Monday Briefing: Supreme Court talks ERISA (again) and Senate votes to repeal Cadillac Tax

Let’s see. It’s early December. That means open-enrollment is winding down for many, year-end checklists are in vogue and ACA has survived for another year. What are we thinking about this week?

  • Some good stuff from our actuary friends. ASPPA comments may have been influential in DOL’s decision to delay the effective date of new 5500 questions. That’s according to ASPPA, but we tend to trust those guys. (ASPPA)
  • Thank you, Millman, for a very well-done article on 10 potential drivers for ACA premiums in 2017. (Millman)
  • Big data is a big deal for health plans. States are getting in on the action by creating their own databases and attempting to fill them with data. Here’s a listing of legislation by state. (APCD Council) Not so fast … read next bullet.
  • “Get your government hands off my ERISA health plan data” says Liberty Mutual to the State of Vermont. Last week the U.S. Supreme Court (they must really enjoy ERISA cases) heard arguments on the question of whether ERISA preempts such attempts by the states. (BNA) It was a barn-burner according to the people who know at ScotusBlog. We expect an opinion sometime in Spring 2016.
  • States jumping in on employee benefits policy. Hmmm? Sound familiar? Take a look at last week’s posts on state retirement plans here and here.
  • A clash of ideas? Some employers are starting to see wellness programs as a business imperative. (Plan Sponsor) 10 reasons employees hate wellness programs. (EBN)
  • We are suckers for lists like this: 10 big healthcare predictions for 2016. (Fortune)
  • It ain’t over yet. Not by a long-shot. But Senate votes 90–10 to repeal the Cadillac Tax. (The Hill)

Bob Seng

With plenty of experience in private practice and as an Assistant General Counsel for Pay & Benefits in a Fortune 50 Company, Bob understands that employee benefits law isn’t for everyone. That’s why he takes pride in listening carefully and responding with clear answers and advice that can be followed by busy clients.

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