The deadline for NYS resident insurance licensed professionals to file your cybersecurity certification is DUE April 15th!
Q: I’ve qualified for an exemption in previous years, do I need to do anything?
A: Yes, even if you fall into one of the exempt categories, you must go on to the website listed to the right and file a notice of exemption.
Q: Great, what are the steps for filing?
Q: What are the exemptions?
500.19(a)(1) – You are entitled to this exemption when a Covered Entity has fewer than 10 employees, inclduing independent contractors. THis is a limited exemption and you must still design and implement a cybersecurity program that meets some but not all the regulatory requirements
500.19(a)(2) – You are entitled to this exemption when a Covered Entity has less than $5,000,000 in gross annual revenue in each of the last 3 fiscal years from NY business. This is a limited exemption and you must still design and implement a cybersecurity program that meets some but not all the regulatory requirements.
500.19(a)(3) – You are entitled to this exemption when a Covered Entity has less than $10,000,000 in year-end total assets. This is a limited exemption and you must still design and implement a cybersecurity program that meets some but not all the regulatory requirements
500.19(b) – You are entitled to this exemption when you are an employee, agent, representative, or designee of another Covered Entity and you are following that entity’s cybersecurity program. Under this exemption persons do not need to create their own program, but will be required to idenitfy the Covered Entity’s whose program you ae following to claim this exemption.
500.19(c) – You are entitled to this exemption when a Covered Entity does not operate, maintain, utilize, or control any IT systems and does not,and is not required to control. own, access, generate, recieve or possess Nonpublic Information. This is a limited exemption and you must still design and implement a cybersecurity program that meets some but not all the regulatory requirements
500.19(d) – You are entitled to this exemption if you are a Covered Entity that is a captive insurance company that does not, and is not required to control, own, access, generate, recieve, or possess Nonpublic information
Q: If I’m exempt, are there any requirements for me?
A: Yes, if you filed for an exemption under subsection (a) of 23 NYCRR 500.19, you still must: maintain a Cybersecurity Program as required in section 500.02; maintain a Cybersecurity Policy as required in section 500.03; limit Access Privileges as required in section 500.07; conduct a Risk Assessment as required by section 500.09; implement a Third Party Service Provider policy as required by section 500.11; limit your Data Retention as required in section 500.13; and provide Notices to the Superintendent as required by section 500.17, which includes filing an annual Certification of Compliance. If you filed for an exemption under subsections (c) or (d) of 23 NYCRR 500.19, you still must: conduct a Risk Assessment as required by section 500.09; implement a Third Party Service Provider Policy as required by section 500.11; limit your Data Retention as required in section 500.13; and provide Notices to the Superintendent as required by section 500.17, which includes filing an annual Certification of Compliance.
A: Yes, see above to access the sample policy template link.
This is an annual certificate filing requirement. If you have any issues, please contact our office.
Still not sure? Call your Broker Manager or KAFL Team Member at 1 (800)-272-6488
|For Immediate Release: 3/23/2021||GOVERNOR ANDREW M. CUOMO|
ON 11TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE AFFORDABLE CARE ACT’S SIGNING, GOVERNOR CUOMO ANNOUNCES EXPANDED ELIGIBILITY FOR FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE IN NEW YORK
Extends Open Enrollment Period to the End of 2021
NY State of Health’s Implementation of the American Rescue Plan Will Lower Premiums for Most Consumers
Higher Tax Credits Also Available to Current Enrollees in Early April and to Higher-Income New Yorkers For the First Time Starting in June
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced expanded tax credits available through NY State of Health, New York’s health plan marketplace. The expansion will result in more New Yorkers being eligible for financial assistance and the further reduction in health insurance premiums in New York State. Through the American Rescue Plan, which President Biden recently signed into law, increased tax credits are available to more than 150,000 consumers who are already enrolled in coverage, further lowering health care costs. In addition, in June 2021, NY State of Health will for the first time expand tax credits to tens of thousands of additional New Yorkers with higher incomes who, before the American Rescue Plan, did not qualify for financial assistance to lower the cost of premiums. Governor Cuomo also announced that the 2021 Open Enrollment Period will be extended through the end of this year. The announcements come on the 11th anniversary of President Obama signing the Affordable Care Act into law.
“Access to high-quality affordable health insurance is crucial at any time, but the COVID-19 pandemic has made it even more important to make sure New Yorkers are insured in case they face the virus or other health issues,” Governor Cuomo said. “With the availability of increased tax credits and the extended Open Enrollment Period, health insurance premiums will be reduced for more New Yorkers than ever before. I encourage anyone who needs health insurance to sign up through NY State of Health.”
Beginning in early April, enhanced federal tax credits will be available for low- and moderate-income consumers (income up to $51,040 for individuals and $104,800 for a family of four) to lower the cost of Qualified Health Plans. Individuals already enrolled through NY State of Health at these income levels will be notified to visit NY State of Health, call the NY State of Health Customer Service Center, or contact a certified NY State of Health assistor to update their information. Consumers who complete their updated enrollment in April will receive a premium invoice from their health plan that reflects the lowered premium amount beginning in May.
NY State of Health Executive Director Donna Frescatore said, “As we continue to respond to a global pandemic that has impacted our lives for more than a year, the American Rescue Plan has provided some very good news for New Yorkers. We are working to make enhanced tax credits available to New Yorkers as quickly and as seamlessly as possible.”
By June 2021, NY State of Health will update its system to automatically apply the enhanced tax credits without the consumer needing to take any action to receive them. Also in June, NY State of Health will update its system so that higher income consumers (income above $51,040 for individuals and $104,800 for a family of four) can access the federal tax credits. Consumers at these income levels were not previously eligible for tax credits.
To allow as many consumers as possible to access these enhanced tax credits, and in light of the ongoing public health emergency, NY State of Health is also announcing an extension of the Open Enrollment Period to December 31, 2021. On February 17, Governor Cuomo announced that New York’s health insurance Open Enrollment Period was extended to May 15, 2021, aligning with states across the country. Ensuring access to affordable health coverage and care is more important than ever, so that individuals do not avoid seeking testing or medical care for fear of cost during the ongoing public health emergency. This deadline extension allows consumers additional time to enroll for 2021 coverage.
Over the past eleven years, New York has led the nation in its implementation of the ACA and made more than $4.4 billion in federal tax credits available to New Yorkers to lower the cost of Qualified Health Plans purchased through the NY State of Health Marketplace. More than 5.8 million people, nearly 1 in 3 New Yorkers, now access health coverage through NY State of Health, New York’s official health plan marketplace. The state has seen an unprecedented reduction in uninsured – from 10 percent to 5 percent between 2013 and 2019.
Now, with the passage of the American Rescue Plan, NY State of Health will build on these gains to further extend affordable coverage to hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers. Depending on enrollment levels, New Yorkers could receive more than $700 million in additional tax credits in 2021 because of the American Rescue Plan.
Individuals who are eligible for other NY State of Health programs—Medicaid, Essential Plan and Child Health Plus—can enroll year-round. As always, consumers can apply for coverage through NY State of Health online at nystateofhealth.ny.gov, by phone at 1-855-355-5777, or by connecting with a free enrollment assistor.
Planning for a successful future without your business is a smart strategy. One of the traps that business owners commonly fall into as they begin planning for their successful future without the business is seeing what they need to do and trying to do everything all at once. However, much like your business didn’t spring into success overnight all those years ago, future-oriented planning doesn’t need to be a one-and-done proposition.
Let’s look at how a phased approach to planning can help you get the most out of your efforts and make the process more manageable.
Bill Burns was ready to go fishing. Over 40 years, he grew what was originally a one-man logistics consulting agency into a mid-sized inventory management services business with 15 offices. His daughter Katie and longtime employee Lester Clay played big roles in the company’s growth through a proprietary software they’d created in the early years. Bill knew exactly how much he needed to retire with financial security. But he didn’t know how to go about getting it. He originally wanted to sell the business to Katie and Lester, but he knew they didn’t have the kind of people skills he had to attract new clients. He worried that if he sold to an outsider, they’d just buy for the proprietary software and lay his employees off. Plus, he wasn’t even sure what he’d do in retirement other than fish, and he was afraid he’d get bored.
Bill felt overwhelmed with how much he had to figure out. He shared these thoughts with Glen, his most trusted business advisor.
“I think the most important area to focus on is making you inconsequential to the business,” Glen said. “You’re the rainmaker now, and to get the money you need, you’ll need to replace yourself.”
After reconfirming that Bill’s financial security target was accurate, Glen told Bill something that took much of the weight off his shoulders.
“Since Katie and Lester are comfortable sticking on the operations side, we can bring in a professional management team to help develop skills on the sales side. That’ll open up a lot of different paths for you to reach your personal and financial goals. It may also give you some leverage when you decide to sell.”
Bill was tentative at first. No one had ever outsold him at his company. But after seeing the professional management team that Glen and a new recruiting firm helped put together, he felt more confident, and for good reason.
The management team formalized his company’s sales process. Profits began to increase year over year because Bill wasn’t the only one capable of making big sales anymore. The management team used the additional profits to attract strong managers and operations people, which led to even more increases.
With more people helping to grow the company, Bill had more free time. He found hobbies he liked in addition to fishing and found himself spending more time away from the office doing them because of the strength of his sales team. He built a new plan for the future based on his new interests and goals.
Best of all, the expanded advisor team that Glen helped assemble had the expertise to negotiate with potential third-party buyers. Sales performance had finally caught up to the cutting-edge developments in operations, making his new team, including Katie, Lester, and new managers, just as valuable as the software.
With a strong management team and encouragement from Katie and Lester, Bill sold the company to a large international buyer, achieved financial security, and protected his employees.
Like many business owners, Bill saw how much work he had to do and felt overwhelmed. When you’re responsible for your business’ success, it’s not uncommon to feel this way. Fortunately, with advice from a planning-oriented advisor and his new advisor team, Bill learned that he could do his planning in phases and didn’t have to be everything to everyone.
Phased planning allowed him to focus on the most important actions he could take and work through the initial challenges in a more limited area. His success in one portion of planning led to success in other areas over time, which also allowed Bill to move forward with planning for his personal future once the business future was clear. By committing to phased planning, Bill reaped the benefits, proving to himself that he didn’t have to tackle everything all at once.
|The information contained in this article is general in nature and is not legal, tax or financial advice. For information regarding your particular situation, contact an attorney or a tax or financial professional. The information in this newsletter is provided with the understanding that it does not render legal, accounting, tax or financial advice. In specific cases, clients should consult their legal, accounting, tax or financial professional. This article is not intended to give advice or to represent our firm as being qualified to give advice in all areas of professional services. Exit Planning is a discipline that typically requires the collaboration of multiple professional advisors. To the extent that our firm does not have the expertise required on a particular matter, we will always work closely with you to help you gain access to the resources and professional advice that you need.
For professional use only. All information can be subject to change without notification.
KAFL Insurance Resources
Copyright © 2021 Business Enterprise Institute, Inc. All rights reserved.
|When planning for the future, you have a wealth of options related to who should continue to run your business. Many business owners’ plans fall short because they are unaware of the many options they have available to them and the pros and cons of each path.
One common exit path is a family business transfer. This allows you to keep the business in the family and still have an attachment to the business. You may not get as much money for this type of transfer and it could take longer to complete, but there may be real benefits as well.
Benefits of a Family Business Transfer
There are many benefits that come along with transferring the ownership of your business to your children or someone else in your family.
Financial Security: If you properly structure the business transfer, you may be able to receive the amount of income you need and want by the end of the transition process. Further, you can design the transfer so that you retain control of your business during the transfer period and until you receive all of the money you want. You might achieve this benefit through ongoing involvement with the company, participation in profits as an owner, and/or sale of ownership.
Time: If you are not ready to leave the business today, you can structure the transfer to the next generation to take 5–10 years, depending on your goals and objectives. You can create a custom transition that addresses the abilities of the successor owners and the readiness of the business.
The timeline for this path gives you time to slow down, develop new interests, and prepare yourself and your business for life after the transfer. It also gives you time to collect income from salary, perks, and distributions while maintaining control.
Taxes: Using a strategy customized to family transfers, you may be able to minimize certain taxes. You might create a balance among income tax, capital gains tax, and gift and estate tax that fully leverages multiple tax planning techniques. You may be able to achieve a better outcome with a thoughtful combination of planning strategies.
Values-Based Goals: Owners often choose to transfer their businesses to children because, if done correctly, it achieves so many of their values-based goals. From the role of the business in the community to taking care of future generations, family business transfers can help to achieve these types of goals in ways that a traditional sale might not.
Challenges of a Family Business Transfer
Although there are some obvious perks to keeping the business in the family, there can be some challenges you need to be aware of before you make your decision.
Financial Security: Basing a business transfer on your family ties, especially ties to someone who can’t or won’t run the business properly, is a huge threat to your financial security and the very existence of your business.
Time: If you want to leave your business within a year, remember that getting paid full value for the company from children generally takes several more years than a sale to a third party or Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP).
Taxes: Without careful tax planning, you could pay far more in taxes than necessary when transferring ownership to your family.
Values-Based Goals: Sometimes family transfers run amok if your goals are not in line with those of your family.
None of these challenges are insurmountable unless you fail to recognize the existence and significance of each and create a written and comprehensive road map to address them.
|It is safe to say that this year was full of surprises. Some businesses thrived, while in other areas jobs were lost, companies were forced to go under, and we even lost loved ones along the way. Many businesses were affected by the pandemic in some way or another. According to a survey conducted by the PNAS (Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America), 43% of businesses temporarily closed, and nearly all of these closures were due to COVID-191.
We also learned that many small businesses are financially or structurally fragile. Companies were often strapped for cash, even when they had access to temporary government stimulus funds.
Although we may not have been able to foresee and properly plan for this year’s business and family disruptions, there are a few lessons to be learned about planning for the future so that your business can be more flexible and tolerant to change. We saw that responding to tough situations can be a good way to showcase your creativity and motivation to stay on track.
Flexibility is Key
Major changes in the economy, your industry, or your health can happen quickly. Companies that have the ability to turn aspects of their business model and operations on and off more quickly can minimize negative impacts (or maximize positive impacts) of unexpected changes. Remember that it may not be enough to be prepared to change direction in your own mind. Communication with your employees can keep everyone moving together and smooth out rough spots if you have to change gears.
Having a strong and adaptable team and team leaders will also help with transitions. Industry changes happen often, and sometimes randomly, so having a team in place that is able to think on their feet and come up with creative improvements to the business can help your business thrive even in trying times.
Also, by leasing your equipment, vehicles, office space, and even employees, you can make your business more agile. Hiring contract labor or utilizing outsourced vendors can give you more freedom to make changes quickly. Think of it as adjusting dials in your business rather than locking yourself into fixed or inflexible investments.
Fire Drills Improve Outcomes
It can take valuable time to work through emergency or disaster scenarios, and it can be awkward to “practice” what you’ll do if faced with a major threat or disruption in your business. As awkward as it may seem, fire drills do work. When your team knows what the process is during an emergency or major change of events, they tend to act more calmly and make better decisions when an actual emergency does arise. Work through and document what you will do if:
· You lose your largest customer or contract.
· You lose your top executive or manager unexpectedly.
· Your distribution channels are disrupted.
· One or more components of your technology stack fails.
The more prepared you are for the unexpected, the better off your company and your employees will be. Don’t let them get thrown off by surprises. Have open communication about what they can expect if a major change happens.
A Belt and Suspenders Work Better
Planning for multiple solutions to a single problem is a good way to manage the impact of a disruption in your business (or in your life). Owners of closely-held businesses often have a lot of their wealth, and their family’s security, tied up in their business. However, the business is often illiquid, or its value may not be enough to support your family for an extended period of time. Owners who prepare for unwelcome changes might be able to use either a “belt” or some “suspenders” to hold up their family, such as:
· Investing in income-producing assets outside of the business.
· Reducing company debt (or at least removing yourself from personal guarantees for company debt).
· Maximizing opportunities for funding retirement through qualified retirement plans.
· Developing a “sinking fund” in the business.
Having some type of variation of solutions to any given problem can also ease the tension you or your family might have about the unknown future ahead of you. Preparation for the worst will only benefit the business down the road. You can truly never be too prepared.