Publications and Resources

Featured Publications

The Council regularly provides intelligence and analysis to its members and offers policy expertise to lawmakers and the general public.

Tuesday, August 13, 2019
Council Letter to HHS/OCR Regarding Proposed Regulations on Nondiscrimination in Health and Health Education Programs or Activities
In written comments to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of Civil Rights (OCR) on August 13, the Council recommended that employer group waiver plans (EGWPs) be excepted the Affordable Care Act's (ACA) nondiscrimination provisions. We also expressed strong support for the elimination of "taglines" and notices as is currently required.
Monday, August 5, 2019
Group Letter to Senate Regarding 'Surprise' Medical Billing
On August 5, the Council joined with 32 other employer and organized labor groups on a letter to the U.S. Senate highlighting our key concerns related to surprise billing and urging rejection of mandatory arbitration as a means of resolving payment disputes.
Thursday, August 1, 2019
Input Needed Supporting Repeal of the ACA 'Cadillac Tax'
Please complete the short survey regarding the potential impact of the Affordable Care Act's 40% "Cadillac Tax." Your input – which will remain anonymous – is essential in our efforts to repeal the tax. In particular, we need examples where the most expensive health plan you sponsor is not necessarily the one with the "richest" benefits.
Thursday, August 1, 2019
Council strongly endorses Retirement Security Preservation Act
WASHINGTON, DC – "We applaud Senators and longtime retirement policy champions Rob Portman (R-OH) and Ben Cardin (D-MD) for introducing the Retirement Security Preservation Act (RSPA), legislation that will provide immediate relief for defined benefit plan sponsors and participants," Dudley said. The legislation was included in the The Setting Every Community up for Retirement Enhancement (SECURE) Act (H.R. 1994), approved by the U.S. House of Representatives by a vote of 419-6. "This bill and this issue highlight the importance of enacting the bipartisan SECURE Act and sending it to the president's desk after the Senate returns in the fall."
Wednesday, July 31, 2019
DOL/EBSA Final Regulations Regarding Open MEPs (Association Retirement Plans and Other Multiple Employer Plans)
This document contains a final regulation under title I of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) that expands access to affordable quality retirement saving options by clarifying the circumstances under which an employer group or association or a professional employer organization (PEO) may sponsor a multiple employer workplace retirement plan under title I of ERISA (as opposed to providing an arrangement that constitutes multiple separate retirement plans). The final regulation does this by clarifying that employer groups or associations and PEOs can, when satisfying certain criteria, constitute "employers" within the meaning of ERISA for purposes of establishing or maintaining an individual account "employee pension benefit plan" within the meaning of ERISA.
Tuesday, July 30, 2019
Group Letter in Support of Pension and Budget Integrity Act of 2019 (H.R. 4035)
The Council expresses support for the Pension and Budget Integrity Act (PBIA) of 2019 (H.R. 4035) in a group letter with other employers and benefit organizations. The Pension and Budget Integrity Act of 2019 would ensure Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) premiums are used only to fund the PBGC's mission, as Congress originally intended.
Monday, July 29, 2019
Status and Overview of Recently Proposed and Enacted State Fiduciary Laws and Regulations (Courtesy of Davis & Harman, LLP)
Status and Overview of Recently Proposed and Enacted State Fiduciary Laws and Regulations (Courtesy of Davis & Harman, LLP)
Friday, July 26, 2019
Nondiscrimination Testing Reform: Without Retirement Legislation Soon, Many Participants Could Lose Future Pension Benefits as of January 1, 2020
Nondiscrimination Testing Reform: Without Retirement Legislation Soon, Many Participants Could Lose Future Pension Benefits as of January 1, 2020
Tuesday, July 23, 2019
Council Letter to Treasury/IRS Requesting Extension of Frozen Plan Nondiscrimination Rule Relief
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) should extend existing relief from the imposition of nondiscrimination rules on frozen defined benefit pension plans, the Council said in a July 23 letter to the agency.
Thursday, July 18, 2019
Testimony of Kent Mason (Davis & Harman, LLP) on behalf of the Council before the New Jersey Bureau of Securities Hearing regarding Proposed Fiduciary Duty Rule
Mason, testifying on behalf of the American Benefits Council, said that the rule should be made fully inapplicable to ERISA plans in order to avoid ERISA preemption issues. ERISA preempts state laws that "relate to" ERISA plans, which the Proposal clearly does. Further, the courts' narrow interpretations of ERISA's savings clause leave little doubt that the savings clause would not apply in this case. Mason cautioned that the likelihood of a lawsuit on ERISA preemption grounds is high if the final rule applies at all to ERISA plans.
Wednesday, July 17, 2019
'The Latest' Webinar Notice: Legislative and Regulatory Update – Final Rules on HRAs and Individual Market Coverage
The American Benefits Council will hold a webinar on Thursday, July 18, at 2 p.m. Eastern Time to discuss the final regulations that expand health reimbursement arrangements (HRAs) to permit employers to offer a new "Individual Coverage HRA" for employees to purchase health insurance on the individual market. The regulations also create a new "Excepted Benefit HRA" of up to $1,800 that may be offered to employees in addition to group health plan coverage. Employers can begin to offer Individual Coverage HRAs or Excepted Benefit HRAs for plans beginning on or after January 1, 2020.
Wednesday, July 17, 2019
Council opposes arbitration amendment to 'surprise' medical billing legislation
WASHINGTON, DC – Ilyse Schuman, senior vice president, health policy, for the American Benefits Council, issued the following statement today urging the U.S. House of Representatives Energy and Commerce Committee to reject any amendment to "surprise" medical billing legislation that would institute mandatory arbitration as a means of resolving billing disputes.
Wednesday, July 17, 2019
Employers welcome expansion of HSAs to permit pre-deductible coverage of chronic illness
WASHINGTON, DC – "We are pleased and proud that the Treasury Department is pursuing valuable guidance to increase the usefulness of Health Savings Accounts (HSAs)," American Benefits Council (Council) President James A. Klein said today. "Guidance issued today fulfills one of many HSA recommendations made by the Council in our report Magnifying A 2020 Vision: A Closer Look at Selected Proposals to Strengthen Employer-Sponsored Health Benefits. We have been diligently pursuing these proposals since 2014."
Tuesday, July 16, 2019
Council Letter to Senate Leadership Urging Passage of the Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement (SECURE) Act (H.R. 1994)
Council Letter to Senate Leadership Urging Passage of the Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement (SECURE) Act (H.R. 1994)
Monday, July 15, 2019
Contact House members before July 17 to urge 'yes' vote on 'Cadillac Tax' repeal bill
Please contact your elected official in the U.S. House Representatives – and those with whom your company has a relationship – to urge support for the Middle Class Health Tax Repeal Act (H.R. 748) when it comes up for a vote on the House floor on Wednesday, July 17. A strong bipartisan vote in favor of the bill will be essential in prompting the U.S. Senate to take up the bill as soon as possible.
Sunday, July 14, 2019
Council Letter to House Leadership Urging Passage of Middle Class Health Tax Repeal Act (H.R. 748)
Council Letter to House Leadership Urging Support of Middle Class Health Tax Repeal Act (H.R. 748)
Thursday, July 11, 2019
NEWS: Council commends approval of Energy and Commerce 'surprise' billing legislation
WASHINGTON, DC – The American Benefits Council applauds the subcommittee for approving legislation that protects patients from "surprise" medical bills without undermining access to high-quality, high-value networks or increasing health care costs for individuals and employer providers of health coverage.
Wednesday, July 10, 2019
Council Letter to House Energy and Commerce Committee Health Subcommittee Supporting No Surprises Act
Council Letter to House Energy and Commerce Committee Health Subcommittee Supporting No Surprises Act
Monday, July 8, 2019
Webinar Notice: Cybersecurity and Privacy Issues for Retirement Plan Sponsors
The American Benefits Council will hold a Benefits Briefing webinar on Monday, July 8, at 2 p.m. Eastern Time, to review looming cybersecurity and privacy issues of interest to retirement plan sponsors.
Monday, July 8, 2019
Benefits Briefing Presentation Slides: Cybersecurity and Privacy Issues for Retirement Plan Sponsors
The American Benefits Council will hold a Benefits Briefing webinar on Monday, July 8, at 2 p.m. Eastern Time, to review looming cybersecurity and privacy issues of interest to retirement plan sponsors.