PCORI Fee Deadline Drawing Near for HRA Plans

The July 31st deadline for health care insurers and sponsors of self-insured health plans to pay the annual PCORI fee is only a few weeks away. Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI), is a nonprofit, nongovernmental organization located in Washington, DC. Congress authorized the establishment of PCORI in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010. PCORI is funded in part by fees paid by certain health insurers and applicable sponsors of self-insured health plans, including Health Reimbursement Arrangements.

 
The fees are payable in connection with all HRAs for policy/plan years ending October 1, 2012, but stop applying for policy/plan years ending after September 30, 2019.  The fee is due for filing with payment by July 31, 2015 for all plan years ending in 2014.  Fees are to be reported and paid once a year using IRS Form 720 (even though IRS Form 720 is a Quarterly Federal Excise Tax Return).  A copy of the current IRS Form 720 can be found at http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/f720.pdf, and the appropriate fee can be reported in Part II.


The plan sponsor of an HRA is the employer. The fee imposed on a plan sponsor of an HRA is based on the average number of lives
(employee participants) covered under the plan, which means spouses, dependents, and any other beneficiaries can be ignored.  Not all HRA plan sponsors are required to pay the fee per IRS and Department of Labor guidance issued in September 2013.

  • Section 105 HRA (with only 1 employee) - Business owners with one employee that have an HRA in place no longer have to pay this fee.
  • Section 105 HRA (with 2 or more employees) & Integrated HRA - Business owners with two or more employees that have an HRA in place are still required to pay the fee by July 31, 2015.
  • Excepted Benefits HRA - Business owners with an Excepted Benefits HRA in place are not subject to the fee since it provides only excepted benefits.

The fee for a plan year ending on or after October 1, 2014, but before October 1, 2015, is $2.08 ($2.00 for a plan year ending on or after October 1, 2013, but before October 1, 2014), multiplied by the average number of lives covered under the plan for that plan year.


For complete instructions on paying and submitting the PCORI fee, please visit http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/i720.pdf. If you have questions regarding this or any other aspects of the ACA as it relates to tax advantaged plans, or maybe you are interested in learning how one of our tax saving benefit plans can work for you, simply contact us today!


Tom Stiles
BASE® - Digital Marketing Assistant

Affordable Options Amongst Compliance Fears

A recent ADP Research Institute study shows that the top three concerns of business owners are:

 - Cost of health coverage and other benefits
 - Complexities of the Affordable Care Act
 - Level and volume of government regulations


Business owners lack confidence to manage the complexities of ACA, IRS & ERISA rules & regulations, but BASE® is providing the information and tools to combat these concerns.  BASE® provides tax advantaged plans and compliance services to business owners across the country.  Whether it is keeping clients informed of compliance issues or providing tax savings, BASE® is helping business owners of varying sizes, from the self-employed to employer with multiple employees, avoid the risk of $100+ per day per employee penalties.  Here are just a couple of ways BASE® is helping business owners:


 - Assisting self-employed business owners and farmers by saving them an average of $4,500 in additional tax savings each year on health care expenses with a legally documented
Health Reimbursement Arrangement in place.
 - Educating small business owners on how to conform with market reforms, such as IRS Notice 2015-17, which requires small business owners to conform to guidelines regarding health coverage reimbursement arrangements and employer payment plans.  Small business owners have been given until June 30, 2015 to comply with market reforms without incurring penalties. 
 - Providing compliance services, such as the BASE® ERISA Wrap which is important to virtually all employers regardless of size or number of participants to fulfill Employee Retirement Security Act (ERISA) requirements and avoid a Department of Labor audit.

 

BASE® has been helping business owners across the country save valuable benefit dollars, while also providing compliance information and tools to manage the complexities of compliance rules and regulations of the ACA, IRS and ERISA and avoid the risk of penalties.  Contact  BASE® for more information regarding any concerns you may have.


Anne Case
BASE® - Director of Marketing & Communications

Cafeteria Plans Add To Employer Benefit Options

Benefits continue to play a huge role for employees when looking for a job. According to MetLife’s 13th annual U.S. Employee Benefit Trends Study 9, companies that offer 11 or more benefit options appeal most strongly to top performers. So what can employers offer other than just your standard health, dental, or vision plans? Take a look at the BASE® 125 Cafeteria Plan


The BASE® 125 Cafeteria Plan allows employers to provide additional benefit options to employees and save money. Employers that sponsor a BASE® 125 Cafeteria Plan can allow employees who are paying medical expenses, insurance premiums or dependent care expenses to do so on a pre-tax basis. A cafeteria plan can create sizable savings for both the employer and employee.


The IRS has made some revisions to the Flexible Spending Account (FSA) portion of the Cafeteria Plan in the past few years, and statistics show that employers and employees are embracing the new changes. From carry over limits to the maximums that employees can elect, employers are amending their FSA plans to take advantage of the added flexibility.


With out-of-pocket health care costs up 11% last year, employers are continuing to look for ways to help employees lessen the financial burden. Along with the Cafeteria Plan, BASE® has strategies for small business and self-employed to do just that. Keep in mind that BASE® remains committed to keeping all of their plans in compliance with ACA, IRS, DOL, and ERISA guidelines.


If you are interested in more information on how BASE® can help your small business and to receive a free benefit analysis, call BASE® today at 1-800-309-8012.


Tom Stiles
BASE® - Digital Marketing Assistant