Legislative & Regulatory Updates

FASB Clarifies Stock Compensation Accounting for Performance Awards

Written By Marc Stockwell

For employers who grant performance based stock awards that could potentially "vest" after the employee has separated from service, FASB has clarified that the awards should be expensed using the date of grant price and the actual financial performance during the performance period. This update is applicable to many performance based awards which often require achievement of financial performance despite the death or retirement of the employee prior to the end of the performance period.

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Important Guidance Issued on COBRA/Marketplace Coverage Interplay

The Department of Labor (DOL) and Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) issued several pieces of guidance regarding the interplay between COBRA and new Marketplace coverage. The guidance provides important information and clarification to both plan administrators and plan participants regarding their opportunities and obligations.

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IRS Releases 2015 Indexed Amounts for HSAs, HDHPs

On April 23, the U.S. Treasury Department and Internal Revenue Service (IRS) released Revenue Procedure 2014-30, which lists the 2015 indexed amounts, adjusted for inflation, for health savings accounts and high-deductible health plans (HDHPs).

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FAQ – Health Care Reform Shared Responsibility Rules
Based on questions posed during 3.21.13 webinar

1. Does membership in an industry association cause any issue with the aggregation rules to determine applicable large employer status?
No. An employer's common ownership with other entities meeting certain percentage thresholds is required (generally 80% common ownership). Caution - There may be attribution of ownership between family members, estate planning trusts, and other entities.

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Employer Shared Responsibility Rules Delay and Q & A

On February 10, 2014, an employer's path towards complying with the Affordable Care Act took another twist and turn. The White House announced further delays in the Employer Shared Responsibility Rules under IRC Section 4980H. The IRS and Treasury then quickly followed up with the release of a Fact Sheet and a set of 46 Questions and Answers.

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Employee Benefit Plan Limits for 2014

Findley Davies' guide summarizes retirement plan, social security, Medicare Part D and Health Savings Account limits for 2014 with a comparison to 2013.

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Affordable Care Act – Helpful Resources for Employers

Findley Davies has compiled a list of resources for employers seeking more information about the Affordable Care Act (ACA), Exchanges (Marketplaces), and websites which may be helpful to employees.

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Affordable Care Act Delays: Employer Considerations

On July 2, 2013, the U.S. Department of Treasury announced it will provide an additional year before the Affordable Care Act (ACA) mandatory employer and insurer reporting requirements begin. It is designed to meet two goals. First, it will allow the Treasury to consider ways to simplify the new reporting requirements consistent with the law. Second, it will provide time to adapt health coverage and reporting systems while employers are moving toward making health coverage affordable and accessible for their employees.

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Defense of Marriage Act Opinion – Implications to Employers & Potential Actions

The Supreme Court's Decision
On June 26, 2013, the U.S. Supreme Court released its anxiously anticipated opinion in the case of United States v. Windsor which held that the Defense of Marriage Act ("DOMA") impinged on the right of a state to define marriage and violated the right to equal protection as guaranteed by the Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. DOMA had defined a marriage as only a legal union between one man and one woman as husband and wife, and a spouse as only a person of the opposite sex who is a husband or wife.

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Taking the Next Steps on the Path to Health Care Compliance

Since its enactment on March 23, 2010, 53 of the 57 provisions required by the Affordable Care Act for 2010-2012 are in place, and it's in the employers' best interest to prepare for the next set of requirements.

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Overview of IRS Guidelines on Defining FTEs

On August 31, 2012 the Internal Revenue Service ("IRS") issued guidance on how to determine if an employee is a "full-time" employee for purposes of complying with the employer shared responsibility (aka "pay or play") rules that take effect in 2014.

In this overview, we'll re-visit the shared responsibility rules, review the safe harbor methods offered by the IRS, and discuss how this impacts the operation of an employer sponsored group health plan.

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