The following offer quick links to recent news:
Tax Information Regarding the Marriage Equality Law – The Marriage Equality Act of July 24, 2011, ensures that same-sex couples be treated the same as different-sex couples under the laws of New York State. The passage of this act affects employer tax withholding when it comes to certain benefits, such as health benefits that are treated as domestic partner health benefits for federal tax purposes.
Click here to learn more about the tax effects of the Marriage Equality Act.
Click here to review the New York State’s tax withholding requirements for health benefits for same-sex married employees.
News Release Regarding Final Rule for Women’s Preventive Services – On January 20, 2012, The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued a news release regarding the upcoming final rule for coverage of women’s preventive services by health insurance plans. The final rule will give nonprofit employers that, based on religious beliefs, do not currently provide contraceptive coverage in their insurance plan, until August 1, 2013, to come into compliance with the requirement to cover all recommended preventive services including approved forms of contraception, without cost-sharing. Certain religious organizations remain exempt from this requirement.
Click here to read the news release.
Click here to learn more about the current guidelines for coverage of women’s preventive care.
Brooklyn HealthWorks is now offering a lower-cost high deductible Healthy NY plan for individuals and sole proprietors in Brooklyn. Previously, Brooklyn HealthWorks only offered coverage to small businesses with 2-50 workers. Visit their website to learn more.
Essential Health Benefits: Illustrative List of the Largest Three Small Group Products by State – On January 26, 2012, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released a list of the largest three small group health insurance products in each state. This list is meant to better inform consumers and other stakeholders, and to help states that decide to select an existing health plan to set the “benchmark” for the items and services included in the essential health benefits package. Click here to see the list and to learn more.
W-2 Reporting Requirements – On January 3, 2012, the IRS released Interim guidance to clarify how businesses should report the cost of employer-sponsored group health plan coverage on their W-2 Forms. Click here to learn more.
Essential Health Benefits – A proposed approach for states to define Essential Health Benefits as required by the Affordable Care Act was issued in a bulletin by the Department of Health and Human Services on December 16, 2011. All non-grandfathered individual and small group health insurance plans will have to cover Essential Health Benefits starting in 2014. To read the bulletin or fact sheet or to learn more about essential health benefits, click here.