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Willis Towers Watson Insider covers health care and retirement benefit regulations, case law and policy, along with historical trends and future directions. This issue considers the midterm election results in terms of employee benefits. It also describes a proposed rule that would expand health reimbursement arrangements, final regulations on exemptions from the ACA’s contraceptive coverage mandate, the DOL’s stepped-up enforcement of HIPAA wellness rules and 2019 limits for employee benefit plans.

Midterm election results: Implications for employee benefits and compensation

Prescription drug costs will likely remain high on the legislative agenda, along with retirement savings and surprise medical billing. Read more.

Proposed rule would establish new types of health reimbursement arrangements

Under the proposal, HRAs would be easier to offer and to use, and they could be used in conjunction with individual health coverage. Read more.

Agencies issue final regulations on contraceptive coverage exemptions

The final regulations generally adhere to the interim final regulations, which significantly broadened exemptions from the contraceptive coverage mandate. Read more.

Recent DOL lawsuits demonstrate increased enforcement of HIPAA wellness rules

The Department of Labor has begun suing employers for noncompliance with the rules for wellness programs under HIPAA, focusing on health-contingent outcome-based wellness programs. Read more.

Massachusetts Health Insurance Responsibility Disclosure form due by November 30

The form, which must be submitted annually, becomes available on November 1 and is due on November 30, even from employers that do not offer any health coverage. Read more.

IRS releases 2019 inflation-adjusted limits for employee benefit plans

These limits affect health flexible spending arrangements, transportation fringe benefits, adoption assistance programs, ACA-related penalties and long-term care premiums. Read more.