COVID-19 ExtensionsInformation for PSC Employees & Their Families
Important Updates for Healthcare and Dependent Care Flexible Spending Account (FSA) Participants!
New COVID-19 relief legislation allows us to make temporary changes to Healthcare and/or Dependent Care Flexible Spending Account (FSA) rules. We know it’s been a tough year, so we want to help our employees and allow for any unused 2020 FSA funds to carry over into 2021. Here’s what’s happening:
Both 2020 Healthcare (HCFSA) and Dependent Care (DCFSA) unused balances will roll over to 2021.
- If you were actively employed as of 12/31/2020 and enrolled in the HCFSA and/or DCFSA, PSC is allowing you to carryover unused money at/above $50 from your 2020 FSA (up to the 2020 maximum election amount) into 2021 to use for eligible expenses this year.
- 2020 balances at/above $50 have been transferred over from Further/HorizonMyWay to the current carrier, WEX.
- This change will provide additional time to apply qualified expenses incurred between January 1, 2021 and December 31, 2021 toward your available balance from 2020.
Dependent Care FSA Dependent Age Increase:
- The age for an “eligible dependent” increased from 13 to 14, provided the dependent turned 13 during the 2020 plan year. This change only applies if you participated in a DCFSA in 2020.
Questions on your account?
If you have any questions regarding your existing balance or account, log in to your Discovery Benefits online account or download the benefits mobile app. You may also contact our Participant Services team by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 866-451-3399 during business hours (Monday through Friday, 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. Central time).
Important Updates Regarding COVID-19 Extensions for PSC Employees and Their Families
The federal government has extended certain deadlines that impact PSC’s sponsored health and welfare coverage as a result of the COVID-19 public health crisis.
NOTE: While PSC encourages you to comply with original deadlines as communicated to you in your SPD(s) and/or notices to avoid any administrative complications, PSC also wants you to know about this temporary relief, if it is needed. Most employees will not be impacted by this information. A detailed explanation of this relief is provided below.
How does the Extension Work?
PSC has extended the time for certain health and welfare benefit elections and payments during what is known as the “Outbreak Period.”
What is the Outbreak Period?
For purposes of the extended deadlines specified below, the clock stopped during the “Outbreak Period,” which extended from March 1, 2020 until 60 days after the end of the declaration of a national emergency. As of the date of this notice, we still do not know the “end date” of the national emergency.
In its new guidance, the Department of Labor (DOL) allows suspension of deadlines on an individual basis. The DOL notes that under ERISA and the Internal Revenue Code, the “disregarded” period allows the earlier of: (a) one year from the missed deadline; or (b) the end of the Outbreak Period (60 days after the end of the national emergency).
DOL provided an example that illustrates how this limited relief works:
- If a qualified beneficiary would have been required to make a COBRA election by March 1, 2020, the relief for that election extended until February 28, 2021.
- If a qualified beneficiary missed the window for a qualifying life event or providing the required documentation by August 1, 2020, the relief for that election will extend to September 30, 2021 (or the end of the outbreak period, whichever occurs first).
What Deadlines are Extended?
Qualifying Life Event – If you missed the window for a qualifying life event or providing the required documentation, you may be eligible to make a change for the following reasons:
- If eligible employees or dependents lose group health coverage or when an employee acquires a dependent through marriage, birth, or adoption.
- If eligible employees or dependents lose Medicaid or CHIP coverage, or when eligible employees or dependents become eligible for a state premium assistance subsidy through Medicaid or CHIP.
Note: It’s important to know that your premium payments may be impacted and retroactively updated to the qualifying life event date.
Claims Procedures – If you file a medical or disability claim or appeal, including an external review, the timeframe will be extended to disregard the Outbreak Period.
Continuation Coverage under the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA) – If you recently elected COBRA, currently are covered by COBRA, or have a qualifying event that is impacted by the Outbreak Period, the following COBRA deadlines are subject to relief:
- 60-day deadline for notifying the plan administrator of the occurrence of a COBRA-qualifying event (e.g. divorce, reduction of hours, etc.)
- 60-day deadline for notifying the plan of a determination of disability
- 60-day deadline for electing COBRA coverage
- 45-day deadline for paying first premium payment and 30-day deadline for paying subsequent premium payments
Note: It’s important to know that your premium payments are not waived. If you miss the deadline for making a payment, your coverage will be dropped. However, you can be reinstated if you pay back all missed premiums.
HSA / FSA Medical Exceptions
There are additional exceptions provided by the federal government related to Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) and Flexible Spending Account (FSA – medical).
- Over-the-counter (OTC) drugs that are for the diagnosis, cure, mitigation, treatment, or prevention of disease no longer require a prescription to be reimbursed from HRAs, FSAs, and HSAs. Note that products intended for general health or well-being will still not qualify for reimbursement. Effective 1/1/2020 for expenses incurred or payments made on and after that date.
- Women / menstrual products including tampons, pads, liners, cups, sponges, or similar products now qualify for medical care for purposes of reimbursement. Effective 1/1/2020 for expenses incurred or payments made on and after that date.
Contact the PSC Benefits Center at 855-674-8221, between 7:30 AM to 7:00 PM CST Monday through Friday.