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New Rules for Disability Benefit Claims Are Now in Effect | Ohio Benefit Advisors

The Department of Labor’s new claim rules for disability benefits took effect April 2, 2018. The changes were announced over a year ago, but the effective date was delayed to give insurers, employers, and plan administrators adequate time for implementation. Although we’ve reported on the key issues in this blog previously, now seems like a … Continued

A DOL Audit Can Happen to You | Ohio Benefit Brokers

Summary plan descriptions (SPDs) are required for all retirement, health, and welfare plans subject to the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA). However, misconceptions about this requirement are widespread. ERISA attorney Stacy H. Barrow, partner with Marathas Barrow Weatherhead Lent LLP, had a chat with ThinkHR about the importance of having proper ERISA … Continued

DOL Fiduciary Rule Overturned | Ohio Benefit Brokers

In its March 15, 2018, decision, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit overturned the U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) Fiduciary Rule that expanded the definition of an investment advice fiduciary under the federal Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA). Under the Fiduciary Rule, investment brokers were going to be required to put … Continued

6 Ways to Keep the Flu from Sidelining Your Workplace | Ohio Employee Benefit Advisors

This year’s flu season is a rough one. Although the predominant strains of this year’s influenza viruses were represented in the vaccine, they mutated, which decreased the effectiveness of the immunization. The flu then spread widely and quickly, and in addition, the symptoms were severe and deadly. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention … Continued

Federal Employment Law Update – January 2018 | Ohio Benefit Consultants

WHD Revises Test for Unpaid InternshipsOn January 5, 2018, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division (WHD) released a Field Assistance Bulletin (FAB No. 2018-2) establishing that the primary beneficiary test, rather than the six-point test, will determine whether interns at for-profit employers are employees under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).The … Continued

Department of Labor Publishes Updated Penalties for OSHA Violations | Ohio Benefit Advisors

On January 2, 2018, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) published updated, inflation-adjusted penalties for violations of various laws regulated by the DOL and its internal components or divisions, including the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA). The DOL is required to adjust the level of civil monetary penalties for inflation by January 15 each … Continued

FAQs on Tobacco Cessation Coverage and Mental Health / Substance Use Disorder Parity | Ohio Employee Benefits

Recently, the Department of the Treasury, Department of Labor (DOL), and Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) (collectively, the Departments) issued FAQs About Affordable Care Act Implementation Part 34 and Mental Health and Substance Use Disorder Parity Implementation. The Departments’ FAQs cover two primary topics: tobacco cessation coverage and mental health / substance use … Continued

What is Essential? The Madness of Maintaining Job Descriptions Under the DOL | Ohio Employee Benefits

Your new position just got approved and, finally, that mission-critical headcount addition is green-lighted. Celebration ensues until the actual work of finding the ideal candidate begins. The first step is to get a job description. In some cases, a perfectly vetted position analysis and description may exist, one that captures the particulars and purpose of … Continued

Avoid Increased Penalties by Filing Annual Benefit Plan Reports on Time | Ohio Employee Benefits

Form 5500 is the annual report that group benefit plans use to report required information about the plan’s financial condition and operations. Most group and pension plans that are subject to ERISA are required to file a Form 5500. With the July 31 deadline for calendar year plans fast approaching, and higher penalties for not … Continued

Same-Sex Marriages and Group Health Benefits | Ohio Employee Benefits

From 2013 to 2015, a series of Supreme Court cases and government updates have changed the landscape of the way employers must consider same-sex spouses in relation to employee benefits. Most recently, in June 2015, the Supreme Court ruled in Obergefell v. Hodges, that the 14th Amendment requires a state to license a marriage between … Continued

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