Diane Thompson

Diane Thompson

Ballard Spahr LLP

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ERISA Class Actions Filed Against Higher Education Institutions

Several ERISA breach of fiduciary duty class actions involving allegedly excessive retirement plan fees were filed this week against higher education institutions including colleges, universities, and medical schools. The...more

8/12/2016 - 403(b) Plans Breach of Duty Class Action Colleges Educational Institutions Employee Benefits ERISA Fees Fiduciary Duty Investment Management Medical School Retirement Plan Universities

Flexibility Offered for Deferred Compensation Plans of Tax-Exempt Organizations, Government Agencies

The U.S. Treasury Department has issued two sets of proposed regulations, under Sections 457 and 409A of the Internal Revenue Code, relating to deferred compensation plans of state and local governments and tax-exempt...more

6/23/2016 - Comment Period Deferred Compensation Federal Employees Internal Revenue Code (IRC) IRS PTO Section 409A Severance Agreements State Employees Tax Exempt Entities U.S. Treasury

New Incentive-Based Compensation: Proposed Rules for Financial Institutions

A group of financial regulatory agencies has released for comment revised proposed rules under Section 956 of the Dodd-Frank Act Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act. The rules provide for regulations and guidelines...more

6/15/2016 - Banking Sector Clawbacks Corporate Officers Dodd-Frank Executive Compensation Financial Institutions Governance Standards Incentive Compensation Risk Management

Department of Labor Releases Final Investment Advice Fiduciary Rules

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has finalized regulations describing the circumstances in which a person who provides investment advice in connection with a retirement plan or individual retirement arrangement (IRA) acts...more

4/8/2016 - Best Interest Contract Exemptions DOL Employee Benefits ERISA ESOP Federal Rule 12(b)(1) Fiduciary Duty IRA Retirement Plan

Supreme Court Restricts State Medical Claims Data Reporting Law

ERISA does not allow a state to compel a self-insured group health plan to compile and report medical claims data for inclusion in a state-wide all-payer health care database, the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled in a landmark...more

3/7/2016 - Bright-Line Rule Employee Benefits Employer Group Health Plans ERISA Health Insurance Preemption Reporting Requirements SCOTUS

OFCCP Publishes Final Rule on Pay Transparency for Federal Contractors, Subcontractors

Federal contractors and subcontractors are prohibited from discriminating against employees or job applicants for inquiring about, discussing, or disclosing their compensation or the compensation of others now that the final...more

9/16/2015 - Employment Discrimination Equal Pay Federal Contractors Gender-Based Pay Discrimination Hiring & Firing NLRA Obama Administration OFCCP Pay Secrecy Subcontractors Wage and Hour

SEC Issues Final Rule on Pay Ratio Disclosure

Nearly two years after issuing the proposed rule, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on August 5, 2015, adopted by a 3-2 vote, the final rule on CEO-to-median employee pay ratio disclosure in what has become...more

8/7/2015 - Compliance Data Security Disclosure Requirements Dodd-Frank Employees Executive Compensation Foreign Workers Full-Time Employees Part-Time Employees Pay Ratio Payroll Records Privacy Policy Publicly-Traded Companies Regulation S-K Seasonal Workers SEC Tax Records Temporary Employees

SEC Proposed Rule 10D-1 Regarding Clawback Policies

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) recently proposed rules requiring national securities exchanges such as the New York Stock Exchange and NASDAQ to establish listing standards requiring publicly traded companies to...more

7/13/2015 - Clawbacks Comment Period Disclosure Requirements Executive Compensation Incentive Compensation Look-Back Measurement Period Publicly-Traded Companies Rule 10D-1 Sarbanes-Oxley SEC

States Must License Same-Sex Marriages, U.S. Supreme Court Rules

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled today that all states must license marriages between two people of the same sex on the same terms that apply to opposite-sex couples and must recognize same-sex marriages that are validly...more

6/29/2015 - Fourteenth Amendment Marriage Marriage Equality Obergefell v. Hodges Same-Sex Marriage SCOTUS

Supreme Court Upholds Affordable Care Act Subsidies in King v. Burwell

In a much-anticipated decision, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled today that individuals who enroll for coverage in a health insurance exchange may qualify for a subsidy to make that coverage more affordable, regardless of whether...more

6/26/2015 - Affordable Care Act Health Insurance Health Insurance Exchanges Individual Mandate King v Burwell SCOTUS State Health Insurance Exchanges Subsidies Tax Credits

New Guidance on Cost-Sharing Limits and Provider Nondiscrimination Rules

The U.S. Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and the Treasury have jointly issued a new set of FAQs that clarifies the application of the rules establishing cost-sharing limits. For 2016, non-grandfathered group...more

5/29/2015 - Affordable Care Act Cost-Sharing DOL Health Insurance Healthcare HHS U.S. Treasury

Department of Labor Proposes New Regulations on Fiduciary Advice

The U. S. Department of Labor (DOL) has reissued long-awaited proposed regulations describing the circumstances in which a person who provides investment advice in connection with a retirement plan or individual retirement...more

4/16/2015 - Conflicts of Interest DOL ERISA Fiduciary Duty Investment Adviser NPRM Retirement Plan

Expatriate Plans Exempted from Many Affordable Care Act Provisions

In the Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act (the recently enacted federal budget bill often known as the “CRomnibus” legislation), Congress has exempted health plans designed to cover expatriates from most...more

1/12/2015 - Affordable Care Act Appropriations Bill Employer Group Health Plans Employer Mandates Expatriates Foreign Nationals

IRS Seeks to Curb Popularity of ‘Skinny’ Health Plans

The Internal Revenue Service, in Notice 2014-69, has concluded that certain unconventional group health plan designs that offer limited or no coverage for in-patient hospitalization services and/or physician services will not...more

11/6/2014 - Affordable Care Act Employee Benefits Employer Mandates Healthcare IRS Pay or Play Popular

Health Plan ID Program Suspended

Late on October 31, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Office of E-Health Standards and Services announced that it was suspending the program that required all health plans to register for a health plan ID...more

11/4/2014 - CMS Covered Entities Deadlines Employer Group Health Plans HPID

IRS Announces Cost-of-Living Adjustments for Employee Benefit Plans

The Internal Revenue Service has announced cost-of-living increases applicable to annual limits for employee benefit plans, including pensions, 401(k), 403(b), 457(b), and welfare plans for 2015. Employers should make sure...more

10/28/2014 - COLA Cost-of-Living IRS Retirement Plan

Health Plan ID Requirements and Other End-of-Year Considerations

Employers and other health plan sponsors may be focused on preparing for the commencement of the employer mandate under the Affordable Care Act on January 1, 2015, but a number of other deadlines and developments are emerging...more

10/13/2014 - Affordable Care Act Benefit Plan Sponsors Cafeteria Plans Employer Mandates HPID IRS Look-Back Measurement Period Popular Reporting Requirements

IRS Issues More Guidance on Affordable Care Act Reporting Requirements

Following up on regulations and forms published earlier this year, the IRS has issued instructions and other guidance on the shared responsibility reporting requirements under the Affordable Care Act....more

9/4/2014 - Affordable Care Act IRS Reporting Requirements

Federal Courts Make Conflicting Rulings on Premium Assistance for Federal Exchange Plan Participants

Does the Affordable Care Act (ACA) authorize the payment of premium and copayment subsidies, or “premium assistance subsidies,” to individuals enrolled in a federally established Exchange? On July 22, 2014, two federal courts...more

7/25/2014 - Affordable Care Act Halbig v Burwell Healthcare IRS King v Burwell Subsidies Tax Credits

Midyear Check on Health Plan Compliance

If you sponsor or administer a group health plan, you are almost certainly taking steps to prepare for legal requirements that will become effective on or before January 1, 2015. New rules under HIPAA, the Affordable Care Act...more

7/15/2014 - Affordable Care Act Compliance Employer Group Health Plans Healthcare

U.S. Judge Strikes Down Same-Sex Marriage Ban in Pennsylvania

Today, a U.S. District Court in Pennsylvania nullified Pennsylvania’s Marriage Laws, holding that they violate the due process and equal protection clauses of the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. If the ruling stands...more

5/21/2014 - DOMA Due Process Equal Protection Marriage Same-Sex Marriage SCOTUS US v Windsor

New FAQs Address Effect of Affordable Care Act on COBRA and Other Matters

In a wide-ranging set of frequently asked questions (FAQs) and other guidance, the U.S. Departments of Labor, Treasury, and Health and Human Services have addressed a number of issues pertaining to the Affordable Care Act...more

5/8/2014 - Affordable Care Act CHIPRA COBRA Corporate Counsel Cost-Sharing DOL FSA Healthcare HHS Preventive Health Care U.S. Treasury

IRS Issues Rules for Recognizing Same-Sex Spouses under Retirement Plans

Last week, the Internal Revenue Service issued Notice 2014-19, which sets forth the rules for recognition of same-sex spouses in retirement plan administration, as required under the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in U.S. vs....more

4/8/2014 - DOMA IRS Retirement Plan Same-Sex Marriage US v Windsor

IRS Issues Guidance on Health FSAs

The IRS has issued guidance on two issues affecting health flexible spending arrangements (health FSAs). The first provides guidance on how a health FSA that consists solely of amounts carried forward from the prior year...more

4/4/2014 - Flexible Spending Accounts Healthcare HSA IRS

IRS To Apply One-Rollover-Per-Year Limit on IRA Rollovers

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has provided guidance that it will follow a recent tax court decision interpreting an Internal Revenue Code requirement allowing taxpayers to complete only one rollover per year from an...more

3/25/2014 - IRA IRA Rollovers IRS

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