Compliance Corner
January 20, 2021

COVID-19 Updates

COVID-19-Related Benefits Compliance Resources Available


Podcast Episode 96: President Biden’s Pandemic Response Proposal
2021 Government Funding Bill Webinar – Recording Available
February Get Wise Wednesdays Webinar – Register Now
Reminder: Form W-2 Cost of Coverage Reporting
Reminder: Upcoming IRC 6055 and 6056 Reporting Deadlines

Healthcare Reform

IRS Issues Final Rules Applying Employer Mandate and Nondiscrimination Rules to ICHRAs

Federal Health Updates

DOL Finalizes Rules on Independent Contractors
CMS Issues Toolkit for Insurers re: COVID-19 Vaccines
EEOC Opinion Letter Discusses Relationship between ICHRAs and ADEA
EEOC Proposes Amendments to Wellness Program Regulations under the ADA and GINA

Retirement Updates

IRS Publishes Instructions for 2020 Form 5500-EZ
IRS Updates Procedure for Determination Letter Requests
DOL Provides Guidance on Missing Participants
IRS Releases 2021 Instructions for Forms 1099-R and 5498
IRS Finalizes 2020 Form 8955-SSA Instructions

State and Territory Updates

New York


FAQ: What are some group health plan compliance issues that employers should consider at the beginning of 2021?


Podcast Episode 96: President Biden’s Pandemic Response Proposal

In this episode, Chase Cannon and Suzanne Spradley review newly inaugurated President Biden’s pandemic response proposal, the American Rescue Plan. Chase outlines the proposal overall, then turns his attention to the proposal’s expansion of FFCRA leave to all-sized employers until the end of September 2021. Chase and Suzanne discuss additional leave expansion, and the proposal’s COBRA subsidies for those impacted by a pandemic-related furlough or layoffs, and the expansion of premium tax credits. The two close with a short discussion of potential Biden executive orders and their impact on proposed regulations regarding wellness programs, independent contractors and more.

Every other week, NFP's legal experts make the subject of compliance personal for a wide audience. By breaking down the daunting details of emerging policies and bridging the gap between legislation and what it means for the listener, Chase Cannon and Suzanne Spradley make compliance issues relatable and relevant. Visit our Soundcloud page every two weeks for the most up-to-date episode.

Listen on Google Play Music

2021 Government Funding Bill Webinar – Recording Available

On January 6, 2020, the NFP benefits compliance team broadcast a webinar discussing the annual appropriations bill and its implications for employee benefits plans. The recording is available here.

February Get Wise Wednesdays Webinar – Register Now

The beginning of 2021 is already getting off to a busy start. With the end of one presidential administration, the beginning of a new one, and an ongoing COVID crisis, there is a lot going on from a benefits compliance standpoint. Join us for a discussion of the most recent government guidance and/or legislation concerning employee benefits.

2021 Benefits Compliance is Like a Box of Chocolates
February 17, 2021
2:00 to 3:00 p.m. CT (3:00 to 4:00 p.m. ET)
Register Now »

A recording will be posted to the NFP Client Learning Portal within 48 hours of the live webinar. Those listening to a recorded webinar aren’t eligible for recertification credit.

All programs are pending approval for 1.0 (general) recertification credit hour toward PHR, SPHR and GPHR recertification through the HR Certification Institute. For more information about certification or recertification, visit the HR Certification Institute website at

Reminder: Form W-2 Cost of Coverage Reporting

Large employers must report the cost of group health coverage provided to employees on Form W-2. The requirement applies to employers that filed 250 or more Forms W-2 in 2020. Employer aggregation rules do not apply for this purpose. In other words, the number of Forms W-2 is calculated separately without consideration of controlled groups. Indian tribal governments, sponsors of self-funded church plans, and employers contributing to a multiemployer plan are exempt from the Form W-2 reporting requirement.

Reminder: Upcoming IRC 6055 and 6056 Reporting Deadlines

Employers that were ALEs in 2020 must comply with IRC Section 6056 reporting in early 2021. Specifically, ALEs must complete and distribute a Form 1095-C to full-time employees by March 2, 2021 (the IRS changed this from January 31, 2021). The form should detail whether the employee was offered minimum value, affordable coverage during 2020. The forms may be mailed, electronically delivered or delivered by hand (although proof of delivery in some manner is recommended).

If an employer sponsored a self-insured plan during 2020, it must comply with Section 6055 reporting in 2021. Self-insured employers with 50 or more FTEs must complete Section III of Form 1095-C detailing which months the employee (and any applicable spouse and dependents) had coverage under the employer’s plan. If the self-insured employer has fewer than 50 FTEs, it must complete and distribute a Form 1095-B with such information. Again, the forms must be delivered to employees by March 2, 2021.

Employers must also file the forms with the IRS by March 1, 2021 (as February 28, 2021, falls on a Sunday), if filing by paper, and March 31, 2021, if filing electronically. Those that are filing 250 or more forms are required to file electronically. Lastly, the employer is required to file the transmittal Form 1094-C (if filing Forms 1095-C) or Form 1094-B (if filing Forms 1095-B).

As a reminder, the IRS recently provided penalty relief for employers that will allow them to forego distributing the Form 1095-B to individuals. This comes after the IRS accepted comments on the necessity of the Forms 1095-B now that the individual mandate penalty has been zeroed out. If employers post a notice on their website that the document is available upon request, and fulfil any such request within 30 days, then they will not have to distribute the Forms 1095-B to covered individuals. But keep in mind that there is no such penalty relief for Form 1095-C.

Form 1094-B »
Form 1095-B »
Form 1094-C »
Form 1095-C »
Instructions for Forms 1094-B and 1095-B »
Instructions for Forms 1094-C and 1095-C »