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  • News Updates
    2022 Limits for HDHPs and HSA Contributions Announced - 5/11/2021
    The IRS announced the following 2022 limits for high deductible health plans (HDHPs) and health savings accounts (HSAs).

    In 2022, individual HSA contribution limits will rise to $3,650; the family HSA contribution limit will rise to $7,300.

    The HDHP minimum deductible limit for individual coverage will stay the same in 2021 at $1,400, with family coverage remaining at $2,800. Additionally, the HDHP maximum out-of-pocket expenses will change under this provision. For individuals, it changes to $7,050 and for families, $14,100.

    These limits become effective January 1, 2021.
    IRS Announces Extension of HSA Contribution Deadline - 3/17/2021
    The IRS extended the federal tax return filing deadline from April 15, 2021 to May 17, 2021, according to an announcement on March 17th.

    The federal tax return filing date extension also applies to Form 1040 and allows HSA account holders to make HSA contributions for the 2020 tax year until May 17. Three states affected by the winter storms, Texas, Oklahoma, and Louisiana, were granted an additional extension. The filing date for 5498s has been extended to June 30, 2021.
    IRS Announces 2021 FSA and TRA Limits - 10/29/2020
    The IRS announced FSA limits for 2021 would remain at $2,750.

    However, the IRS also announced that the annual maximum carryover will be increased to $550 (a $50 increase from the previous $500 limit).

    Additionally, the IRS did not increase TRA maximum benefits. They will remain at a maximum of $270 for the 2021 tax year.
    2021 Limits for HDHPs and HSA Contributions Announced - 5/22/2020
    The IRS announced the following 2021 limits for high deductible health plans (HDHPs) and health savings accounts (HSAs).

    In 2021, individual HSA contribution limits will rise to $3,600; the family HSA contribution limit will rise to $7,200.

    The HDHP minimum deductible limit for individual coverage will stay the same in 2021 at $1,400, with family coverage remaining at $2,800. Additionally, the HDHP maximum out-of-pocket expenses will change under this provision. For individuals, it changes to $7,000 and for families, $14,000.

    These limits become effective January 1, 2021.
    What the Cadillac Tax Repeal Means for Employers - 12/20/2019
    In December, 2019, President Trump signed spending legislation that will repeal of an excise tax on high-cost health plans, known as the Cadillac Tax. The Cadillac Tax, which was scheduled to take effect in 2022, would have imposed a 40 percent excise tax on employer health plans, deemed by many to be too generous.

    Are you curious what this could mean for you and your employees? At Further, we have been working hard to bring awareness to this tax and advocate for the repeal on behalf of our partners and clients. With the Cadillac Tax repeal, effective December 21, 2019, employees will continue to have access to their health spending and savings accounts that they rely on to pay for care today, and employers can continue to offer great health benefits without the worry of potential taxes.

    At Further, our mission is to provide resources and tools to our members that empower them to spend every day wisely. There are many online sources that provide more background on this tax, including information from the National Association of Health Underwriters and the Tax Policy Center.
    IRS Releases 2020 FSA and TRA Limits - 11/7/2019
    Issued Wednesday November 6, 2019, the IRS has raised the Flexible Spending Account (FSA) limit to $2,750 for 2020. Additionally, Transportation Reimbursement Account (TRA) expense limits for parking and transit have been set at $270/month.

    For groups that already set their contribution limits to the 2019 amount ($2,700), Further will automatically update that amount to the new 2020 limit of $2,750 unless notified otherwise within the next 30 days.
    New California law requires FSA employers to notify employees of withdrawal deadlines - 10/22/2019
    California has enacted a law that requires employers with flexible spending accounts (which includes health FSAs, dependent care or adoption assistance FSAs) to notify account participants of any deadline(s) to withdraw funds before the end of the plan year.

    The law will go into effect on January 1, 2020.

    The law does not give insight into when the required notices are to be provided but notes the notice must be provided in two different forms, one of which may be electronic. Permitted forms of notice include (but are not limited to) email, telephone, text message, postal mail or an in-person notification.

    The Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) likely preempts the law as applied to health FSAs that are under ERISA. DCAPs and adoption assistance FSAs are rarely subject to ERISA, nor are health FSAs that are governmental or church plans; the law is potentially applicable to these programs. Groups are advised to work with benefit counsel to determine if compliance is required.

    More information on this new law can be found on the California Legislative Information site here.

    If you have additional questions about these changes or impacts, please contact a Further representative.
    HDHP Preventive Care Benefits Expanded - 7/17/2019
     
     
    On July 17, 2019, the IRS issued guidance that expands health savings account (HSA) qualified expenses. HSAs will now cover additional services and items used to treat chronic conditions, such as preventative care. This guidance expands the list of preventative care benefits covered by high deductible health plans (HDHPs) under section 223(c)(2) of the Internal Revenue Code (Code).

    The change took effect on July 17, 2019.

    The list of approved preventive care items and details regarding the notice are provided here.
    On Oct. 12, President Donald Trump signed an executive order that directs federal regulators to issue new rules regarding health reimbursement arrangements (HRAs), association group health plans, and short-term health policies. President Trump has asked agencies to issue new regulations broadening the use and availability of HRAs, specifically allowing for non-group HRAs. The agencies have 120 days to issue proposed regulations.

    Currently, the existing rules surrounding HRAs have not changed. Further is continuing to monitor events.
  • COVID-19 Updates
    Further white paper detailing COVID-related spending account changes available for download - 6/14/2021
    Passed in March 2020, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act was the first piece of federal legislation addressing the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. This act included important provisions for health spending accounts, including expanding the list of eligible expenses that qualify for reimbursement to include over-the-counter medications.

    Since then, Congress, the IRS and the DOL have made several regulatory changes and announcements to address the continued impact of the COVID-19 virus. Read our white paper to learn more.
    American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARPA) Increases DCAP Maximum - 3/24/2021
    On March 11, 2021, the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARPA) was signed into law. This law increases the maximum amount that may be excluded from an employee’s gross income in 2021 under a dependent care assistance program (DCAP).

    The DCAP maximum amounts increased from $5,000 to $10,500 for married parents filing taxes jointly or for single parents, and from $2,500 to $5,250 for married parents filing separately per calendar year. Please note that these limits apply to the 2021 tax year, and that non-calendar year plan participants should take this into consideration when making annual elections.
    DOL Releases Guidance on Financial Account Runout Extensions - 3/23/2021
    On February 26, 2021, the Department of Labor (DOL) released guidance on the duration of the spending account changes provided in earlier disaster relief efforts. In summary, the guidance indicates the end of the runout period will be extended by one year. This impacts employees with FSA, HRA and HIA accounts.
    DOL Releases Guidance on Extended COBRA Deadlines - 2/27/2021
    On February 26, 2021, the Department of Labor (DOL) released guidance that extended COBRA deadlines due to disaster relief efforts. The guidance indicates “reasonable accommodations” should be allowed for individuals with an election window/payment extension deadline that may have expired. It did not define reasonable accommodation.

    The American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) includes a 100% subsidy of COBRA coverage for “assistance eligible individuals” (AEIs). The subsidy is available to AEIs from April 1, 2021, through September 30, 2021.
    DOL Releases Guidance on Extended COBRA Deadlines - 2/27/2021
    On February 26, 2021, the Department of Labor (DOL) released guidance that extended COBRA deadlines due to disaster relief efforts. The guidance indicates “reasonable accommodations” should be allowed for individuals with an election window/payment extension deadline that may have expired. It did not define reasonable accommodation.

    The American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA)includes a 100% subsidy of COBRA coverage for “assistance eligible individuals” (AEIs). The subsidy is available to AEIs from April 1, 2021, through September 30, 2021.
    COVID-19 Relief Bill, Consolidated Appropriations Act (CAA), Impacts FSA Plans - 12/29/2020
    The COVID relief bill, the Consolidated Appropriations Act (CAA), 2021, was signed into law on Sunday, December 27, 2020. The legislation includes several items that impact medical flexible spending accounts (FSAs) and dependent care assistant plan (DCAP) accounts.

    The changes include a carryover extension and grace period adjustment. It also allows medical FSA participants who terminated during the 2020 or 2021 plan year to spend down their unused balances for expenses incurred through the end of the plan year in which the termination occurred. For FSA and DCAP, the bill allows the option for plans to allow a prospective change in election amounts for plan years ending in 2021 without a corresponding change in status event. Finally, the bill increased the maximum age of eligible DCAP dependents by one year, which allows employees to use their DCAP to pay for dependent care up to the age of 14.

    Employers will need to determine whether to amend their plan document due to the COVID relief legislation and are able to do so until December 31, 2022 for 2021 plan yar changes.

    Our webinar featuring Further’s Chief Compliance Officer Ryan McArton, covers the bill and what employers should consider before choosing to amend their plan.
    CARES Act Expands Eligible Expenses to Include OTC and Feminine Hygiene Products - 3/27/2020
    The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act was signed into law on Friday, March 27th. One component of the law was an expansion of products eligible for reimbursement from health savings accounts (HSAs) and medical flexible spending accounts (FSAs).

    Changes include the addition of over-the-counter (OTC) drugs and medicines, which previously were only eligible for reimbursement with a prescription. Additionally, feminine hygiene products such as tampons, pads, liners, cups, and sponges are now eligible as well. Members may use an HSA or FSA to purchase those items, or file reimbursement claims. These are permanent changes.

    The CARES Act also addressed telehealth accessibility. We encourage those interested in telehealth to check with your health plan provider to see what your coverage is.

    For more information on the COVID-19 pandemic and the effect on spending accounts, visit our COVID-19 FAQ guide.
    IRS Extends HSA Contribution Deadline to July 15, 2020 - 3/20/2020
    On March 20, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, IRS Notice 2020-17 extended the federal tax filing deadline by three months to July 15, 2020. Included with that, health savings account (HSA) holders now have until July 15 to make contributions to their HSA and count toward their 2019 contribution totals.

    The 2019 maximum HSA contributions are $3,500 for those with individual plans and $7,000 for those with family plans. If the member is 55 years old or older, the member can contribute an additional $1,000 toward their HSA for either an individual or family plan.

    For more information on the COVID-19 pandemic and the effect on spending accounts, visit our COVID-19 FAQ guide.
    IRS Allows HDHP Compatibility With No Cost for COVID-19 Plan Coverage - 3/12/2020
    On Wednesday, March 11, the IRS released Notice 2020-15 that states high deductible health plan (HDHP) participants will not lose eligibility if their health plan provides testing and treatment of the coronavirus (COVID-19) at no cost or with a deductible below the minimum HDHP deductible.

    The Notice is in response to nationwide preparation of COVID-19, including many health plans announcing coverage for testing and treatment.

    More information about this Notice can be found on the IRS website.