New Year, New You with Employee Wellness Programs

As we welcome a new year, many of us are focused on how we can better ourselves and are making new resolutions. Some are emphasizing physical health, vowing to eat better and exercise more. Others are targeting their financial health, making an effort to spend less and save more. Some are centered on taking care … More >>

child care

Child Tax Credit, Dependent Care Program Changes for 2022

The American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) expanded the Child Tax Credit (CTC) program in 2021 in response to pandemic-related dependent care challenges. This expansion had a chance to be made permanent. However, as 2021 ended, the legislation containing this provision did not pass. Since the advance payments have ended, qualified parents/guardians will receive any refundable … More >>

DCAP Benefits and the Sandwich Generation

Life expectancy in the U.S. has gone up over the years thanks to a variety of factors. However, longer lifespans are creating a conundrum for many Americans. Millions of people in the workforce find themselves caring for their children and aging parents/relatives at the same time. A Dependent Care Assistance Program, or DCAP, can help … More >>

no suprises act

No Surprises Act and Medical Bills

Did you know more than a third of employees say the medical bills they receive after seeking care are “always or usually” a surprise? But 28% pay them anyway because they don’t want to have to deal with the insurance company. Insurance plans cover some of the cost of medical care. What’s left over falls … More >>

boost retirement funds HSA

Boost Retirement Funds With Your HSA

Pandemic-related losses have business owners looking for ways to cut costs. High Deductible Health Plans (HDHPs) help employers provide healthcare options while minimizing expenses. Due to the higher deductibles and out-of-pocket costs, employers often pair a qualified HDHP with Health Savings Accounts (HSAs). In addition to helping employees meet healthcare expenses, HSAs can help them … More >>

attract retain talent

How Can Employers Attract and Retain Top Talent

When the pandemic hit, workers were being furloughed or laid off in droves as forced shutdowns shrank, if not entirely closed, many businesses. With states having reopened and companies attempting to hire people back, another phenomenon has taken shape: Workers are refusing to go back to previous jobs or quitting the jobs they do have … More >>

2022 FSA Contribution Limit, Max Carryover Announced by IRS

On November 10, 2021, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) published Rev. Proc. 2021-45, announcing the 2022 annual contribution limit for Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs), maximum carryover amount, contribution limits for Transportation benefits and more. 2022 FSA Contribution Limits The annual maximum 2022 FSA contribution limit will increase to $2,850. The annual limit applies to Health … More >>

flu shots pandemic

Flu Shots and the Pandemic

Flu season can be miserable for everyone. Parents have to deal with sick kids at home. Employers have to deal with employees taking sick time. Doctors offices are hard to get into for an appointment. Add in people dealing with the coronavirus pandemic. It seems more important than ever to get, and stay, educated on … More >>

back to the office

Planning for Getting Back to the Office

For over a year and a half, a large percentage of the American workforce has been working remotely. While many employees are happy to continue that model, employers in general are eager to have their staff return to the office. This can be a big adjustment for everyone involved. “The Great Resignation” taking place in … More >>

Mental Health Care and Your Benefits Accounts

With one in five U.S. adults experiencing some form of mental illness in any given year, the need for mental health care impacts many families. Yet, according to the National Alliance of Mental Illness (NAMI), 55 percent of adults and 49 percent of children ages 6-17 with a mental illness don’t receive mental health care services. … More >>

HSA Growth: Now’s the Time to Invest

Opening a Health Savings Account (HSA) can be a great investment in your personal healthcare and financial future. Owned by the participant-employee (rather than the employer), the HSA is a versatile spending and savings account that can be used for many healthcare expenses. Since they can keep the account for life, HSA owners should adopt … More >>

Summer Camp and Your Dependent Care FSA

School is out for the summer! To combat boredom and keep their kids engaged, a lot of parents turn to summer camps. With options that include fishing, hiking, playing outside, and more, summer camps are a great way to keep your child from the doldrums. Parents and guardians who signed up for a Dependent Care … More >>

2022 HSA Contribution Limits and More Announced by IRS

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) published the 2022 annual contribution limits for Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) on Monday, May 10. The announcement also featured the high deductible health plan minimum deductibles and out-of-pocket maximum amounts for next year. Learn more about 2022 HSA contribution limits. 2022 HSA Contribution Limits In 2022, HSA owners will see … More >>

HSA Contributions – Approaching the Tax Deadline

The 2021 tax deadline has been moved from April 15 to May 17 by the IRS. Health Savings Account (HSA) owners are usually keenly aware of the account’s triple tax advantage: pre-tax contributions, tax-free withdrawals for eligible expenses, and tax-free growth. What you may not know is that you can take advantage of tax-free contributions … More >>

COVID-19 PPE Is Now An Eligible Healthcare Expense

The fight against COVID-19 has expanded to the purchase of personal protective equipment (PPE) items. On Friday, March 26, the IRS released Announcement 2021-7, which qualifies PPE purchased for the primary purpose of preventing the spread of COVID-19 as medical expenses under section 213(d) of the Internal Revenue Code. The regulation allows specific items to be … More >>

ARPA COBRA FAQ

ARPA and COBRA Subsidy FAQs

On Thursday, March 11, President Biden signed the  American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) of 2021. In addition to other features, ARPA provides full COBRA subsidies under specific circumstances and creates significant additional COBRA enrollment eligibility rules. The following is a list of common ARPA COBRA subsidy frequently asked questions (FAQs). This blog is not intended to be used as … More >>

Creative employee benefits

Exploring Creative Benefits Plan Offerings

Employers, you know it’s true. Your benefits plan can make your company look more attractive, help you recruit and keep top talent, and improve the morale of your workforce. While there are standard benefit plan options such as group health coverage, life insurance, and retirement plans, there are other options that can put you over … More >>

Health and Dependent Care FSA Rules

Health and Dependent Care FSA Rules for 2021-2022

The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 was recently approved by Congress and the President. The bill provides a number of relief measures to help people cope with the ongoing COVID-19 healthcare crisis. Among the provisions are new temporary rules for health and dependent care Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs). The new rules allow for increased carryover amounts, … More >>

4 Things to Know About Your FSA Before the Year Ends

When you have a Flexible Spending Account (FSA), you set aside money before taxes to cover qualified out-of-pocket healthcare expenses for yourself and your family. As the year comes to an end, there are a few things you should be aware of so you can maximize your account’s benefits. Here are 4 things to know … More >>

Use-it-or-Lose-it: COVID-19 and Your FSA Balance

During the pandemic, a lot of people spent more time at home and didn’t keep up with their normal spending habits. Because of that, your remaining FSA balance may be larger than that of a normal year. In fact, FSAStore.com estimates that the average FSA account holder has 30-35 percent more in their account balance … More >>

FSA and HSA: Can You Have Both at the Same Time?

During enrollment season, a question people commonly ask is, “Can I have an FSA and HSA at the same time?” Both benefit accounts are popular because people want to maximize their tax savings and lower their healthcare costs. Let’s take a look at both accounts and see if you can have an FSA and an … More >>

Questions Employers Need to Ask Before Building A Benefits Plan

A company’s benefits package is a vital tool for attracting and keeping talented employees. It can also improve workforce health and engagement. But with workers who span four generations in today’s labor force, building a benefits plan can be a challenge for employers. Baby Boomers are nearing retirement while Gen Z is just entering the workforce. Meanwhile, … More >>

IRS Relaxes Mid-Year FSA Elections, Extends Grace Period

On Tuesday, May 12, the IRS published additional COVID-19 guidance for employer-sponsored healthcare benefits.  Drafted to address unanticipated changes in medical and childcare costs due to the COVID-19 emergency, the two Notices relax mid-year election changes for health Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs) and Dependent Care Assistance Programs (DCAPs). They also provide more flexibility in grace … More >>

Furloughs vs Layoffs – COBRA During COVID-19

The impact of COVID-19 on the economy has created a situation where a lot of people have been furloughed or laid-off. One frequently asked question people want to know is whether or not they are eligible for COBRA benefits. Learn more about furloughs vs layoffs, COBRA eligibility, qualified events, and the cost of continuing coverage. … More >>

COBRA Benefits During COVID-19: Proposals for Expansion

Nearly a month after Congress passed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES Act), millions of American workers and employers want to know if COBRA benefits will also be expanded. Currently, Congress is working on some relief legislation that may expand COBRA benefits. Learn more below about past legislation, current proposals, and how … More >>