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Malicious Data Breaches Increased 55% in 2020

The number of malicious data breaches increased 55% from 2019 through 2020, driven by several high-profile breaches, according to Advisen data. This spike reverses the downward trend in the previous few years, as bad actors searched for more lucrative options—namely ransomware. Time will tell if the spike in malicious data breaches during a period dominated…

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Going for the Gold: Ransomware Attacks at an All-Time High

From the department of “records we didn’t want to see broken” comes this bit of news: The 4th quarter of 2020 brought a new high in the number of ransomware attacks. As you probably know, the sudden shift to a work-from-home (WFH) environment as a result of the pandemic created a huge range of security…

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The American Rescue Plan’s COBRA Subsidy: Questions Answered

Among its many other provisions, the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) included a subsidy for continuing health care coverage under the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1985 (COBRA). The ARPA subsidy covers 100% of COBRA and state mini-COBRA premiums from April 1st through September 30 of 2021, for certain individuals whose work hours were…

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Your Commercial Property Insurance Rating: How to COPE

Rating commercial properties for insurance purposes is complex work done by experienced underwriters. While you’ll probably never need to have that level of knowledge, a basic understanding of how properties are rated is useful, especially if you’re considering multiple options for the next location of your business. Let’s take a look: The first decision an…

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Preventing Surprise Billing: What You Should Know About the New Rule

On July 1, the Biden-Harris Administration issued an interim final rule titled “Requirements Related to Surprise Billing; Part I” in an effort to address unanticipated out-of-network health coverage charges. While the rule is not yet law, it will take effect on January 1, 2022, following a comment period. Also known as an unexpected balance bill,…

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2021 ACA Reporting – Draft Forms Released

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has released draft versions of several 2021 forms related to reporting required by the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Here’s a brief overview: The forms apply to Internal Revenue Code Sections 6055 and 6066. Draft forms 1094-B and 1095-B will be used by providers of minimum essential coverage (MEC). Those include…

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HR Hotline – Real People, Real Answers

In a recent post we discussed our HR and Compliance Portal, our online portal for convenient access to resources on safety, compliance and much more (read about it here). While this portal is a vast and searchable resource, sometimes you need a little personal guidance, especially when it comes to matters of Human Resources. Chances…

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Hammered by Lumber Prices: Is Your Homeowners Coverage Affected?

By now you’ve heard about the surge in pricing for lumber and other building materials. How bad is it? The National Association of Home Builders reports overall increases of more than 300% since last year. Several factors have combined to create this perfect storm of spiraling costs: Stuck at home during the pandemic, many people…

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HSA/HDHP Limits Changing for 2022

Each year the IRS is required to publish inflation-adjusted contribution limits for health savings accounts (HSAs) and high deductible health plans (HDHPs) by June 1. Revised limits for calendar year 2022 were released on May 10. Here’s a brief summary of the changes to contribution limits: For eligible individuals with self-only coverage, the HSA contribution…

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FMLA: An Overview

The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) has been the law of the land for nearly three decades, with only minor revisions between its passage in 1993 and today. Yet the provisions of the FMLA are not universally understood by employers or employees. Here’s a brief overview of which employers must comply, which employees qualify…

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