Tax Issues

Updates

Tax Reform Must Preserve Employer-Sponsored Benefits

ERIC appreciates that the Republicans’ United Framework for Tax Reform encourages retirement security and is hopeful that as lawmakers move forward crafting legislation, they will preserve the pre-tax treatment of employer-sponsored benefits… More

ERIC Teams with Business Groups to Ask Congress to Protect Employer-Sponsored Health Care

The ERISA Industry Committee (ERIC), along with a robust group of other trade associations representing employers, sent a letter to members of Congress expressing support for legislation that continues funding for the cost-sharing reduction (CSR) payments under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), but also asking that the 178 million Americans who receive health insurance through their employer be provided relief from the ACA… More

protected content MHP, Emergency Centers, The HIT, New Reform Proposals and More!

Greetings from ERIC headquarters today, where we are preparing for a coming battle over ACA market stabilization, planning the ERIC Fall Policy Conference, and much more. I’ve got some quick hits for you today, so let’s get to it… More

protected content Health Reform Update, New Survey, Call TODAY, EMRs, and More!

Today’s missive includes updates on: 1) The latest on the American Health Care Act, 2) HHS request for regulatory change suggestions, 3) The government push for health information technology is under the microscope, 4) Looking at a different workplace wellness bill, 5) Recent Oliver Wyman health consumer survey, 6) Latest DRIVE Health advocacy, and 7) Recap of event with House E&C Chairman Walden… More

protected content UFAs Appear, AHCA Update, Individual Market Stability, Rx “Brand Penalties,” and More

There have been a number of developments in the past several days, so I wanted to make sure you all had the latest – no action needed, just info below. I’m looking forward to seeing some of you on Monday in NYC at the In-House Benefits Counsel Network conference, and to seeing many more of you next week at ERIC’s Spring Policy Meeting! Hopefully as many ERIC members as possible will be represented. Now let’s get to the updates… More

See All Updates

Court Rulings

Obergefell v. Hodges Decision
ERIC President/CEO Annette Guarisco Fildes Comments on the U.S. Supreme Court’s Decision

Today’s decision means that same sex marriages must be recognized throughout the U.S. Because of this, more employees will be able to marry and provide benefits for their spouses on a tax-free basis. … More

protected content SCOTUS Accepts ACA Exchange Subsidy Case for Review

The U.S. Supreme Court on Friday decided to accept an appeal from a case decided by the 4th Circuit Court to debate, once again, a key provision of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). This time the issue before the Court will be whether individuals participating in federally run Exchanges (as opposed to state-run Exchanges) may receive federal tax subsidies for the purchase of health insurance … More

protected content U.S. Supreme Court Hears Oral Arguments in U.S. v. Quality Stores

The U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments this week on U.S. v. Quality Stores, Inc. The case involves whether severance payments made because of involuntary separation from employment are considered “wages” and therefore subject to the FICA payroll tax. … More

protected content Coverage on U.S. Supreme Court Rulings on DOMA and Proposition 8

As you probably have heard, the U.S. Supreme Court on June 26 issued its long-awaited decisions on the constitutionality of same-sex marriages, ruling that section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act is unconstitutional under the Equal Protection Clause in the United States v. Windsor. … More

protected content Supreme Court Invalidates DOMA and Dismisses California Proposition 8 Appeal

The U.S. Supreme Court has issued its long-awaited decisions on the constitutionality of same-sex marriages. The Court’s holdings in these cases could have a significant impact on the manner in which employee benefit plans need to be operated. The Court heard two cases involving same-sex marriages – one involving state law and the other involving federal law.… More

ERIC President Scott Macey Comments on the U.S. Supreme Court’s Decisions on the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and Proposition 8

Washington, D.C. -- ERIC President Scott Macey Comments on the U.S. Supreme Court’s Decisions on the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and Proposition 8: “Today’s rulings by the U.S. Supreme Court could have a significant impact on the way employee benefit plans are administered. Companies will need to carefully evaluate their plans in light of these decisions. … More

More Court Rulings

Government Reports

protected content Review of Health Provisions Included in President Obama’s FY 2016 Budget

Today the president released his proposed budget ideas for Fiscal Year 2016, which starts this coming October 1. From my vantage point … More

protected content Senate Finance Committee Republican Staff Releases Tax Reform Analysis

The staff for incoming Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch (R-UT) released a 341-page analysis of issues to consider as part of an effort to reform the tax code in the next Congress. … More

protected content Treasury and IRS Release 2014-2015 Priority Guidance Plan

The Treasury Department and Internal Revenue Service released their joint 2014-2015 priority guidance plan which contains 65 items under the Retirement Benefits and Executive Compensation, Health Care and Other Benefits sections. … More

protected content CBO Report on Deficit Reduction Options Includes Retirement and Health Tax Incentives

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) released a report entitled “Options for Reducing the Deficit 2014-2023,” which contains 103 options for cutting the U.S. government’s deficit, including policy options related to retirement and health spending and tax incentives. … More

protected content JCT Issues Report on Ways and Means Working Groups on Tax Reform

The Joint Committee on Taxation released its 568-page report on “Present Law and Suggestions for Reform Submitted to the Tax Reform Working Groups” on May 6th. In February 2013, the Ways and Means Committee created 11 Working Groups – each assigned a designated area of the tax code – in order to review current tax law and ideas for tax reform.… More

protected content Analysis of Health-Related Proposals in Obama Administration’s FY 2014 Budget

As promised, President Obama formally released his budget yesterday for Fiscal Year 2014 (which starts October 1, 2013 and runs through September 30, 2014.) Although the really earth-shaking developments are mostly on the retirement side, there were nonetheless some interesting developments on the health front … More

More Government Reports

Judicial Documents

protected content U.S. Supreme Court Hears Oral Arguments in U.S. v. Quality Stores

The U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments this week on U.S. v. Quality Stores, Inc. The case involves whether severance payments made because of involuntary separation from employment are considered “wages” and therefore subject to the FICA payroll tax. … More

protected content Coverage on U.S. Supreme Court Rulings on DOMA and Proposition 8

As you probably have heard, the U.S. Supreme Court on June 26 issued its long-awaited decisions on the constitutionality of same-sex marriages, ruling that section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act is unconstitutional under the Equal Protection Clause in the United States v. Windsor. … More

protected content Supreme Court Invalidates DOMA and Dismisses California Proposition 8 Appeal

The U.S. Supreme Court has issued its long-awaited decisions on the constitutionality of same-sex marriages. The Court’s holdings in these cases could have a significant impact on the manner in which employee benefit plans need to be operated. The Court heard two cases involving same-sex marriages – one involving state law and the other involving federal law.… More

More Judicial Documents

Legislative Documents

protected content What to Do with the ACA?  Review of Republican Alternative

Three Congressional Republicans, Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT), Chair of the Senate Finance Committee, Sen. Richard Burr (R-NC), and Rep. Fred Upton (R-MI), Chair of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, on February 5 released a narrative of their ideas for an alternative to the Affordable Care Act (ACA). … More

protected content Review of Health Provisions Included in President Obama’s FY 2016 Budget

Today the president released his proposed budget ideas for Fiscal Year 2016, which starts this coming October 1. From my vantage point … More

protected content Pop up IRS ACA Guidance and House Passes Bill Repealing Medical Device Tax

Yesterday was a Big Day on the Health Front – three new IRS notices and House-only repeal of the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA’s) excise tax on medical devices. … More

protected content JCT Tax Expenditure Report Demonstrates Risk to Benefits

On August 5, the Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT) released its tax expenditure report for 2014 through 2018. The tax expenditure report discusses and assesses forgone federal tax revenue values for the tax rules that exempt taxpayers from (or allow them to defer into the future) otherwise taxable income. … More

protected content Senate Finance Committee Approves Extension of Expiring Multiemployer Funding Rules

The Senate Finance Committee under new Chairman Ron Wyden (D-OR) on April 3 approved a series of tax provisions that expired in 2013 but are generally renewed on an annual basis -- dubbed the “tax extenders.” … More

protected content Ways and Means Chairman Camp Unveils Tax Reform Discussion Draft

House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp (R-MI) earlier today released a “discussion draft” of his tax reform proposal. The proposal aims to broaden the tax base in order to cut and streamline the federal income tax rates for individuals and companies.… More

protected content CBO Report on Deficit Reduction Options Includes Retirement and Health Tax Incentives

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) released a report entitled “Options for Reducing the Deficit 2014-2023,” which contains 103 options for cutting the U.S. government’s deficit, including policy options related to retirement and health spending and tax incentives. … More

protected content Attention Turns to Budget Conference Following Agreement to Reopen the Government

Now that Washington lawmakers temporarily resolved the government shutdown that was plaguing the city over the past two weeks, attention turns to an upcoming budget conference between the House and Senate and whether the lawmakers can come to an agreement on the parameters for tax and entitlement reform, and fund the government for the rest of the current fiscal year, which began on October 1.… More

protected content Michigan Health Insurance Claims Tax Extended

Michigan Governor Rick Snyder (R) on June 11 signed legislation extending until January 1, 2018, a one percent tax on health insurance claims (of both insured and self-insured plans) paid by plan administrators for medical services rendered in the state to Michigan residents. … More

protected content Senate Finance Releases Option Paper on Retirement & Health Tax Expenditure Changes under Tax Reform

Yesterday, the Senate Finance Committee released its “options” paper on retirement and health policy changes and tax reform. This is option paper number 7 in a series that the Senate Finance Committee has released as a result of its meetings with members and staff on options to consider under tax reform by subject matter.… More

protected content JCT Issues Report on Ways and Means Working Groups on Tax Reform

The Joint Committee on Taxation released its 568-page report on “Present Law and Suggestions for Reform Submitted to the Tax Reform Working Groups” on May 6th. In February 2013, the Ways and Means Committee created 11 Working Groups – each assigned a designated area of the tax code – in order to review current tax law and ideas for tax reform.… More

protected content Analysis of Health-Related Proposals in Obama Administration’s FY 2014 Budget

As promised, President Obama formally released his budget yesterday for Fiscal Year 2014 (which starts October 1, 2013 and runs through September 30, 2014.) Although the really earth-shaking developments are mostly on the retirement side, there were nonetheless some interesting developments on the health front … More

More Legislative Documents

Letters to Congress

ERIC Teams with Business Groups to Ask Congress to Protect Employer-Sponsored Health Care

The ERISA Industry Committee (ERIC), along with a robust group of other trade associations representing employers, sent a letter to members of Congress expressing support for legislation that continues funding for the cost-sharing reduction (CSR) payments under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), but also asking that the 178 million Americans who receive health insurance through their employer be provided relief from the ACA… More

More Letters to Congress

Policy Briefs

Overview of the Final Health Care Reform Law

The House and Senate on March 25 approved the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act (H.R. 4872), the sidecar reconciliation bill that… More

More Policy Briefs

Press Releases

Tax Reform Must Preserve Employer-Sponsored Benefits

ERIC appreciates that the Republicans’ United Framework for Tax Reform encourages retirement security and is hopeful that as lawmakers move forward crafting legislation, they will preserve the pre-tax treatment of employer-sponsored benefits… More

ERIC Teams with Business Groups to Ask Congress to Protect Employer-Sponsored Health Care

The ERISA Industry Committee (ERIC), along with a robust group of other trade associations representing employers, sent a letter to members of Congress expressing support for legislation that continues funding for the cost-sharing reduction (CSR) payments under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), but also asking that the 178 million Americans who receive health insurance through their employer be provided relief from the ACA… More

With Failing Exchanges, Importance of Employer-Sponsored Health Plans Growing

Today’s release of the Kaiser Family Foundation and the Health Research & Educational Trust (HRET) 2016 Employer Health Benefits Survey highlights the growing importance of employer-sponsored health insurance plans… More

ERIC Concerned About New Health Care Tax Proposed by House GOP

The ERISA Industry Committee (ERIC) today expressed serious concern with a major provision in the health policy paper released by the U.S. House of Representatives’ Republican Task Force on Health Care Reform… More

Obergefell v. Hodges Decision
ERIC President/CEO Annette Guarisco Fildes Comments on the U.S. Supreme Court’s Decision

Today’s decision means that same sex marriages must be recognized throughout the U.S. Because of this, more employees will be able to marry and provide benefits for their spouses on a tax-free basis. … More

ERIC President Scott Macey Comments on the U.S. Supreme Court’s Decisions on the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and Proposition 8

Washington, D.C. -- ERIC President Scott Macey Comments on the U.S. Supreme Court’s Decisions on the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and Proposition 8: “Today’s rulings by the U.S. Supreme Court could have a significant impact on the way employee benefit plans are administered. Companies will need to carefully evaluate their plans in light of these decisions. … More

More Press Releases

Regulatory Documents

protected content IRS Releases Initial Guidance on the ACA Cadillac Tax

Today IRS and the Treasury issued Notice 2015-16, which is intended to “initiate and inform” us about the potential application of the Cadillac tax under the Affordable Care Act (ACA).… More

protected content Pop up IRS ACA Guidance and House Passes Bill Repealing Medical Device Tax

Yesterday was a Big Day on the Health Front – three new IRS notices and House-only repeal of the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA’s) excise tax on medical devices. … More

protected content IRS Guidance Addresses Application of Windsor Decision on Cafeteria Plans and HSAs

Yesterday the IRS released Notice 2014-1 to provide more details on the application of the Supreme Court’s decision in the Windsor case, which found that section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) is unconstitutional. … More

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Covington & Burling Summarizes Treasury Final Regulations on Additional Medicare Tax and Investment Income Tax

The Treasury Department and IRS on November 29 published in the Federal Register final regulations relating to Additional Hospital Insurance Tax on income above threshold amounts, as added by the Affordable Care Act. … More

IRS Announces 2014 Retirement Plan Limitations and Other Tax Code Limits

The Internal Revenue Service on October 30 announced cost of living adjustments affecting dollar limitations for pension plans and other retirement-related items for tax year 2014. … More

protected content IRS Provides Special Procedures for DOMA Refund Claims

The IRS issued Notice 2013-61, which provides special procedures for requesting refunds or adjustments for overpayments of FICA taxes and… More

protected content Final Regulations on the ACA Individual Mandate and the Exchange Appeals Process

Last week Treasury and the IRS finalized a regulation that was proposed last February regarding an individual’s “shared responsibility” for maintaining Minimum Essential (health) Coverage (MEC). HHS also published a final regulation on, among other things, the process for appealing decisions made by the Exchanges on an employee’s eligibility for subsidized coverage in the Exchanges.… More

protected content Treasury and IRS Issue Guidance on DOMA Issues (but NOT retroactive effect)

Today, the Treasury Department and Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) issued Revenue Ruling 2013-17, which provides guidance on the treatment of same-sex married couples for federal income tax purposes, including for some issues relating to retirement benefits. … More

protected content Treasury Provides Initial Important Guidance on DOMA

Treasury and the IRS published long-awaited guidance today on the application of the Supreme Court’s decision on June 26, 2013, to invalidate section 3 of the DOMA (which had prevented federal recognition of same-sex marriages.) … More

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IRS Releases Updated Form 720 for Health Plans to Pay PCOR Fee; Announces that Fees Are Deductible as Ordinary Business Expense

The Internal Revenue Service on June 3 published an updated version of Form 720, Quarterly Federal Excise Tax Return, for issuers and plan sponsors to use to pay the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research (PCOR) fee. … More

More Regulatory Documents

Testimony

ERIC Highlights Importance of Employer-Sponsored Health Plans Before Congress

ERIC today submitted written testimony to the U.S. House Committee on Ways and Means and the House Subcommittee on Health, Employment, Labor and Pensions of the Education and the Workforce Committee regarding the tax treatment of health care and the important role that employers serve in providing health care coverage to workers and their families… More

More Testimony