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Employee Benefits Legislation Proposed (But Not Passed) by the Obama Administration

In February of 2015, the Department of Treasury issued a reported entitled “General Explanation of the Administration’s Fiscal Year 2016 Revenue Proposals” (the “General Explanation”). The General Explanation is several...more

Case Note: The Underfunded Union Pension Plan and Asset Purchase Agreements

In a decision handed down by the Seventh Circuit on June 24, 2016, the court warned that a lack of familiarity with the concept of withdrawal liability cannot be used by a buyer of business assets as an excuse to avoid...more

Court Finds Broad Exemption for IRAs

In In re Elizabeth Bratton Moore, the Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Texas (Sherman Division) ruled that the exemption for IRAs in Section 42.0021 of the Texas Property Code applies not only while the funds are...more

Case Note: Fifth Circuit Interprets "Vested" and "Accrued" For Governmental Pension Benefits

Jim Griffin In a decision issued on July 1, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit considered whether changes that were made to the City of Fort Worth pension plan violated the Texas constitution’s...more

Case Note: Court Rules In Favor Of Fidelity And Holds That Float Income Is Not A Plan Asset

The First Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that float income is not a plan asset and therefore is not subject to fiduciary and prohibited transaction provisions of ERISA. The decision was written by former Justice Souter...more

Case Note: Public-Private Partnership and ERISA’s Governmental Plan Exception

The United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit used the 6 factor test in Revenue Ruling 57-128 to determine that a group of retirees could not bring their welfare benefit plan claims under ERISA. ...more

Section 83(b) Election Procedures Changed

On July 25, 2016, IRS finalized new regulations that eliminate the requirement for a taxpayer to file a copy of a Section 83(b) election with the taxpayer’s individual income tax return...more

Case Note: Crime Doesn’t Pay and Taxes are Still Due

In a case involving criminal forfeiture of stock option profits, the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has held that no deduction is allowed for $44 million in forfeited stock option gains on which tax was previously...more

Section 409A, 457 IRS Proposed Regulations

Section 409A - On June 22, 2016 the Internal Revenue Service issued new proposed regulations on the income inclusion provisions of Section 409A. These regulations will be of interest to employers that have nonqualified...more

About Pink Cadillacs and SECA Taxes

Peterson v. Commissioner is a case that only a tax person could enjoy. It is a new opinion from the 11th Circuit, decided on May 24, 2016. The court’s opinion is 87 pages long and includes a strong dissent on the majority’s...more

Small Plan Faces Excessive Fee Challenge

On May 18, 2016, a lawsuit was filed in the Federal District Court in Minnesota alleging various claims arising out of investment and record keeping fees in an employer’s 401(K) plan. The plaintiffs are seeking for the case...more

New IRS Enforcement Interpretation Takes Aim At Tax Status Of Certain Wellness Program Payments

Employers have plenty on their plates to think about on the subject of wellness plans these days. New EEOC regulations and new court decisions will keep employers on their toes in evaluating their current wellness plan...more

IRS Reduces Cost to Fix Some Missed Deferral Errors

The Internal Revenue Service has issued new guidelines that should be advantageous for employers that sponsor 401(k) and 403(b) plans. The new rules reduce and, in some cases, completely eliminate the windfall in favor of...more

Supreme Court Upholds Obamacare Tax Subsidies

Yesterday the United States Supreme Court announced its decision upholding tax subsidies for individuals who obtain health coverage in a state that has a Federal Exchange. The Court's 6-3 opinion in King v. Burwell is here...more

Supreme Court Vacates Ruling on Time-Barred ERISA Claims

In Tibble v. Edison Int’l1, the U.S. Supreme Court today vacated a Ninth Circuit ruling that Edison plan beneficiaries' ERISA (Employee Retirement Income Security Act) fiduciary claims against the company based on allegedly...more

Reasonable Fee Issues for Fiduciaries on the Horizon

The Supreme Court is poised to address whether fiduciaries' decisions—especially in using fee sharing arrangements—are subject to deference when challenged. The Eighth and Ninth Circuit courts recently decided these issues,...more

Supreme Court Strikes Down Presumption of Prudence to ESOP Fiduciaries

In Fifth Third Bancorp v. Dudenhoeffer,1 the U.S. Supreme Court yesterday held that ESOP (employee stock ownership plan) fiduciaries are not entitled to any special presumption of prudence and are subject to the same duty of...more

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