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COVID-19 and Employee Benefits: New Relief Act, Vendor Performance, HIPAA Issues, Paid Leave, 401(k) Considerations

Recent IRS Guidance, Compliance Issues, Legal and Regulatory Obligations, Responsibility to Employees and Communications

Recording of a 90-minute premium CLE webinar with Q&A

This program is included with the Strafford CLE Pass. Click for more information.
This program is included with the Strafford All-Access Pass. Click for more information.

Conducted on Thursday, May 21, 2020

Recorded event now available

or call 1-800-926-7926

This CLE course will guide employee benefits attorneys and advisers on critical issues and challenges of COVID-19 on employee health and welfare plans and administration. The panel will discuss the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on employee benefits, the new Families First Coronavirus Response Act (the Act), vendor performance issues, HIPAA, and 401(k) considerations. The panel will also offer action plans to ensure legal and regulatory compliance for employers and plan administrators.


The COVID-19 pandemic is causing significant employee benefits issues for employers. Employee benefits counsel must identify critical issues and implement a variety of administrative standards during this crisis.

Congress has passed the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (the Act), which provides employees paid family and sick leave and financial assistance for coronavirus testing. The Act also requires all ERISA plans, both insured and self-insured, to cover (1) testing services, (2) any healthcare provider, urgent care, or emergency room visits for COVID-19, and (3) any item or service furnished during such evaluation or testing visit. These services are to be covered at no cost to employees and remain in place until the health crisis ends.

Also, as the number of new cases continuously increases, employee benefits counsel must prepare their response plans. Counsel must anticipate employee benefits issues that may arise relating to vendor performance, HIPAA, paid leave, 401(k) considerations, and other compliance issues and potential benefit change considerations.

Listen as our panel discusses the impact of COVID-19 on employee benefits and offer critical plans of action to ensure legal and regulatory compliance.



  1. Impact of the coronavirus on employee health and welfare benefits
  2. Families First Coronavirus Response Act and recent IRS guidance for high deductable health plans
  3. Critical steps for employers
    1. Plan amendments and privacy law requirements
    2. Vendor performance issues
    3. HIPAA
    4. Paid leave
    5. 401(k) considerations
  4. Best practices to ensure legal and regulatory compliance


The panel will review these and other key issues:

  • What is the impact of COVID-19 on employee health and welfare benefits?
  • What are the key takeaways of the recently enacted Families First Coronavirus Response Act?
  • What guidance has been provided by the IRS concerning high deductable health plans and what are the tax implications?
  • What steps must be taken by employers in light of recent government actions?


Levy, Rachel
Rachel Leiser Levy

Groom Law Group

Ms. Levy is a principal in the Policy and Health and Welfare practice groups at Groom Law Group where she advises...  |  Read More

Temme, Ryan
Ryan C. Temme

Groom Law Group

Mr. Temme practices in the firm's Health and Welfare Practice Group, where he works on a variety of health law...  |  Read More

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