Affordable Care Act (ACA)

Looking for an Alternative to a Group Health Plan?

Cardinal Services Now Offers a QSEHRA Plan Oregon employers now have another option to assist employees in paying for health coverage and other medical expenses. This new coverage option is called a Qualified Small Employer Health Reimbursement Arrangement. The catchy acronym, QSEHRA, is sometimes pronounced by saying the letter Q followed up with the name Sarah. While the original plan was rolled out at the national level in 2016, it took Oregon some time to […]

Legislative Alert: Employer Penalty for Employees Enrolled in Oregon Health Plan

The Oregon House of Representatives recently introduced House Bill 4105 which would require employers to pay a monetary penalty if an employee enrolls in the Oregon Health Plan (OHP). The OHP extends Medicare to more people than the federal law requires; this is a legacy of a former governor trying to be innovative in delivering better health care to more of those in need. The OHP is a significant portion of the Oregon’s budget—a budget […]

Ask HR: Does PTO cover Sick & Vacation leave?

Dear HR, This new sick time law is still so confusing! My company offers 40 hours of PTO to our employees every year on January 1st. PTO can be used for vacation days, personal time, or any qualifying sick time reason.  One of my employees used his 40 hours of PTO in February to go on vacation. Now they want to use 8 hours of sick time for an absence last Monday when he was home […]

The Affordable Care Act and the Future of Health Insurance

Cardinal’s Bird’s Eye View In November we looked at What Employers Need to Know – Choosing a Health Plan, the price of health insurance, compared small and individual market plans and costs—and made some predictions. It was not a stretch to predict that health insurance carriers who were not making a profit would continue to raise rates. Predicting what the Trump Administration and Congress will do now is more problematic.

Pre and Post Tax Health Insurance Reimbursements

Recently the IRS released guidance on the practice of employers giving employees health insurance reimbursements for premiums. It is not surprising that the IRS ruled that pre-tax programs are no longer allowed. What was surprising is that employers cannot reimburse employees for health insurance premiums with post-tax dollars. Post tax dollars means exactly that, the IRS has already gotten its share of taxes.    Why would the IRS care where money is spent after it […]

Medium Sized Employers and the ACA

As we get closer to 2015 employers that are close to 100 employees (or those in 2016 that are close to 50 employees) should to decide if they want to be a large or small employer under the Affordable Care Act. If you already offer health insurance many parts of this article will not apply to you.  You should however check to be sure that your plan meets the definition of health insurance – Ask […]

ACA Strategies

If you have 100 Full Time employees and Full Time Equivalents in 2015 or 50 Full Time employees and Full Time Equivalents in 2016 you will be subject to the $2000 tax/penalty under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) if you do not provide health insurance.  Often the option to pay a tax or provide health insurance is framed as two options-pay or play.  Either you pay the $2000 tax or provide health insurance to your […]

Wellness and the Affordable Care Act

There are plenty of conversations about the rise in health insurance rates.  Politicians on both sides debate the merits of the ACA and its role, or lack of a role, in shaping the direction of health care costs.  Health care providers, insurance companies and malpractice attorneys are just a few of those taking some or all of the blame for rising rates. One area that deserves more attention but is over looked is the consumer.  […]

2014 Legal Update – Part 2

At the Federal level there are two big items related to labor law. The first is in regards to a Supreme Court ruling on the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA).  The court ruled that benefits must be extended to same sex couples if the state they reside in recognizes same sex marriages.  What is unclear is how that applies in states that do not recognize same sex marriages.  Even more unclear is if a same […]