtime rules.  This means employers should continue operating as usual, but they should be aware that an increase is possible down the road.

Benefits Buzz September 2017

Did You Know?

On July 28, 2017, the Department of Treasury announced that it will be shutting down the my Retirement Account (myRA) program.  The program was put in place by former President Barack Obama as a means to help those who did not have access to a retirement account at work to save for retirement.

Jovita Carranza, the United States Treasurer, explained that the program is being discontinued because it cost too much compared to the demand for the accounts.

Benefits Buzz July 2017

Did You Know?

On May 5, 2017, the IRS issued Revenue Procedure 2017-36 to index the contribution percentages in 2018 for purposes of determining affordability of an employer's plan under the ACA.  These updated affordability percentages are effective for taxable years and plan years beginning Jan. 1, 2018.

Benefits Buzz June 2017

Did You Know?

Generally, wellness incentives are subject to the same federal tax rules as any other employee rewards or prizes.

Cash and cash equivalents (for example, a $100 gift card for taking a health risk assessment) are always taxable.

Another taxable example is an employer's payment of gym or health club membership fees, unless the membership qualifies as medical care.


Benefits Buzz April 2017

Did You Know?

In late February 2017, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) extended an existing transition policy for certain health plans that do not comply with the Affordable Care Act (ACA) for an additional year, to policy years beginning on or before Oct. 1, 2018.

During this transition period, health coverage in the individual or small group market that meets certain criteria will not be considered to be out of compliance with the ACA's market reforms.

Benefits Buzz March 2017

Did You Know?

Becoming health care literate can be complicated.  Knowing your benefits and their costs can be a daunting task for anyone.

In fact, being health care literate might be even harder than you think.