The Department of Labor (DOL) is requiring closely held companies that drop contraceptive services from their health plans to inform their employees in writing within 60 days of the decision.

The vehicle for doing this is the Summary Plan Description (SPD) for the health plan, which would have to disclose the elimination of coverage and be distributed to all employees.

The guidance appears in a July 17 Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) posting that followed the Supreme Court's ruling in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores Inc. that privately held companies could opt out of the contraceptive services requirement of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) if it conflicted with the owners' religious beliefs.

“For plans subject to the Employee Retirement Income Security Act, ERISA requires disclosure of information relevant to coverage of preventive services, including contraceptive coverage,” the DOL said on its Employee Benefits Security Administration website.

Read "FAQs about Affordable Care Act Implementation (Part XX)."