The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) recently announced that almost 2,000 employers were accepted into the Early Retiree Reinsurance Program created by the health care reform legislation. These employers will start receiving reimbursements for employee claims from the program this fall.
The approved applicants represent the broad spectrum of the economy, including businesses (32 percent), state and local governments (26 percent), union sponsors (22 percent), schools and other educational institutions (14 percent), and nonprofits (five percent).
For a list of all the approved applicants, go to www.healthcare.gov/law/provisions/retirement/states/azcompanies.html. If you want to see what organizations from your state have been approved, you can find an interactive map at www.healthcare.gov/news/factsheets/early_retiree_reinsurance_program.html.
The temporary reinsurance program is designed to help employers maintain health benefits for early retirees and will provide $5 billion for employer health plans that offer coverage to early retirees who are ages 55 to 64. Reimbursement will be made to plans on behalf of early retirees and their spouses, surviving spouses, and dependents for certain claims between $15,000 and $90,000.
The reinsurance subsidy will be available through the earlier of January 1, 2014, or the date the funds are exhausted. HHS is continuing to accept and review applications for the program, and applications for the program, application instructions, and application submission do’s and don’ts can be located at www.errp.gov. Interested parties can also call a new hotline at (877) 574-3777 or (877) 574-ERRP.
Keep up with the latest developments in employee benefits with Benefits Complete Compliance