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COVID-19 Insurance Updates - The CARES Act

| March 31, 2020

On March 27, 2020, President Trump signed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (the “CARES Act”) into law. It provides support to individuals and businesses that are trying to cope with the coronavirus disease 2019 (“COVID-19”) pandemic. We will likely continue to see additional legislation enacted in response to the COVID-19.

The majority of the 800 pages of legislation are aimed at providing relief for individuals and businesses that have been negatively impacted by the pandemic. This communication will focus in on the parts of the CARES Act that are directed towards employee benefit plans and employee leaves of absence.

Briefly, the legislation:

  • Expands coverage of COVID-19 testing and preventive services.
  • Clarifies that plans and carriers will pay either the negotiated rate or the cash price, as listed on a provider’s website, for COVID-19 testing.
  • Allows high deductible health plans (“HDHPs”) that are compatible with health savings accounts (“HSAs”) with plan years before December 31, 2021 to cover telehealth visits prior to satisfaction of the minimum deductible.
  • Provides that over-the-counter medicines and drugs are “qualified medical expenses” and may be reimbursed through a health FSA, HRA or HSA on a tax-favored basis without a prescription and expands the definition of “qualified medical expenses” to include menstrual products.
  • Includes changes to paid sick leave and family leave provisions created under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (“FFCRA”).

>> For more information, please read the attached document, COVID-19 Stimulus Package - The CARES Act. 

As always, please reach out to us with any questions.