New tax withholding tables and deadline released

Posted by Emily Kubis on Fri, Jan 19, 2018 @ 09:01

Employers must implement by Feb. 15

The IRS announced this week the new income tax withholding tables for 2018, reflecting changes made by the GOP’s Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.

Employers should begin using these new tables as soon as possible, but they must be implemented by February 15. Organizations should continue using the 2017 withholding tables until the 2018 tables have been implemented.

There are still seven federal income tax brackets, but the rates have been slightly lowered and income ranges have been adjusted.

Read More

Tags: HR, employers, health insurance small employers, hr software, employer digest, employee benefit adviser, tax withholding

Financial advisors, will Medicare changes affect your high-income clients?

Posted by Emily Kubis on Wed, Jan 17, 2018 @ 08:01

What advisors need to know

Changes to Medicare thresholds for higher Part B and Part D premiums will affect higher income recipients this year.

Medicare beneficiaries with higher incomes pay higher premiums for Parts B and D, called income-related monthly adjustment amounts, or IRMAA. Beginning this year and applying to tax year 2016, the thresholds for the surcharges have changed.

The surcharges apply to individuals with modified adjusted gross incomes above $85,000 and couples above $170,000.

Read More

Tags: Bernard Health, retirement, financial planner, financial advisors, healthcare extension, medicare costs

Three healthcare tips for tax time

Posted by Alex Tolbert on Mon, Jan 15, 2018 @ 07:01

Trying to beat the tax time rush?

Mid-January marks the start of tax season, and health care items throughout the past year can impact how you file your taxes. 

This time of year typically creates a lot of consumer confusion, and getting all the facts straight can be tricky. With the repeal of the Affordable Care Act’s individual mandate recently in the news, this topic is certain to cause particular issues this year. 

Aside from the individual mandate, other health care expenses can also affect your tax return, including Health Savings Accounts and high-cost medical expenses. 

If you’re trying to beat the tax time rush, here are a few tips on what you should know about these items.

Read More

Tags: healthcare, aca, HSA taxes, taxes, The Tennessean, individual mandate

With the individual mandate repealed, three things to expect

Posted by Alex Tolbert on Fri, Jan 12, 2018 @ 10:01

When is the repeal effective? 

Republicans successfully repealed the Affordable Care Act’s individual mandate through their tax reform legislation, which has created many questions for consumers.

How will this decision affect insurance markets and consumers’ ability to get coverage? Without additional legislative action, there are three things we can expect.

With the individual mandate repealed, many healthy people will drop their coverage. This will likely lead insurers to expect to lose money, and they will either exit the individual market or raise premiums. As a result, there will be increased pressure on Congress to come up with a solution before consumers’ access to coverage is reduced.

Let’s go through each of these predictions, but first, a little more on repeal.

Read More

Tags: healthcare, aca, The Tennessean, individual mandate

Three healthcare resolutions for consumers in 2018

Posted by Alex Tolbert on Wed, Jan 10, 2018 @ 08:01

Looking ahead to 2018

Healthcare policies made plenty of headlines in 2017, but unfortunately, there won’t be much relief for consumers when it comes to high costs and out-of-pocket spending.

Republicans were largely focused on repealing the Affordable Care Act this year, in efforts that were ultimately unsuccessful. The party did successfully repeal the individual mandate through the Republican tax bill, but a year later, the law is still largely intact, and very little time has been spent trying to improve it.

Both the law’s supporters and opponents agree that Obamacare has challenges—particularly around affordability. But a bipartisan solution to those challenges was not in the cards this year, and 2018 doesn’t seem promising, either.

Repealing the individual mandate will reduce the tax burden for consumers who don’t want to carry insurance, but it won’t affect many of the other challenges healthcare consumers face. These include rising medical bills, narrow networks, and increased out-of-pocket costs.

The takeaway? Expect expenses to remain steady or rise next year. In light of this, here are three resolutions for consumers about how to minimize your costs and become a better healthcare consumer. It won’t help you avoid all of your bills, but it might help reduce your costs.

Read More

Tags: Affordable Care Act, health insurance, obamacare, marketplace, universal healthcare, individual market, Bernie Sanders, Huffington Post, single-payer, tim kaine

What HR data should I track?

Posted by Emily Kubis on Mon, Jan 08, 2018 @ 07:01

Spot trends with analytics

According to Paycor’s 2017 HR Trendcast, HR leaders are most worried about finding and keeping talent. With unemployment rates at record lows, many organizations are struggling to find the right people.

When thinking about improving your HR strategies in 2018, data-driven decision making can make a big difference in your approach to recruitment and retention. But in order to make those data-driven decisions, you first have to track the right metrics.

Here are five data points to track when it comes to recruitment and retention:

Read More

Tags: HR, employers, health insurance small employers, hr software, employer digest, employee benefit adviser

Three healthcare resolutions for Democrats in 2018

Posted by Alex Tolbert on Fri, Jan 05, 2018 @ 07:01

Looking ahead to 2018

After Republicans failed to repeal the Affordable Care Act in 2017, some Democrats might be thinking that the issue is resolved—but that would be a mistake.

Republicans successfully repealed the law’s individual mandate through their tax bill, which leaves the fate of the U.S. healthcare system as uncertain as ever. Further, Republicans have said they are not giving up on repealing Obamacare in total, and the law still faces challenges related to affordability and access for many consumers.

So as Democrats look ahead to 2018, the party should remain focused on improving the healthcare system, while staying vigilant when it comes to repeal. Here are three healthcare resolutions for the party.

Read More

Tags: Affordable Care Act, health insurance, obamacare, marketplace, universal healthcare, individual market, Bernie Sanders, Huffington Post, single-payer, tim kaine

IRS delays 1095-C reporting deadline (again)

Posted by Sarah Weinstein on Wed, Jan 03, 2018 @ 08:01

IRS announces extension for distributing 1095-Cs to employees

The Internal Revenue Service announced this week they were extending the deadline for employers to distribute 1095-Cs and 1095-Bs to employees. Originally, employers had until Jan. 31 to distribute these forms but now have until March 2. 

Similar to last year when deadlines were extended, the announcement stated the extension was a result of "a substantial number of employers, insurers, and other providers of minimum essential coverage need[ing] additional time beyond the January 31, 2018, due date to gather and analyze the information and prepare the 2017 Forms 1095-B and 1095-C to be furnished to individuals." 

While this is good news for employers, there is some fine print to read. The IRS did not change the deadline for filing Forms 1094 and 1095 with the IRS itself. This means employers filing these forms by mail will need to submit by Feb. 28 and those filing electronically (required for employers filing more than 250 forms) by April 2nd. 

However, just because the deadline is extended, doesn't mean reporting should be. Here are a few reasons you (and your clients) should aim to file your 1094-Cs and 1095-Cs in January. 

Read More

Tags: health insurance, employer health benefits, group benefits, healthcare costs, 1095-c, employer digest, ACA-compliant, benefits administration

Financial advisors: Your clients have anxiety around healthcare costs in retirement

Posted by John Whaling on Fri, Dec 29, 2017 @ 12:12

How expensive can healthcare really be in retirement?

How expensive can healthcare really be in retirement? These sentiments are reflected in other surveys as well. According to a 2014 Merrill Lynch study, Health and Retirement: Planning for the Great Unknown, 41 percent of Americans pinpoint future healthcare costs as their greatest financial concern.

Surprisingly, that number jumps to 54 percent and 60 percent for pre-retirees with over $250K and $5 million, respectively. Despite these worries, only 15 percent of pre-retirees have planned for these expenses.

Why are these pre-retirees so worried? How expensive can healthcare really be in retirement? Many studies attempt to estimate how much retirees can expect to spend, and they estimate healthcare could cost between $200K and $700K per couple. No matter how you cut it, healthcare is material to the financial well-being of most Americans.

Read More

Tags: Medicare, Bernard Health, retirement, financial planner, financial advisors, healthcare extension, medicare costs

2018 healthcare resolutions for Republicans

Posted by Alex Tolbert on Wed, Dec 27, 2017 @ 09:12

Looking ahead to 2018

When it comes to healthcare, the events of 2017 were probably not what many Republicans hoped for.

This time last year, repeal of the Affordable Care Act seemed imminent. Even up until a few months ago, rolling back the health reform law still seemed pretty likely. But after multiple proposals to repeal the ACA failed to pass, efforts are now at a standstill.

As Republicans look toward 2018, all the hopes for repeal are pinned on the party’s tax bill. The bill currently includes a provision that would repeal the individual mandate, setting the party up to reshape the U.S. healthcare system in the coming year.

So as the party looks back on the lessons of 2017 and into the new year, here are three healthcare “New Year’s Resolutions” for Republicans.

Read More

Tags: Affordable Care Act, health insurance, obamacare, marketplace, universal healthcare, individual market, Bernie Sanders, Huffington Post, single-payer, tim kaine

Email Subscription

Search Our Site

Most Popular Posts

Latest Posts