Viewing posts categorised under: Employee Benefits

AW360 Education Event: Healthcare Reform

Posted on June 16, 2016

At AW Welt Ambrisco, one of our pillars to effective Risk Management is education. Which is why we offer several AW360 Educational Series seminars throughout the year on topics business owners and managers want to know. Our next event couldn’t be more timely – join us on Tuesday, June 21st for “Affordable Care Act: The Fog is Beginning to Clear” with Employee Benefits specialists Michelle Wolter and Eric Upchurch. Topics for this luncheon seminar include: (more…)

Webinar: ACA Reporting & Marketplace Update

Posted on May 12, 2016

This year has brought many changes to employer requirements underHealthcareReform the Affordable Care Act. With these new regulations, forms, deadlines combined with marketplace changes on the horizon, many employers are left to blindly navigate the 2016 health insurance landscape. However there are resources available to help business owners and HR managers understand what their responsibilities are when it comes to health coverage.

Join us on May 24th as Employee Benefit Specialists Michelle Wolter and Eric Upchurch review critical Affordable Care Act reporting and marketplace updates for 2016. HR professionals are facing challenging ACA compliance requirements and complex employee benefit regulations. If your organization is trying to get a better understanding of the 2016 changes and requirements, attend this informative, complimentary webinar. Topics include:

  • Recent CMS reporting requirements
  • ACA reporting updates, definitions and end of transition relief
  • Iowa marketplace changes
  • Resources to help ensure compliance

Tuesday, May 24, 2016 | 12:00-12:30 PM CST

Register now:

Healthcare Costs Making Employers Proactive in 2016

Posted on April 20, 2016

shutterstock_174875483Companies of all sizes are in the process of making significant changes to their employer-provided healthcare benefits. Concerned about employee retention, the looming Cadillac tax and rising healthcare costs, employers have decided to be proactive now in order to help manage costs later.

Significant Changes to Healthcare

Changes that many businesses have made to their existing plans include:

  • Alterations that help manage costs
  • Changes that increase employee participation
  • Modifications that improve cost sharing strategies
  • Changes that will improve employee health
  • Modifications that will meet new healthcare reform requirements
  • Changes that prepare businesses for the implementation of the Cadillac Tax in 2020

Business will Exceed Excise Tax Threshold by 2018

Half of US businesses are afraid that their current plans leave them vulnerable when the Cadillac Tax is implemented in four years. Approximately 60% of businesses fear that their healthcare costs will exceed the excise tax threshold in two years. Rather than waiting to see if the implementation of the excise tax will be delayed again, companies have decided to start planning for the worst now.

Changes Employers Are Making

Companies of all sizes are preparing for the Cadillac Tax by:

  • Trying to improve the overall health of the US population with wellness initiatives
  • Changing the value of their current plan’s design
  • Making HSA contributions post-tax

In addition, small businesses have also decided to:

  • Move their employee to a public exchange
  • Reducing coverages to spouses or part-time employees
  • Offering minimum essential levels of coverage

If you believe your current employer-provided health care benefits are vulnerable to the Cadillac Tax, you can learn more about your options by clicking here.

Restaurant Insurance Coverages, Risks, and Compliance

Posted on April 13, 2016

Restaurants present one of the most complex challenges in business insurance. The risks are numerous and diversified, there’s a high degree of variance between individual establishments, there are numerous workers performing a wealth of different tasks (many of which qualify as potentially dangerous), and there are regulatory compliance issues at local, state, and federal levels. Running a restaurant is already a highly competitive endeavor, with thin margins and stressful business decisions. Whether procuring a one-stop solution, or acquiring coverages individually, your foodservice establishment has to find a way to cover all of your significant risks, minimize cost of coverage, and adhere to all applicable compliance standards. Restaurant coverages can include:

  • Workers’ Compensation
  • Employment Practices Liability
  • Business Property Insurance
  • Cyber Liability Protection
  • Business Continuity Coverage
  • Commercial Auto Insurance
  • Liquor Liability Coverage
  • and more…

These are just a sampling of some of the more common and important coverages applicable to restaurants, bars, and other foodservice venues. In addition to these numerous coverages, there are compliance issues. While workers’ compensation and commercial auto thresholds are specified on a state-by-state basis, there are also state and federal employee benefits requirements related to the Affordable Care Act. Is your organization compliant? Do you know what levels of coverage you possess for each insurance product you’ve procured? Is it enough? Is it too much? Do you coverages (and the company that provides them) enable your business, or drag it down? Do your benefits offerings promote the recruitment of strong new talent, or turn it away? If you can’t readily answer these questions, restaurant insurance forensics are in order. To learn more about your coverages, ask AW Welt.

Latest Version of Publication 463 Released for 2015 Tax Returns

Posted on March 22, 2016

shutterstock_174966584 - CopyThe IRS recently released the latest version of Publication 463 for use in preparing 2015 tax returns. The publication covers travel, entertainment, gift, and car expenses, explaining when and how much employees and sole proprietors may deduct work-related expenses on their federal income tax returns. Additionally, it specifies which records must be kept to substantiate the expenses, and where and how to append the deductible expenses.

The document remains largely the same since the 2014 fiscal year, with minor updates to the standard business mileage rate and cost-of-living adjustments, among others. Is your business and/or household fully prepared with the necessary documentation to optimize your tax filings for 2015? Do you have a solid grasp on the changes in itemized deductions since last year? To learn more, contact us.