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May 9, 2013

Littler’s Healthcare Reform Consulting Group Addresses Affordable Care Act Compliance

Experienced Group Provides Unmatched Counsel on Healthcare Regulatory Developments Impacting Employers

SAN FRANCISCO, CA (May 9, 2013) – Littler Mendelson, P.C. (Littler), the world’s largest employment and labor law firm representing management, today announced the official formation of its Healthcare Reform (HCR) Consulting Group. The group will incorporate a web-based “pay or play” tool called the Healthcare Reform Advisor, available at the end of May, and integrate service enhancements into its existing legal services. The consulting group includes some of the firm’s most experienced employee benefits attorneys who actively counsel employers on new healthcare obligations created by the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

According to a recent Gallup survey, which was released at Littler’s annual Executive Employer Conference in Phoenix, Arizona, 48 percent of respondents say the ACA is bad for their business, while only 9 percent say it is good. Similarly, 55 percent of respondents say it will increase costs, while only 5 percent believe it will lower them.

“These survey findings are indicative of employers’ growing need for guidance on how to effectively respond to the ACA,” said Thomas Bender, co-president and co-managing director of Littler. “As we continue to expand our innovative approaches to serving clients, this group will be a valuable resource for employers grappling with the business decisions and compliance challenges raised by the healthcare reform law.”

“The HCR Consulting Group provides an exceptional degree of service that consultants cannot offer, including innovative new software and ongoing legal advice,” added Jeremy Roth, co-president and co-managing director of Littler.

The HCR Consulting Group will assist businesses in analyzing their options under the ACA, understanding the impact on their operations and developing practical compliance strategies based on their unique needs and demographics. Leaders of this group include:

  • Steven Friedman – Co-Chair, Employee Benefits Practice Group
  • Melissa Kurtzman – Co-Chair, Employee Benefits Practice Group
  • Ilyse Schuman – Co-Chair, Workplace Policy Institute
  • Judith Wethall – Shareholder, Employee Benefits Practice Group

Littler recently developed a white paper titled, “The Labor, Employment and Benefits Law Implications of the Affordable Care Act: Are You Prepared?”

“The ACA’s new employer healthcare obligations are taking full effect next year and many employers must soon make decisions that will have a direct impact on the healthcare benefits they will be offering in 2014,” said Steven Friedman, co-chair of the Employee Benefits Practice Group. “In advance of upcoming developments, this formal initiative extends what we have been doing for many years. The group was a natural step for the firm as we continue to help employers navigate various aspects of the ACA in this ever-changing regulatory environment.”

The online Healthcare Reform Advisor tool, developed by technology partner Neota Logic, will help determine whether and to what extent companies are at risk of having to pay a penalty under the ACA’s “pay or play” mandate. The HCR Consulting Group’s services also include analyzing existing healthcare plan documents for compliance with ACA requirements, and counseling on whether changes designed to comply with the ACA create risks under other employment laws.

“Neota Logic is very pleased to partner with Littler in creating the Health Care Reform Advisor, which joins Littler's deep knowledge of the law with our unique expert systems technology,” said Michael Mills, CEO of Neota Logic Inc. “The Advisor continues Littler's long record as an innovator in services to its clients.”

About Neota Logic

Neota Logic is a privately held company based in New York City that creates operational decision management software for policy automation. Neota Logic transforms expertise into answers and action - in law, compliance, risk management, accounting, human resources, environmental regulation, medicine, and other fields.  Neota Logic applications provide automated, scalable expert advice to reduce risk, increase efficiency and ensure compliance for law firms, financial institutions and Fortune 500 companies. For more information, visit Neota Logic.

About Littler Mendelson

Littler Mendelson is the world’s largest labor and employment law firm exclusively devoted to representing management.  With over 980 attorneys and 57 offices throughout the U.S. and globally, Littler has extensive resources to address the needs of U.S.-based and multi-national clients from navigating domestic and international employment laws and labor relations issues to applying corporate policies worldwide. Established in 1942, the firm has litigated, mediated and negotiated some of the most influential employment law cases and labor contracts on record.