NMAHU Northlander Notes
May / June 2016
President's Message  by Raquel Paulus

It took FOREVER but spring has finally sprung in northern Michigan.  That means no excuses for not joining us at upcoming NMAHU member meetings.  Our April Pharmacy panel event was a success with almost 40 attendees!  Thank you to the MAHU board for attending and for our lobbyist, Gary Reed, for giving us a Legislative update.  In May, we have this year's first CE event with an update on Voluntary Products.  In June we're pulling together with the rest of NAHU for a live webinar update from Janet Trautwein who will speak on the Presidential candidates and their agenda for health care.  Watch for more information on both of these programs soon.
Finally, the end of June is the NAHU National Convention, to be held in Albuquerque New Mexico this year.  Our local board will send the President and President Elect as we usually do, but members are invited and strongly encouraged to attend.  Click here for more information - this is THE benefits event of the year to attend.
2016 NAHU National Convention

Thank you for all you do

Raquel Paulus
President, NMAHU  
Next General Membership Meeting

May 19, 2016

11:30 a.m.- 1:00 p.m.

Elk Club

How to make voluntary enrollment successful for you and your clients.

Includes 1 CE Credit!

Seminar Presenter: 
Andrea Baldwin | Sr. Employee Benefits Specialist
  Principal Life Insurance Company


June 10th - Golf Outing 10:30 a.m. Shot gun start @ The Crown Golf Club, more details to follow

June - (date/location TBA)
Live Webinar update from NAHU regarding Presidential Candidates and their stance on healthcare

Photos from April Membership Meeting

B2B (Broker to Broker) - A Resource Not to be Overlooked!
For a long time, NAHU has been operating its Broker to Broker members-only online community. B2B is truly one of NAHU's most beneficial membership benefits. Are you using it?

B2B is an unlimited resource of healthcare industry information and government regulation guidance to help you better serve your clients, and in much less time than it would take to do your own research on industry and government websites.

There are six B2B Discussion Groups available. There is a wealth of credible knowledge among the NAHU members who regularly participate on B2B and who willingly share their knowledge with other B2B participants.

And all B2B postings are archived for any NAHU member to review at any time, 24/7.  B2B is also an excellent way to find a NAHU member in another state when one of your clients asks you for a referral.  You just need to post your question on the appropriate discussion group.
For more information and to sign up go to: B2B Sign Up Guide


Gold Sponsor

Silver Sponsors

BCBSM and BSBSM Specialty Products

Bronze Sponsors


Be Careful What You Say When It Comes to HSAs 
by Brandon Darin

 April 6th The federal Department of Labor (DOL) finalized their rule addressing conflicts of interest for retirement advice, better known as the "fiduciary rule": (https://s3.amazonaws.com/public-inspection.federalregister.gov/2016-07924.pdf) . The new regulations establish how investment advisors who assist employers and employees with "investment property" components of a group benefit plan governed by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA), including Health Savings Accounts (HSAs), may have a fiduciary responsibility even if they only provide advice once.

While most of the new rule addresses the financial industry, the new rules also extend to agents who help employers set up an HSA in conjunction with a medical plan because the DOL notes that HSA products may have associated investment accounts that can be used as long-term savings accounts for retiree healthcare expenses. Therefore, if you help employers or employees set up HSA accounts, you could be inadvertently taking fiduciary responsibility and would have to abide by these new rules established by the DOL's Best Interest Contract Exemption guidelines: ( https://s3.amazonaws.com/public-inspection.federalregister.gov/2016-07925.pdf ).
However, you may be able to avoid the fiduciary standard by educating yourself about these rules and abiding by them. For example, the DOL has established that if client communications do not meet the definition of a "recommendation," then the communications will be considered non-fiduciary.  Conversely, if you recommend specific HSA banks and options, you are beholden to the rule as a fiduciary. The regulation does however allow for general investment education to be provided to clients without triggering the standard. I believe another option that will probably be used more widely by agents is moving your client out of the HSA altogether and replacing it with a Health Reimbursement Account (HRA) , whereas the rule does not apply.

While most of the provisions of this rule come into effect April 8, 2017 some of the nuances such as full disclosure provisions, the policy and procedure requirements and contract requirements do not become the standard until January 1, 2018. Please join the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and NAHU in lobbying your federal representatives to change the proposed rulings.
What is HUPAC??
HUPAC is the political action committee of the National Association of Health Underwriters (NAHU). It is the expression of our First Amendment rights to free speech and association guaranteed under the Constitution. Such political expression has become far more than a useful option for professionals in a heavily regulated business like the health insurance industry. It has become a necessity.
HUPAC is registered with the Federal Election Commission. Since NAHU and similar organizations are prohibited from making political contributions, HUPAC was created to allow contributors to combine their financial support to a candidate to achieve maximum effect.
HUPAC's Mission:
"The purpose of the National Association of Health Underwriter's (NAHU) Political Action Committee (HUPAC) is to raise funds from NAHU members for the purpose of supporting the political campaigns of candidates who believe in private sector solutions for the health and financial security of all Americans."
The candidate fund accepts individual contributions through personal credit cards or bank accounts. Funds from this account are given to political candidates, both challengers and incumbents, Democrats and Republicans. Only NAHU members, their spouses and staff can give up to $5,000 each year.
The administrative fund accepts businesses and individual contributions. State and local chapters can also contribute. Money in this account goes to the operating costs of HUPAC so that the candidate fund can be reserved solely for political contributions. Unlike the candidate account, there are no contribution limits on the administrative account.
Questions or if you would like to contribute please go to:
http://mahu.org/legislative/statelegislativepage.html. or email  Jay Schripsema at jschripsema@lighthousegroup.net

By Jennifer McDonnell, Senior Insurance chairperson
Many Seniors have not set up a 'DURABLE' Power of Attorney for Healthcare. It is p robably a good idea when talking to seniors to remind them to consider doing so, in case they are unable to specify healthcare service preferences due to a 'considerable' health issue.

Since a 'Durable Power of Attorney for Healthcare' is best dictated via a legal form, it's best that they consult with an attorney, not an insurance agent.
There are many links on the Internet that provide additional information on Durable Power of Attorney for Healthcare. Below  are a few examples.  

We at NMAHU do not recommend these sources. We just want to provide examples of some links that have some beneficial information.

Your 2015-2016 NMAHU Board Members
Raquel Paulus
President (231) 922-7220
Keith L. Wright
Immediate Past President  (231) 922-0191
Brandon Darin
Vice President
Co-Committee Chair, Legislative/HUPAC
(231) 357-5400
Mark McLane
President Elect
Committee Chair, Programming
Greg Lewis
Treasurer  (231) 632-2135
Nancy McClosky
Secretary (231) 932-7947
Jen Seman
Director (231) 932-7941 
Sam Campillo
Director (231) 346-2056
Tim Bruce
Director (231) 547-3423 
Jackie Letts
Director (231) 590-0417
Jay Schripsema
Co-Committee Chair, Legislative/HUPAC  (231)346-2051
Jennifer McDonnell
Committee Chair, Senior Markets
Dan Marvin
Committee Chair, Membership/Retention (231)941-6011
Rose Twomey
Committee Chair, Media

NAHU's Mission, Vision, and Code of Ethics
NAHU's Mission Statement
NAHU advocates for our members, provides professional development and delivers resources to promote excellence.

NAHU's Vision Statement
NAHU is the preeminent organization for health insurance and employee benefits professionals. 

NAHU's Code of Ethics
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