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Karen McLeese

Karen McLeese
Updates: Washington Paid Family and Medical Leave Program

March 5, 2020 By Karen McLeese

Updates: Washington Paid Family and Medical Leave Program

The state of Washington enacted a Paid Family and Medical Leave law in 2017. Funding for the law began in 2019 and paid leave benefits began January 1, 2020.   The law was amended last year to clarify certain provisions relating to an employee’s ability to supplement PFML benefits, the waiting period, and matters relating to the voluntary plan.

The Plan Document is the Rule Book

March 5, 2020 By Karen McLeese

The Plan Document is the Rule Book

A recent IRS Information Letter discusses a situation relating to mid-year election change requested by a plan participant of a dependent care assistance plan, and whether the plan should allow such election change. 

Update: EEO-1 Report

March 5, 2020 By Karen McLeese

Update: EEO-1 Report

A District Court has determined that the collection of Component 2 data, consisting of salary information reported on employees’ W-2, together with hours worked, for EEO-1 reporting purposes for calendar years 2017 and 2018 has been completed.  The Court decision does not, however, affect the continued obligation to collect of Component 1 data on the EEO-1 report, which captures employee counts by race and gender.

Potential Impact of Coronavirus on the Workplace

March 5, 2020 By Karen McLeese

Potential Impact of Coronavirus on the Workplace

As everyone surely knows as this point, the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) could potentially create challenges for employers in the near term.  Several federal agencies including the Centers for Disease Control and the DOL’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration have begun issuing guidance for employers.  In addition, existing leaves of absence laws, together with internal employment policies, should be reviewed as they relate to absences from work due to care or treatment of a serious health condition.

Paid Sick Leave Updates in the Garden State and City of Chicago

February 11, 2020 By Karen McLeese

Paid Sick Leave Updates in the Garden State and City of Chicago

Final regulations have been issued affecting the earned sick leave law in New Jersey.  In addition, the City of Chicago’s paid sick leave ordinance has undergone some amendments.

HCSO Updates and Reminders for San Francisco Employers

February 11, 2020 By Karen McLeese

HCSO Updates and Reminders for San Francisco Employers

Employers in San Francisco who are subject to the City’s health care security ordinance have several obligations, including an annual reporting and workplace posting obligation.  In addition, the enforcing agency of the ordinance released a tool for calculating expenditure rates in self-funded health plans.

Updated Tax Publications to Assist Employers

February 11, 2020 By Karen McLeese

Updated Tax Publications to Assist Employers

Several IRS publications have recently been updated for use in 2020 that may be of interest to employers.  Of particular note, the IRS provides three types of employer tax guides to assist in determining tax treatment of wages and benefits, and a publication to assist in determining what types of medical and dental expenses are reimbursable from plans such as flexible medical spending accounts and health savings accounts.

HHS Further Adjusts Penalties for Compliance Failures

February 11, 2020 By Karen McLeese

HHS Further Adjusts Penalties for Compliance Failures

Due to changes in the law and indexing, the Department of Health and Human Services further adjusted its civil penalty amounts from those issued two months ago.  These include potential violations of the HIPAA privacy, security and breach laws, failure to provide an SBC, and failure to comply with certain aspects of the Medicare secondary payor rules.

2020 Inflationary Adjustments to Certain Reporting and Disclosure Failures

February 11, 2020 By Karen McLeese

2020 Inflationary Adjustments to Certain Reporting and Disclosure Failures

Failure to abide by certain reporting and disclosure obligations, such as the failure to provide an SBC or the Medicaid/CHIP notice, or file the Form 5500 or M-1, or display the FMLA workplace poster, could result in civil penalties assessed by agencies of the Department of Labor.  The potential penalties for these compliance failures, which undergo periodic adjustment, have been increased.

Updated Medicaid/CHIP Premium Assistance Notice

February 10, 2020 By Karen McLeese

Updated Medicaid/CHIP Premium Assistance Notice

Individuals who are eligible for employer-sponsored group health coverage, but are unable to afford the premium, may be eligible to receive premium assistance from a state’s Medicaid agency or Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). Thus, employers sponsoring health plans are obligated to annually provide a premium assistance notice to their workforce. This notification can be accomplished by using a model notice provided by the Department of Labor’s Employee Benefit Security Administration.  The model Medicaid/CHIP notice has been revised due to changes in program and contact information of various state agencies, and made current as of January 31, 2020.

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