ahca implications
Employee Benefits

If the AHCA is signed into law, then what?

Ed Oleksiak
Ed Oleksiak
Sr. Vice President, Employee Benefits

That’s a great question. The U.S. House of Representatives barely passed the American Health Care Act (AHCA) — 217 to 213 — recently after adding two critical amendments. The U.S. Senate gets to now tweak, argue, and create its own version of the bill. Assuming everyone agrees on the next version and President Trump signs it into law, what will be the impact?

Let’s look at a couple of the employer-related provisions…and the questions that come with each. And trust me, there are a lot of questions.

  • FSA caps removed: Cafeteria plans have an annual election requirement only allowing changes associated with a valid status change. Will the IRS allow for mid-year changes to allow employers to increase the maximum? Do employers really want to make a mid-year change? Are the payroll vendors and Flexible Spending Account (FSA) vendors ready to accept the mid-year changes?
  • Over-the-counter drugs eligible for FSA and HSA reimbursement: Will FSA and, to a lesser degree, Health Savings Account (HSA) vendors be prepared for the change? Will participant cards work for over-the-counter (OTC) purchases? How will 2017 purchases made before the law passes be treated?

Like I said…a lot of questions. So as you can see, we have things to think through if (and once) a final version is signed into law by President Trump. Uncertainty truly is the best way to describe the status of our nation’s healthcare system and what may be ahead for all of us. What I can tell you is that Holmes Murphy understands this impacts all of our clients. So as you can imagine, we’re sifting through the information and scenarios and will keep you updated as things progress or change. In the meantime, if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me or any of our staff!

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