Legislative Updates

  • 06/17/2021 12:49 PM | Anonymous member

    The United States will soon have a new federal holiday commemorating the end of slavery.

    The House voted 415-14 on June 16, 2021 to make Juneteenth, or June 19th, the 12th federal holiday. The bill now goes to President Joe Biden’s desk, and he is expected to sign it into law.

  • 06/17/2021 12:43 PM | Anonymous member

    The U.S. Supreme Court rejected a challenge to the Affordable Care Act's (ACA’s) individual mandate, holding that Texas and other states did not have a legal right to sue. The ruling leaves the ACA intact.

    As a result, employers should note that the health care law remains fully in effect, including all coverage obligations and reporting requirements.

  • 06/10/2021 12:14 PM | Anonymous member

    OSHA issues new guidance for employers and a specific emergency temporary standard.

  • 06/10/2021 11:07 AM | Anonymous member

    On June 8, Republican senators blocked the Paycheck Fairness Act, which would have barred prospective employers from asking about applicants' salary histories during the hiring process. The legislation narrowly passed the House of Representatives in April. 

  • 05/28/2021 3:29 PM | Anonymous member

    The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) updated its guidance and FAQs on workplace COVID-19 vaccination policies on May 28, stating that employers may request proof of vaccination status and offer incentives to encourage employees to receive the vaccine.

    Requesting proof that employees received a vaccination on their own is not a disability-related inquiry under the Americans with Disabilities Act, and therefore an employer may offer an incentive to employees to provide such proof, according to the EEOC. However, employers must consider reasonable accommodations for workers who decline to be vaccinated for religious or disability-related reasons.

    The EEOC also stated that if an employer administers the vaccination to its employees or contracts with a third party to administer the vaccinations, then any incentive the employer offers with the vaccination must not be so substantial as to be coercive.

  • 05/18/2021 1:16 PM | Anonymous member

    On May 18, 2021, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued Notice 2021-31 which contains much anticipated guidance needed to implement the COBRA subsidy provisions included in the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARPA). The guidance contains 86 questions and answers that address many issues that have arisen with respect to COBRA premium assistance under ARPA.

  • 05/14/2021 1:28 PM | Anonymous member

    The U.S. House of Representatives passed the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act in a 315-101 vote on May 14. The Senate will now consider the bill, which, if passed, will require employers to reasonably accommodate workers and job applicants who need accommodations due to pregnancy, childbirth and related medical conditions.

    Congress has been considering the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act since 2012 and even previously passed last year in the House. Meanwhile, 30 states have adopted their own versions of protections for pregnant employees.

    Read the bill here.

  • 05/12/2021 8:17 AM | Anonymous member

    South Dakota is ending its transfer of the federal government's pandemic-related unemployment assistance programs ($300) effective the week ending June 26, citing a recovering economy.

  • 05/11/2021 9:33 AM | Anonymous member

    Health savings account (HSA) contribution limits for 2022 are going up $50 for self-only coverage and $100 for family coverage, the IRS announced May 10, giving employers that sponsor high-deductible health plans (HDHPs) plenty of time to prepare for open enrollment season later this year.

    In Revenue Procedure 2021-25, the IRS confirmed HSA contribution limits effective for calendar year 2022, along with minimum deductible and maximum out-of-pocket expenses for the HDHPs with which HSAs are paired.

    Additionallly, on April 30, HHS released the Notice of Benefit and Payment Parameters final rule for 2022, published in the May 5 Federal Register. According to an HHS press release, the annual payment notice makes regulatory changes in the individual and small-group health insurance markets, and outlines parameters and requirements issuers need to design plans and set rates for the upcoming plan year.

    The HHS's annual out-of-pocket limits are higher than those set by the IRS, but to qualify as an HSA-compatible HDHP, a plan must not exceed the IRS's lower out-of-pocket maximums.

  • 05/06/2021 8:13 AM | Anonymous member

    The U.S. Department of Labor today announced the withdrawal – effective May 6 – of the “Independent Contractor Rule,” to maintain workers’ rights to the minimum wage and overtime compensation protections of the Fair Labor Standards Act.

    Read more here

Sioux Empire SHRM is a 501(c)6 non-profit organization. | PO Box 1302 | Sioux Falls, SD 57101 | Chapter #217

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