EBIA Weekly Newsletter

Can Our Health FSA Reimburse the Expenses of an Employee’s Domestic Partner?

   March 22, 2018

QUESTION: We have been asked whether our health FSA can reimburse medical expenses incurred by an employee’s non-spouse domestic partner. Are these expenses eligible for reimbursement? ANSWER: It depends. Under Code § 105(b), only the following individuals’ medical expenses are eligible for tax-free reimbursement from a health FSA: the employee; the employee’s spouse; the employee’s … Read More

IRS Issues 2017 Version of Publication 969 on HSAs, HRAs, Health FSAs, and MSAs

   March 15, 2018

IRS Publication 969 (Health Savings Accounts and Other Tax-Favored Health Plans (for use in preparing 2017 returns)) Available at https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-prior/p969–2017.pdf Publication 969 has been updated for use in preparing 2017 tax returns. This publication provides basic information about HSAs, HRAs, health FSAs, Archer MSAs, and Medicare Advantage MSAs, including brief descriptions … Read More

Employee Wins ADA Association Discrimination Claim Against Employer That Delayed His Family’s Health Plan Enrollment

   March 15, 2018

Reiter v. Maxi-Aids, Inc., 2018 WL 557864 (E.D.N.Y. 2018) Available at https://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/USCOURTS-nyed-2_14-cv-03712/pdf/USCOURTS-nyed-2_14-cv-03712-0.pdf An employee with ongoing health issues requested that he and his family be added to his employer’s health plan after working for the employer for almost two years. The employer initially refused, claiming that a condition of the employee’s … Read More

CMS Questions Idaho’s Authorization of Individual Health Insurance Policies That Do Not Comply With the ACA

   March 15, 2018

CMS Letter to Gov. Otter and Director Cameron (March 8, 2018) Available at https://www.cms.gov/CCIIO/Resources/Letters/Downloads/letter-to-Otter.pdf CMS has notified the state of Idaho that health insurance products sold under the state insurance department’s Bulletin No. 18-01 apparently do not comply with certain provisions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), … Read More

Fifth Circuit Reverses Its Long-Standing Practice of Deferring to Plan Administrators’ Factual Determinations Even Absent Valid Discretionary Language

   March 15, 2018

Ariana M. v. Humana Health Plan of Tex., Inc., 2018 WL 1096980 (5th Cir. 2018) Available at http://www.ca5.uscourts.gov/opinions/pub/16/16-20174-CV2.pdf The Fifth Circuit will now review an ERISA plan administrator’s factual determinations “de novo” if the plan document does not contain a lawful grant of discretionary authority. Previously, the Fifth Circuit applied deferential … Read More