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Murphy School District No. 21 to Pay $138,000 to Settle EEOC Age Discrimination Lawsuit

Federal Agency Says School Used Retirement Plans That Were Facially Discriminatory - PHOENIX -- Murphy School District No. 21 used an early retirement incentive plan which granted greater economic benefits to employees...more

Wage and Hour Cases to Watch at the Supreme Court: Part 2--Perez v. Mortgage Bankers Association

As we discussed recently, this month marked the opening of the Supreme Court’s new term. For employment law practitioners, this session will be particularly busy with seven cases analyzing a range of employment questions,...more

5th Circuit: Outing Whistleblower Equals Adverse Action

On November 12, 2014, in Halliburton, Inc. v. Admin. Review Bd., 5th Cir. No. 13-cv-60323, the Fifth Circuit affirmed an ARB’s decision that disclosing the identity of a whistleblower may constitute an “adverse action” under...more

Monthly Benefits Update - October 2014

IRS Announces 2015 Dollar Limits for Health FSAs and Transportation Benefits - The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced the 2015 dollar limits applicable to contributions to health flexible spending accounts...more

SEC Whistleblower Office Reaches Three-Year Anniversary

The United States Securities and Exchange Commission’s Office of the Whistleblower has only been open since August 2011, yet it has already made a pretty big name for itself in protecting the rights of whistleblowers and...more

Crackdown on Employer NDAs Without Whistleblower Protections

An October 27 letter from Rep. Maxine Waters and seven other House Democrats (from the Financial Services & Oversight Committee) asked the SEC to double down on scrutiny of employer confidentiality agreements that might...more

Third Circuit Sizes Up Dodd-Frank’s Anti-Arbitration Provision

On October 24, 2014, in Khazin v. TD Ameritrade Holding Corp, et al., the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit heard oral argument on an issue of first impression (within that forum): whether Dodd-Frank applies...more

When Did You Last Update Your Background Check Materials? Maybe It’s Time.

Dollar General just agreed to pay $4 million to settle a class action background check case based on its alleged violations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). Marcum v. Dolgencorp, Inc., Civil Action No. 3:12cv108...more

Connecticut Broadens Exemptions to Law Limiting Credit Checks

Connecticut has added mortgage brokers, lenders, and servicing companies to the list of “financial institutions” exempted under the state’s existing law limiting credit checks for purposes of employment. The amendment, which...more

FINRA Proposes Rule Strengthening Background Checks

Last month, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) issued a proposed rule requiring member firms to strengthen their background investigations of applicants seeking registration. The proposed rule adopts,...more

FINRA Issues Guidance Notice To Warn Against Settlements Barring Whistleblower Tips

This month, FINRA issued guidance notice 14-40 to reminds firms that “it is a violation of FINRA Rule 2010 (Standards of Commercial Honor and Principles of Trade) to include confidentiality provisions in settlement agreements...more

FINRA Again Cautions Against Confidentiality Provisions Silencing Whistleblowers

As reported this week by Law360 (subscription required), the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) recently issued a reminder (Regulatory Notice 14-40) warning firms against the use of confidentiality provisions in...more

Eighth Circuit Says Termination Made to Lower Health Care Costs Constitutes Age Discrimination

Under the U.S. Supreme Court’s 1993 Hazen Paper decision, employers that select employees for layoff using the date of vesting of their pensions based on years of service are not discriminating on the basis of age, even if...more

SDNY Dismisses Extraterritorial SOX and Dodd Frank Whistleblower Claims

Failing to heed a powerful message from the Second Circuit, overseas plaintiffs are continuing to seek to pursue SOX and Dodd-Frank whistleblower claims. On September 30, 2014, the Southern District of New York in Ulrich v....more

IRS Issues Final and Proposed Hybrid Plan Regulations

On September 19, 2014, the Internal Revenue Service ("IRS") released additional final regulations clarifying the rules regarding hybrid defined benefit pension plans. At the same time, the IRS also issued proposed regulations...more

FINRA Reminds Anti-Whistleblower Provisions Are Not Permitted in Settlement Agreements

FINRA has published a regulatory notice where it reminds firms that it is a violation of FINRA Rule 2010 (Standards of Commercial Honor and Principles of Trade) to include confidentiality provisions in settlement agreements...more

Should FIRREA Whistleblower Bounties Be Higher?

On Sept. 17, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder raised the prospect of amending FIRREA — the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery, and Enforcement Act of 1989 — to increase its whistleblower awards with the goal of further...more

Monthly Benefits Update

On August 8, President Obama signed legislation that extends certain “pension smoothing” provisions in the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (MAP-21) Act that was signed in 2012. This pension funding relief will...more

The ERISA Litigation Newsletter

Editor's Overview - This month's newsletter focuses on repayment of pension plan overpayments. Our issue discusses pension plan overpayments to participants, a plan administrator's duties to seek repayment, corrections...more

Sixth Circuit Affirms Dismissal of Class Claims Regarding Disability Benefits

ERISA benefit claims are frequently of only modest size individually, but can become overwhelming in a class context. A decision this week from the Sixth Circuit affirms the dismissal of a putative class-wide disability claim...more

Developments Impacting Benefits for Same-Sex Spouses

As federal and state agencies and courts further examine the implications of the Supreme Court of the United States’ ruling on same-sex marriage in U.S. v. Windsor, the laws and regulations governing employee benefits for...more

Same-Sex Spouses and 401(k) and Pension Plans - Does Your Plan Need to be Amended by December 31, 2014?

Same-Sex Spouses are Spouses for Qualified Plan Purposes - On July 26, 2013, in United States v. Windsor, the United States Supreme Court held that the prohibition against recognizing a same-sex spouse as a spouse for...more

Court of Appeals asked to clarify scope of Dodd-Frank Act whistleblower protections

A federal court of appeals has been asked to clarify the scope of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010’s (“Dodd-Frank” or “Act”) whistleblower protections. Specifically, the court has been...more

Take 5 Newsletter: Five Documents That Financial Services Employers Should Revisit Now

With summer here, including its long days and blazing heat, many thoughts may turn to beaches, sunshine, and lazy afternoons. The summer may also be a good time for employers—especially those in the financial services...more

Update For Retirement Plans Post-Windsor

Now that some of the dust has settled on the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in U.S. v. Windsor, employers who haven’t done so already should take immediate steps to review their retirement plan documents and administrative...more

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