The Washington Report
October 13, 2021
IRS Publishes Notice of Extension Timeframes for Elections and Payments of COBRA Premiums
On October 6, 2021, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) published guidance (Notice 2021-58) which clarifies the application of the extension of timeframes by the Joint Notice (85 FR 26351, May 4, 2020) and the Employee Benefits Security Administration Disaster Notice 2021-01 (February 26, 2021) (Emergency Relief Notices) to elections and payments of COBRA premiums during the COVID-19 pandemic. IRS Notice 2021-58 clarifies that the disregarded period for an individual to elect COBRA continuation coverage and the disregarded period for the individual to make initial and subsequent COBRA premium payments generally run concurrently. The Notice also addresses the interaction of these rules with the American Rescue Plan Act COBRA premium assistance and Notice 2021-31 (June 7, 2021). Notice 2021-58 provides timelines and examples for calculating when individuals will need to elect and make their initial COBRA payments, based upon when these individuals elected COBRA under the Emergency Relief Notices.
For additional information, please see the Aon bulletin Agencies Extend Deadlines for COBRA Elections and Payments, available in the Publications section of this newsletter.
IRS Notice 2021-58 is available here.
EEO Digest Now Available
On October 7, 2021, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) announced that the latest edition of the federal sector Digest of Equal Employment Opportunity Law (EEO Digest) is now available. The EEO Digest, a quarterly publication prepared by the EEOC’s Office of Federal Operations, features a wide variety of recent EEOC decisions and federal court cases of interest. This edition of the EEO Digest contains summaries of noteworthy decisions issued by the EEOC, including cases involving attorney’s fees, class complaints, compensatory damages, and case processing. It also includes cases discussing dismissals, findings on the merits, mixed-motive, sanctions, settlement agreements, stating a claim, summary judgment, and timeliness.
The news release is available here.
The EEO Digest is available here.
Agencies Extend Deadlines for COBRA Elections and Payments
The Internal Revenue Service and the Departments of Labor and Health and Human Services (the Agencies) have issued guidance (Notice 2021-58) extending deadlines for the election of COBRA coverage and the payment of COBRA premiums during the COVID-19 national emergency.
Under current guidance, employer group health plans are subject to extensions on deadlines for ERISA claims, HIPAA special enrollment rights, and COBRA elections and payments. Notice 2021-58 makes clear that the extensions for COBRA elections and payments continue.
The Aon bulletin is available here.
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