Final DOL Disability Benefits Claims Procedures Effective April 1

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) announced a final rule on December 16, 2016, revising the claims procedure regulations under ERISA for employee benefit plans providing disability benefits.

The final rule revised and strengthened the prior rules by adopting certain procedural protections and safeguards for disability benefit claims that were currently applicable to claims for group health benefits pursuant to the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

After much delay, this rule finally became effective as of April 1, 2018.

Employers should review and update their disability plan documents, Summary Plan Descriptions, and other related materials to conform to the new regulation. Also be sure to review the new regulations with their service providers to ensure carriers are prepared to implement the changes in the final regulation. Contact your disability carrier or USI consultant for further details on this rule and tips for taking action if needed.

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