Washington State's New E-DUI Law takes force July 23, 2017

Beginning July 23, 2017, it will be against the law for Washington drivers to use hand-held cell phones while they are driving. This includes all electronic devices, even tablets, laptops and video games. Tickets for driving while using hand-held electronics will go on your record and be reported to your insurance provider.

Read more about the new law and the full article at Target Zero

 

 

AssuredPartners Compliance Observer 2nd Quarter 2017

 

CURRENT STATUS OF THE EMPLOYER MANDATE

At this time, the Affordable Care Act (ACA), including its employer mandate rules, remains federal law. Proposed legislation to repeal and replace the ACA is currently making its way through the federal legislative process. Both the American Health Care Act (AHCA), released in May, and the recent Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA), released on Thursday June 22, propose to reduce the penalties for failing to comply with the ACA’s employer mandate to zero beginning in 2016, effectively repealing the ACA’s employer mandate.

The ACA’s future is still uncertain. Since neither the AHCA or BCRA have been signed into law, the ACA’s employer mandate, and its penalty provisions, remain intact. However, because the employer mandate has been criticized as burdensome for employers and an impediment to business growth, it seems likely that its repeal will be part of any Republican plan to repeal and replace the ACA.

Read the full Observer Here

IRS Begins Large Employer ACA Reporting Penalty Process

By Caroline Smith ,

06/20/2017

As the American Health Care Act (AHCA) has not been signed into law yet, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is still in effect and the IRS is currently issuing notices to large employers to disclose whether they complied with the ACA reporting duties or not.

Large employer ACA reporting was required for 2015 and 2016 (even if transition relief was applied for 2015). Penalties can be up to $500 per each 2015 Form 1095-C statement ($250 for not providing the form to the employee and $250 for not filing with the IRS) and up to $3 million total for an annual penalty liability.

IRS notices referred to as "Request for Employer Reporting of Offers of Health Insurance Coverage (Forms 1094-C and 1095-C)" (aka Letter 5699) are being distributed to employers that failed to provide Form 1095-C and file copies with Form 1094-C regarding reporting for 2015 or 2016. Employers that receive this will have only 30 days to complete and return the form, which contains the following options:

  • Employer already complied with reporting duties;
  • Employer did not comply but encloses required forms with return letter;
  • Employer will comply with reporting duties within ninety days (or later, if further explained in the form);
  • Employer was not an Applicable Large Employer for the year in question; or
  • Other (requiring a statement explaining why required returns were not filed, and any actions planned to be taken).

The letter also states, "If you are required to file information returns under IRC Section 6056, failure to comply may result in the assessment of a penalty under IRC Section 6721 for a failure to file information returns."

The IRS offers good faith relief from filing penalties for timely filed forms if they are incomplete or incorrect for 2015 or 2016. This relief is only available upon showing "reasonable cause," which is narrowly interpreted (ex., due to fire, flood, or major illness).

 

Read Full Alert Here

From AssuredPartners NL: The Pros and Cons of Allowing Pets at Work

The Pros and Cons of Allowing Pets at Work

02/14/2017
By AStubblefield

Have you ever heard of an employer allowing pets at work? According to the Society of Human Resource Management, seven percent of employers now allow pets to come to work with their owners. If you are contemplating implementing a pet policy in your office, it is important to weigh the pros and cons. Read the whole post here

The Future of the ACA and Employee Benefit Plans

By Caroline Smith

It’s been over a week since the election results came in and since then, you have likely been inundated with emails, seen many television interviews, and heard other news sources espousing predictions of what is on the horizon for employee benefit plans, and specifically, the future of the Affordable Care Act (“ACA”). Indeed, the Trump administration and the Republican-dominated Congress will likely come out swinging, raring to take down the ACA as one of its top priorities in an effort to show supporters that President Trump is fulfilling one of his campaign promises immediately.

READ FULL ALERT