The Employee Retirement Income and Security Act of 1974, is a federal law designed to protect people who participate in private pension and health plans.
The Employee Retirement Income and Security Act of 1974 is a federal law designed to protect people who participate in private pension and health plans.
Many types of plans are covered under ERISA, including employer-sponsored healthcare. Private employers and employee organizations, such as unions, that offer health plans to employees have to comply with ERISA regulations; churches and government groups are an exception.
What it Covers
Essentially, ERISA requires plans to provide participants with plan information regarding management, requirements, and protocols for accessing benefits through their healthcare or retirement accounts.
Amendments to ERISA have expanded the protections of the act:
- Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA) provides eligible workers and their families with the right to continue health coverage for some time after the loss of a job, or the loss of coverage.
- The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) provides protections for working Americans who might otherwise be prevented from recieving health coverage because of health problems.
- Other important amendments include the Newborns’ and Mothers’ Health Protection Act, the Mental Health Parity Act, and the Women’s Health and Cancer Rights Act.
Be sure that healthcare and retirement benefits are ERISA compliant.