Top employee benefits issues to watch

A DLA Piper report


Employment Update

While a new year and a new Administration usually bring a shift in priorities, employers may see more changes than usual in 2021. The Biden Administration already has withdrawn several late Trump Administration regulations, announced plans to expand access to healthcare and lower healthcare costs, and signed into law a $1.9 trillion economic stimulus bill (with more proposed spending on the way).  At the same time, the COVID-19 pandemic continues to alter the health, welfare, and retirement landscape, with many changes likely to be permanent. 

In this report, we identify the top 10 issues likely to impact plan sponsors this year and beyond:

1. Changes to fiduciary rules

2. ACA pivot

3. Transparency for health plans

4. Benefits go remote

5. Increased focus on data security risks

6. Changes to retirement policy

7. Increasing ERISA litigation

8. Momentum on multiemployer pension plan reform

9. Employee mental health and well-being

10. More change ahead  

While the Biden Administration's list of priorities is long, some items may take a back seat to healthcare reform. Nonetheless, employers should prepare for movement on multiple fronts.

Image of Brian Kaplan       
Brian S. Kaplan
    Rita M. Patel
US Practice Group Chair and Global Co-Chair, Employment
    Chair, US Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation

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