Advisors Partnering with Summit’s ACA Solution
Summit is proud to partner with Benefit Brokers, CPAs, and Payroll Providers
Employers were faced with Affordable Care Act (ACA) administration, compliance, and reporting. Naturally they thought to ask their benefit consultants and CPAs if they were completing these new requirements for them. And if not, how would they abide by the ACA Employer Mandate?
The advisors turned to the IRS Affordable Care Act Tax Provisions for Employers. After hours upon hours of review, they quickly realized that administering, calculating, generating codes, and populating the reports themselves would be extremely complex.
Some employers heard rumors that their payroll provider might be performing ACA reporting for an additional fee. Others thought they could develop expertise in house with the ever changing IRS regulations. They thought if they completely understood the employer mandate and acquired a software kit and the associated training, they’d be able to successfully complete ACA administration and reports.
Tracking the data necessary to complete reporting can be incredibly complicated. The majority of ACA reporting consists of group medical plan information, therefore requiring an intensive knowledge of how employee benefits work. Necessary payroll information is also collected for each employee and only certain data is required.
We have heard from employers that some, but not all, payroll providers had erroneous understandings of the regulations, and very few were appropriately staffed to respond to the burden of ACA reporting.
Additionally, in working with CPAs, we have found that the majority were not aware that they must be HIPAA Compliant in order to complete forms 1094-B and 1095-B for their clients. This is likely the first time many of them have dealt with Protected Health Information (PHI).
Lastly, some employers attempted to administer, comply, and report using their own ACA process. Even employers with solid HR, payroll and administration departments found the entire process exceedingly difficult. They spent countless hours attempting to read and comprehend hundreds of pages of IRC 54.4980H, 6055, and 6056 regulations. They then had to design an administrative plan that was in line with the regulations, collect required data, execute calculations, properly apply regulations in each measurement period on each employee to minimize potential penalties, generate codes, populate hundreds, if not thousands, of forms, and timely report to the IRS. Employers have found that devoting the abundant time and resources required to successfully complete the entire ACA task was costly and risky.
These problems have left employers quite anxious and frustrated over their options for ACA administration and reporting solutions. Many will be looking once again for a qualified and trusted vendor. Moving forward, the role of advisors in assisting their clients in finding that vendor will be enormous. Employers will be highly satisfied with advisors that have an established relationship with a reputable Third Party Administrator (TPA).
Advisors have steep resource and learning curves to meet the ACA needs of their clients. Meanwhile, it is projected that many unsatisfied employers will be leaving their previous ACA service provider in search of a trusted vendor that is an expert in all aspects of the Affordable Care Act with well established plan designs, a seamless administrative process, accurate report completion, customer service and support. You may ask, how can an advisor confidently suggest a competent vendor? By building a trusted relationship with a vendor that has many years of expertise, has a solid foundation, and a great reputation.
Summit's ACA service exists to support advisors in providing excellent service for their clients. We deliver the industry’s best ACA reporting experience, and are proud to offer advisors our unbeatable solution in meeting the needs of their clients. We work closely with benefit groups, and want to team up with you to help your clients with ACA compliance administration and reporting.
When you refer clients to our ACA solution, we provide consulting services to you and your team. Our consultants are available by phone and email to clarify ACA regulations and answer any questions you may have.
Summit has been providing actuarial and benefit consulting and administration for decades. Our staff of credentialed actuaries and experienced benefit professionals is well-versed in the complexities of plan design, administration, operational compliance, and reporting. Our experience makes us uniquely qualified to perform ACA administration. We are continually monitoring the complex (and changing) ACA regulations, and have a firm understanding of what is needed in order for Applicable Large Employers to comply with the law.
We strongly believe that the level of service and expertise we provide to advisors cannot be matched. Our fixed fee approach means that advisors and clients may call any time for support, free of charge. And as a CEFEX certified firm, our clients are assured that Summit meets our industry’s best practices, as defined by the American Society of Pension Professionals and Actuaries.
Contact us through ACAPro@SummitBenefit.com for more information about how we can partner together to help your clients complete this reporting affordably and with the highest quality of service in the marketplace.