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Supreme Court Rules That Church-Affiliated Hospitals Fall Within ERISA’s Church Plan Exemption

On June 5, a unanimous US Supreme Court reversed decisions of the US Courts of Appeal for the Third, Seventh, and Ninth Circuits, holding that a church-affiliated organization that establishes an employee benefits plan falls...more

The Final Rule: June 9 is the Launch Date After All

With its announcements of May 22, 2017, starting with an op-ed in The Wall Street Journal, the Department of Labor confirmed that, absent last-minute action in the courts or by Congress, its new “investment advice” fiduciary...more

The Final Rule: Delayed But (Perhaps) Not Denied

On April 4, 2017, the Department of Labor released its final rule postponing the applicability date of its new “investment advice” fiduciary definition and related exemptions. This extension, which was published in the April...more

The Final Rule: BICE on Ice? Status of the DOL Fiduciary Rule

With recent developments in all three branches of government bearing on the authority and timing of the new Department of Labor (DOL) final rule expanding the definition of fiduciary “investment advice” (the Final Rule) for...more

The Final Rule: DOL Releases Additional FAQs Related to New Fiduciary Rule

The Department of Labor (DOL) has released two additional sets of FAQs providing guidance related to its final rule expanding the definition of fiduciary “investment advice” (the Final Rule) for purposes of the Employee...more

Basic-Supplemental Life Insurance Plan Pricing Structure Upheld in ERISA Class Action

An employee benefit plan that includes an alleged subsidization component for its basic and supplemental options is neither prohibited by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) nor a violation of the plan...more

Labor Department Provides Guidance on ERISA Coverage of State-Run Retirement Programs for Private Sector Employers

In recent years, a number of states have explored the idea of establishing state-run retirement plans for private sector employees who do not have access to employer-sponsored retirement plans. The preemption concerns under...more

DOL Has Many Questions About its Fiduciary Reproposal

As has been widely reported, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) on April 14 issued its proposal to expand the definition of investment advice fiduciary under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA). DOL included...more

6/1/2015  /  401k , DOL , ERISA , Fiduciary Duty , FINRA , Retirement Plan

Supreme Court Instructs Ninth Circuit to Consider Common Law of Trusts in Applying ERISA's Statute of Limitations

The Supreme Court has once again emphasized the importance of ERISA’s origins in the common law of trusts, this time in interpreting its statute of limitations. On May 18, the Court reversed the Ninth Circuit’s decision in...more

DOL Reproposes Expanded ERISA Fiduciary Definition and Revised Complex of Exemptions

On April 14, 2015, after 43 months in development, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) released its reproposal to expand the “investment advice fiduciary” definition under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974,...more

2014 in Review: ERISA Individual Prohibited Transaction Exemptions and Advisory Opinions

In 2014, the Department of Labor (DOL) maintained a diminished program of advance guidance under the Employment Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, as amended (ERISA), in response to requests from the regulated community....more

Legal Alert: Ring in the New Year with New Summary of Benefits and Coverage Requirements for 2015

On December 30, the Departments of Treasury, Labor, and Health and Human Services published a joint notice of proposed rulemaking modifying the Summary of Benefits and Coverage (SBC) final regulations issued in 2012. In...more

DOL and Treasury Update 2014-2015 Regulatory Agendas for Employee Benefits

The principal regulators of U.S. employee benefits have recently published updates to their guidance plans for the coming months. The updated plans are reflected in the attached chart. ...more

Treasury Softly Launches myRA Program

In December 2014, the Treasury Department opened the myRA (my Retirement Account) program to employers and employees. President Obama announced the myRA program in his 2014 State of the Union Address. The program is intended...more

1/6/2015  /  MyRA , Retirement Plan , U.S. Treasury

U.S. Supreme Court Agrees to Hear Arguments Involving Federal Health Insurance Exchange Subsidies

On Friday, the U.S. Supreme Court announced that it would review the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit’s decision in King v. Burwell. In that case, the Fourth Circuit held that tax credits for health insurance...more

DELAYED! HPID Deadline Is No Longer November 5

This past weekend the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) indefinitely delayed enforcement of the requirement that all self-insured health plans obtain a Health Plan Identifier number (HPID). ...more

11/4/2014  /  Healthcare , Healthcare Reform , HHS , HPID

REMINDER: HPID Deadline is November 5th

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is requiring all self-insured health plans to obtain a Health Plan Identifier number (HPID) as part of its compliance efforts under the Health Insurance Portability and...more

IRS and DOL Issue Favorable Guidance on Lifetime Income Provided Through Target Date Funds in Retirement Plans

On October 23 and 24, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and the Department of Labor (DOL) issued coordinated guidance on lifetime income provided through target date funds held by retirement plans. According to an...more

Proposed Approach for Applying the “Look-Back” Method When the Section 4980H Measurement Period Changes

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) recently issued Notice 2014-49 which describes a proposed approach for determining an employee’s full-time or part-time status for purposes of the employer shared responsibility rules under...more

Legal Alert: IRS Reaches a Split Decision on Rollover Allocation Rules

On September 18, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued Notice 2014-54, which clarifies that, subject to some limitations, a single distribution of pre-tax and after-tax amounts from a qualified retirement plan, a 403(b)...more

Legal Alert: New PPACA-related “Family Status” Changes for Cafeteria Plans

The Internal Revenue Service has issued Notice 2014-55 to permit new health plan elections in two situations where they were not previously allowed. ...more

Legal Alert: It’s Time to Review Benefit Denial Letters

On August 7, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit decided in Moyer that the contractual time limits governing the period during which a participant must initiate judicial review of a benefits denial must be...more

IRS Finalizes Guidance on Rev. Rul. 81-100 Group Trusts, and Insurance Company Separate Accounts

In Rev. Rul. 2014-24, scheduled for publication on September 8, 2014, the Internal Revenue Service (the Service) substantially completed its pending guidance on Rev. Rul. 81-100 group trusts by permanently authorizing the...more

DOL Requests Information on Brokerage Windows in Defined Contribution Plans

On August 20, 2014, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) released a request for information (RFI) about the use of brokerage windows, self-directed brokerage accounts, and similar arrangements in participant-directed defined...more

8/22/2014

Financial Service Company’s Nonqualified Plan Found to be an ERISA Pension Plan

In Tolbert v. RBC Capital Markets (July 14, 2014), the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit held that a deferred incentive compensation plan maintained by a financial services company for certain employees was an...more

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