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An ‘EZ’ Solution for your Employee Benefit Plan Reporting and Disclosure Requirements

An ‘EZ’ Solution for your Employee Benefit Plan Reporting and Disclosure Requirements

By on Mar 18, 2019 in Best Practices, Blog, Compliance, Employee Benefits, EZERISA Plan, HR Consulting | 0 comments

An ‘EZ’ Solution for your Employee Benefit Plan Reporting and Disclosure Requirements Our past two blog posts were about the requirement to report and disclose information on employee benefits plans.  If you are feeling a bit overwhelmed by this, especially if you didn’t know about these requirements before, we have a solution to help! OA’s Platinum Partner status with EZ ERISAPlan makes it easier than ever for you to meet your obligations and comply with the rigors of ERISA and HIPAA and related laws, all with the industry leading warranties. We can provide you with the solutions in an EZ and cost affordable way. If you need all of these, there is an All-in-One Subscription that provides all of these to you at a bundled price! No Worries It’s Warrantied! The EZ ERISAPlan tool provides our clients with an industry leading written warranty. Unlike other providers that have wishy-washy contract provisions to protect you, we protect you with our two-part Warranty: $1,000,000 of Penalty Protection! If you are penalized on a document that is produced on the EZ ERISAPlan site, the Warranty covers those penalties to $1,000,000. Legal Services Warranty! If you are audited by the government on an EZ ERISAPlan document, EZ ERISAPlan will send you a lawyer for free! This is a simple and complete solution to solve your compliance requirements…contact us today to learn more and ensure your plans are covered!...

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Reporting and Disclosure Guidance for Employee Benefit Plans… Part 2

Reporting and Disclosure Guidance for Employee Benefit Plans… Part 2

By on Mar 13, 2019 in Best Practices, Blog, Compliance, Employee Benefits, HR Consulting | 0 comments

Reporting and Disclosure Guidance for Employee Benefit Plans… Part 2 The Reporting and Disclosure Guide for Employee Benefit Plans provided by the Department of Labor’s Employee Benefits Security Administration is an excellent tool for both employers and employees when it comes to understanding reporting rules under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 [ERISA]. The Guide provides information on the following topics: Basic Disclosure Requirements for Pension and Welfare Benefit Plans Additional Disclosure Requirements for Welfare Benefit Plans That Are Group Health Plans Additional Disclosure Requirements for Pension Plans Pension Insurance Premiums – single employer and multiemployer defined benefit plans Standard Terminations and Distress Terminations Overview of Form 5500 and Form M-1 Annual Reporting Requirements The starting point of basic disclosure requirements for pension and welfare benefit plans is the Summary Plan Description [SPD]. This document informs participants about their plan and how it operates, which includes all benefits, rights, and obligations under the plan. All participants or beneficiaries receiving benefits of the plan must receive this document and it must be disclosed to participants within 90 days of becoming covered by the plan or within 90 days after first receiving benefits for plan beneficiaries. For the complete list of disclosure requirements and all other information regarding retirement, health, and other workplace related benefits, visit the Department of Labor Employee Benefits Security Administration. Do you need assistance with your workforce strategy or other Human Resources consulting needs? Contact us and check out our blog for more helpful...

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Reporting and Disclosure Guidance for Employee Benefit Plans…Part 1

Reporting and Disclosure Guidance for Employee Benefit Plans…Part 1

By on Mar 6, 2019 in Best Practices, Blog, Compliance, Employee Benefits, HR Consulting | 0 comments

With the beginning of a new year, employers that offer employee benefit plans have many reporting and disclosure requirement deadlines that will be approaching before you know it. Employers often focus on reporting information on the retirement plans such as the pension, 401k, or 403b plan they offer, but are often unware that the same reporting and disclosure requirements may also apply to the welfare benefit plans, which include your medical, dental, life, disability, and other similar programs. For more assistance on reporting requirements for your employee benefit plans, refer to the Reporting and Disclosure Guide for Employee Benefit Plans provided on the Department of Labor’s website. Do you need assistance with your workforce strategy or other Human Resources consulting needs? Contact us and check out our blog for more helpful...

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Updated Ohio Civil Rights Commission Poster

Updated Ohio Civil Rights Commission Poster

By on Feb 20, 2019 in Best Practices, Blog, Compliance | 0 comments

Just a quick note to let you know that Ohio’s Fair Employment Law poster has been updated. These postings should be displayed in a conspicuous place in the workplace for all employees to see, such as a break room, copy room, or other common areas for employees. If your organization has multiple facilities in Ohio, postings must be displayed in each facility. For employees that work remotely from an office location, these policies and regulations should be sent to the employees, provided in hard copy form, or provided electronically for these employees to access as well. You can download your own copy here. Your payroll company may provide posters as part of their service at little or no cost. Check with them to see if they can provide these to you. There are paid services you can use that provide these posters. An internet search should be able to turn up a number of options…just be aware that while it may be more convenient to pay a service to provide these posters, especially if you operate in multiple jurisdictions, you can always find them for free at the local, state, and federal agencies. Do you need assistance with your workforce strategy or other Human Resources consulting needs? Contact us and check out our blog for more helpful...

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New Year’s Resolution #3: Audit your HR processes

New Year’s Resolution #3: Audit your HR processes

By on Jan 17, 2019 in Best Practices, Blog, Compliance, HR Operations Audit | 0 comments

This month we have been sending out reminders on HR best practices: reviewing and updating your employment posters and making sure your employee handbook is current.  Our last New Year’s HR resolution is to recommend you conduct an HR audit.  An HR audit is simply a review of processes and activities to ensure you are working efficiently, effectively, and in a compliant manner. There are probably many priorities you are dealing with right now.  You have probably just wrapped up your annual enrollment and are already working on performance reviews and merit increases. While you may not be able to dive into an audit until the second quarter, getting your plan together now can help you get started quickly once the end-of-the-year / beginning-of-the-year activities subside. It’s easy to fall into the trap of doing things the same way each year. But there are so many new tools to help get the HR paperwork handled more efficiently, it’s worth taking a step back and assessing what you are doing and ask yourself: Why is it done this way? Are there ways I solve similar problems in other aspects of my life that I can apply here? Where do I spend most of my time? Does it add value?  Do other perceive this work as meaningful? For any given process, if I review the number of steps involved, can I combine or reduce some? What else could I do if some of these other tasks took less time? How should you go about reviewing your HR processes? Break it down…start with employee relations, then work on training, recruitment, compensation, etc.  If you cannot conduct a complete audit at once, select a function and work on it over the month. The following month move on to the next one. Document the steps involved in each task and then see what can be reduced or combined. Pro tip: turn your documentation into a policy and procedure, so that if you need to train someone else to back you up, you have it all documented. Get some third-party input.  You can have an HR consultant spend some time performing the review for you. The value of this approach is that you can get...

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New Year’s Resolution #2: Review [and update] your employee handbook

New Year’s Resolution #2: Review [and update] your employee handbook

By on Jan 15, 2019 in Best Practices, Blog, Communication, Compliance | 0 comments

When was the last time you updated your employee handbook?  Y2K? Obama’s first term? When Breaking Bad was on TV?  It wouldn’t surprise us…you finally get one distributed and before you know it, years have passed.  The beginning of the new year is a good time to take a look at it and make any needed updates. What’s the best way of going about this? Go back and review any memos or emails you have sent employees over the past few years that communicate policy or procedure changes. If they are still in effect, you may want to incorporate them in your new handbook. Check in with line supervisors and ask them what works well and what needs to change. You may find that needs in their departments require changes to help them run their function more effectively. Determine if there are any legal or compliance updates at the local and state level.  Some municipalities have different requirements that the state as a whole.  And of course we know many states have particular compliance requirements that need to be met. Check to see if there have been any changes at the federal level as well.  A good place to start is the US Department of Labor website. What else should you think about? Keep in mind that the handbook can be used to convey important cultural messages.  Make sure that it reinforces these messages and is consistent with your other messages. While it is important to communicate employee rights and responsibilities, try to make it clear and easy for the lay person to understand.  Avoid technical or legal jargon as much as possible. Don’t put anything in that you don’t intend to enforce. This can lead to inconsistent treatment of employees. Don’t make it an exhaustive policies and procedures manual. Convey what an employee ‘needs to know’ and leave the detailed internal administrative procedures for your P&P manual. Before you distribute the manual to all of your employees, distribute it to the managers and supervisors and schedule time to review key changes and the sections most relevant to them [time and attendance, discipline, etc.].  The handbook should be a tool to help them lead more effectively…make sure they know...

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