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Stephanie O. ZornBlog Posts

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  • Self-Insured Health Plans: August 1st PCORI Fee Due Date is Rapidly Approaching

    The Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (“PCORI”) is an independent nonprofit research organization that funds comparative clinical research, among other things.  PCORI is funded through annual fees — provided for in the Affordable Care Act — paid by insurers of fully-insured health plans and sponsors of self-insured health plans, including health reimbursement arrangements (“HRAs”) that are...
    July 14, 2022
  • Fifth Circuit: Remand to Determine Disability was Not a “Second Bite at the Apple” for Insurer

    In Newsom v. Reliance Standard Life Insurance Company, 2022 U.S. App. LEXIS 4505 (5th Cir. Feb. 18, 2022), the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit clarified the difference between an eligibility determination and a disability determination for disability benefits. James Newsom worked as a software architect for Lereta. He had a series... Continue Reading
    March 9, 2022
  • It’s Almost the End of 2021. Do You Know Where Your Healthcare Dollars Go?

    The CAA Transparency Rules Will Let Plans and Participants Know.  The Department of Labor, Health and Human Services, and the IRS (collectively the Departments) recently released the Interim Final Rules with a request for Comment (IFC), Prescription Drug and Health Care Spending.  These rules implement Section 204, Title II, another phase of the transparency provisions...
    December 10, 2021
  • Eighth Circuit: Procedural Irregularity Not a “Gateway” to De Novo Review of Administrator’s Decision to Deny Benefits

    In McIntyre v. Reliance Standard Life Insurance Company, 972 F.3d 955 (8th Cir. 2020), the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit clarified the standard of review to apply where there has been a denial of benefits challenged under ERISA Section 502(a)(1)(B). Generally, a court reviews a denial of benefits under a de... Continue Reading
    November 15, 2021
  • Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021: Employer-Sponsored Retirement Plans

    The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 generally provides the annual funding for the federal government and also contains several important rules giving further COVID-19 relief. The comprehensive relief package funds certain hard-hit industries, expands eligibility for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), and extends and expands the Employee Retention Tax Credit. The Act also relaxes several normally... Continue Reading…
    December 28, 2020
  • Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021: Employer-Sponsored Retirement Plans

    The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 generally provides the annual funding for the federal government and also contains several important rules giving further COVID-19 relief. The comprehensive relief package funds certain hard-hit industries, expands eligibility for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), and extends and expands the Employee Retention Tax Credit. The Act also relaxes several normally...… Continue Reading
    December 28, 2020
  • When to Amend: Deadline for Compliance with Hardship Distribution Regulations Clarified

    The Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018 and the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 liberalized the hardship distribution rules applicable to 401(k) and 403(b) plans. On September 23, 2019, the IRS issued final regulations — which we discussed in a previous blog — implementing the new hardship distribution rules. While some of the new...… Continue Reading
    December 22, 2019
  • To Withhold or Not to Withhold on Pension Distributions: A New Proposed Regulation Clarifies Obligations

    On May 31, the IRS issued a proposed regulation — presented in Q & A format — concerning income tax withholding obligations on non-rollover distributions from employer-sponsored plans — including pension, annuity, profit sharing, stock bonus and any other deferred compensation plan — to destinations outside the U.S. Unlike U.S. payees, non-U.S. payees cannot elect...… Continue Reading
    June 2, 2019
  • Is Your Employer Worksite Medical Clinic a Group Health Plan?

    Worksite medical clinics, some offering round-the-clock access to medical providers via telemedicine, seem to be growing in popularity.  Promoters tout cost savings resulting from what would otherwise be lost productivity (employees whiling away afternoons waiting to see their private doctors or having to drive long distances to have blood drawn for routine laboratory work) and...… Continue Reading
    April 28, 2019
  • Notice 2018-76: Taking a Bite Out of the Business Expense Deductions for Meals, Entertainment

    On October 3, 2018, the IRS issued transitional guidance in Notice 2018-76 concerning the business expense deductions for meals and entertainment following the changes made by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (“TCJA”) — which generally disallowed a deduction for expenses related to entertainment, amusement or recreation, but did not specifically address the deductibility of...… Continue Reading
    October 7, 2018

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