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Miller & Chevalier HDHP/HSA Compliance Teleconference

Miller & Chevalier offered a teleconference exclusively to Blue Plans on compliance issues for High Deductible Health Plans (HDHPs) and Health Savings Accounts (HSAs). There are complicated and numerous rules regarding eligibility, contributions, and plan administration that come with significant penalties for noncompliance. This is the first time that Congress has strictly dictated health plan design and not all sales and marketing teams have fully embraced these requirements. The following are just a few of the consequences that could arise from a Plan getting this wrong:

  • Member HSA contributions and reimbursements could be subject to income and hefty excise taxes;
  • The Blue Plan may be liable to the employer account-holder and individual subscribers for breach of contract or misrepresentation;
  • Consumer fraud issues could arise if the Plan knowingly misrepresented that the HDHP was HSA qualified;
  • Any public identification of compliance issues could damage the reputation of the entire Blue brand, which could have a significant impact as Blue Plans currently have more HDHP enrolled members than any other health plan.

A particular challenge we've heard some of the Plans and the association raise is that, while there are significant risks with these products, it's often unclear who within the organization will take the lead on ensuring legal compliance.

During this teleconference, Susan Relland,* Fred Oliphant,* and Maria Jones discussed specific compliance tripwires, what to do if a Plan discovers an issue, and steps Plans can take now to help mitigate compliance risks.

*Former Miller & Chevalier attorney