7 Things to Consider for 2020 Benefits Planning

August 12, 2019
August 12, 2019 Jonathan Nolan

7 Things to Consider for 2020 Benefits Planning

As you plan for next year’s group benefits, you will juggle a variety of compliance issues, contribution strategies, benefit offerings, communications, and more. This guide should help you to plan around top priorities.

Health savings accounts (HSAs) or health reimbursement accounts (HRAs). Determine whether you might be eligible to participate in either of these programs, which can help you employees manage out-of-pocket healthcare expenses. Update plan documents to account for new savings limits. Two new types of HRAs are available (individual -coverage HRAs or excepted benefit HRAs); investigate whether one of these plans might be a better fit for your needs.

Review plans for compliance. The Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act (MHPAEA) sets forth new guidelines with regard to mental health coverage. Prepare, also, for compliance issues regarding the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) and disclosure requirements.

Wellness programs.  The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s (EEOC)’s incentive limit rules were lifted, which might trigger the need for benefit design changes.  Wellness plans must also comply with HIPAA rules, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA),and the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act.

Paid leave. Assess your needs for paid sick, disability, or family leave programs. Check for new state and local mandates with regard to these benefits.

Prescription drug coverage. Monitor changes at the federal and state levels, regarding the prices of prescription drugs. Evaluate the impact on your prescription drug benefits, and reassess plans as needed.

Preventive services. Modify preventive care benefits for the 2020 plan year to include the latest recommendations from the CDC, Affordable Care Act, Health Services and Resources Administration (HRSA) and the US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF). Revise benefit plans with regard to HIV prevention, cervical cancer, osteoporosis, skin cancer, obesity, alcohol use, perinatal depression, and vitamin D supplementation in older adults. Employers with moral or religious objections to contraception should monitor developing court cases. Plan documents, summary plan descriptions (SPDs), summaries of benefits and coverage (SBCs) and other materials must be updated to reflect changes in preventive care.

Data security. Evaluate all tech vendors, wellness tools, mobile apps, and artificial intelligence for HIPAA and data protection compliance.

If you need help evaluating your 2020 benefits plan, or have questions about compliance issues, please contact us. We can help you determine where changes should be made, and assist in making those changes with regard to current laws and professional standards.


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