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Increased Civil Penalty Amounts for Group Health Plan Violations

Increased Civil Penalty Amounts for Group Health Plan ViolationsEffective March 17, 2022, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has Increased civil penalty amounts for group health plan violations:

CDC Loosens Mask-wearing Guidance for Most of U.S. Population

CDC Recently, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, CDC loosens mask-wearing guidance for most of U.S. population.

The CDC provides COVID-19 Community Levels as a tool to help communities decide what prevention steps to take based on the latest data. These levels can be low, medium or high, and are determined by hospital beds being used, hospital admissions and the total number of new COVID-19 cases in an area. These levels inform the agency’s guidance on mask-wearing, among other topics such as COVID-19 vaccines and testing.

DOL Proposes Updates to Davis-Bacon and Related Acts

Davis Bacon UpdatesOn March 11, 2022, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) announced a proposed rule to update certain provisions of the Davis-Bacon Act and other related laws that regulate wage rates for federal and federally assisted construction projects. This Legal Update video explains further.

4 Steps to Managing Mental Health at Your Organization

Create a Supportive Foundation

mental healthAn organization that is dedicated to preserving employee mental health and fostering a stigma-free environment is one that will succeed in its efforts to support employee mental health. Make sure that any mental health initiatives are aligned with core values, goals and ethics.

Wellness for Traveling Employees

traveling employeesWellness for traveling employees can be understandably difficult to stick to your plans, no matter how dedicated you are to living a healthy lifestyle day in, day out. This is particularly true if you have to travel frequently for work. Always being on the road can create roadblocks on your path toward eating healthy, getting enough exercise and prioritizing sleep.

Dental Insurance Protects More than Your Smile

Health FSA Carryovers

Health FSA CarryoversA health flexible spending account (FSA) is an employer-sponsored account that employees can use to pay for or reimburse their qualifying medical expenses on a tax-free basis, up to the amount contributed for the plan year. Health FSAs are subject to a “use-or-lose” rule that generally requires any unused funds at the end of the plan year (plus any applicable grace period) to be forfeited.

Hire to Fit Your Company Culture

Hire to Fit Your Company CulturePoor hiring decisions can be extremely costly for your company, in terms of business interruption, wasted recruiting and training resources, lower employee morale and more. You may realize that an individual is not a good fit, or a new employee may choose to leave if the job doesn’t match his or her expectations. In both circumstances, many of these separations are due to the fact that the hired individuals did not fit the company culture and therefore lacked productivity, creativity and/or morale.

Fueling Your Workout

Comparing HSAs, HRAs and FSAs

year-round benefitsEmployers are increasingly looking to consumer driven health plans to help soften the blow of continually rising health care costs. Depending on the model, consumer driven health plans typically include health reimbursement arrangements (HRAs), flexible spending accounts (FSAs) or health savings accounts (HSAs).

Consumer driven health plans generally increase employees’ stake in their own health care costs. In most cases, a consumer driven health plan covers a wide range of medical expenses, but also includes more cost-sharing for participants (for example, higher deductibles). Some plans incorporate an HRA, health FSA or HSA to help employees pay for their out-of-pocket medical expenses on a tax-free basis. This article provides some basic information about the similarities and differences between HRAs, FSAs and HSAs.

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