Labor & Employment Tax

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Don't Forget! Preparing for the Affordable Care Act Employer Mandate

With 2015 just a few weeks away, employers with 100 or more full-time and full-time equivalent employees should be gearing up for the implementation of the Affordable Care Act (“ACA”) employer mandate, which subjects...more

The Affordable Care Act Part Two – Preparing for 2015

This is the second of a three part series on the Affordable Care Act (“ACA” or “Act”), commonly known as “ObamaCare.” This post discusses the Employer Mandate, which takes effect January 1, 2015, and certain reporting...more

Feed Me! Thanksgiving Turkeys, Free Lunches, and Wage and Hour Law

With the Thanksgiving holiday ahead of us, we have reached the time of year where some employers start handing out Thanksgiving turkeys, holiday hams, and other gifts to employees, while others provide free or discounted...more

ACA Fees, and Forms, and Delays, Oh My!

In the latest round of delays under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), the Employee Benefits Security Administration recently announced that the deadline for health plans to provide enrollment information to the transitional...more

Considerations for Employee Benefit Programs That Benefit Employers and Employees

Employers must compete in the marketplace for talented employees at every level—both in recruitment and retention. It is thus in employers’ best interests to provide employee benefit plans that are attractive to employees and...more

Year-End Action Item: Section 125 Cafeteria Plan Amendments

Employers that permit employees to pay for certain benefits, such as health coverage, on a pre-tax basis under an Internal Revenue Code Section 125 plan (also known as a “cafeteria plan”) may be required to make the following...more

Employer Errors in Dealing with Additional Medicare Tax

The IRS has modified two of its "frequently asked questions" (FAQs) relating to the additional 0.9 percent "high-earner" Medicare tax that is required to be withheld starting this year. The modifications address how to deal...more

2015 Compensation Committee Handbook

Preface - The duties imposed on compensation committees of publicly traded companies have evolved and grown over time. This first edition of the Compensation Committee Handbook from the lawyers of the Executive...more

Genuine Redundancy – Tale Of Two Cities

An area which continues to challenge employers is the overlapping and complex laws that concern redundancy of employees. For example the Income Tax Assessment Act 1997 has a discrete definition for “genuine redundancy...more

Court Affirms Costs against Plaintiffs Following Contentious Discovery (Pennsylvania)

Kuznyetsov v. West Penn Allegheny Health Sys., 2014 WL 5393182 (W.D. Penn. Oct. 23, 2014). In this Fair Labor Standards Act case, “[d]iscovery was contentious and the motions practice was excessive. As a result, a...more

An Employer’s “Recipe” for having a Great Retirement Plan

Every good meal needs a good recipe and every good recipe needs good ingredients. While many products out there have secret ingredients (Coca- Cola), others have secret ingredients that aren’t (that Big Mac special sauce is...more

IRS and DOL Issue Guidance on Including Deferred Annuities in Target Date Funds

Guidance addresses nondiscrimination, qualified default investment alternative, and annuity safe harbor rules. On October 24, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) each issued...more

The ERISA Litigation Newsletter

Editor's Overview - As it is well known, in Cigna Corp. v. Amara, 131 S. Ct. 1866 (2011), the U.S. Supreme Court identified several forms of appropriate equitable relief that may be available under Section 502(a)(3) of...more

On-Premises Fringe Benefits, Part II: Is There Such a Thing as a Free Lunch?

In part one of this two-part series, “On-Premises Fringe Benefits, Part I: Is There Such a Thing as a Free Lunch?,” I discussed the Internal Revenue Code’s provisions on tax-free employer-provided meals in addition to the...more

Employment Income not Substantively Connected to a Reserve is Taxable

In Baldwin et al v the Queen, 2014 TCC 284, the Tax Court of Canada had an opportunity to consider section 87 of the Indian Act and when employment income is “situated on a reserve” for tax purposes....more

The Affordable Care Act—Countdown to Compliance for Employers, Week 6: Labor and Treasury Departments Play Whack-a-Mole with...

Last year, the Department of Labor and the Treasury Department/IRS (Departments) issued guidance on the application of certain of the Affordable Care Act’s insurance market reforms to health reimbursement arrangements (HRAs),...more

Supreme Court will hear King v. Burwell

On November 7, the Supreme Court announced it would hear its second significant legal challenge to the Affordable Care Act (ACA). King v. Burwell, expected to be heard this spring and ruled on by the end of June, is a direct...more

2014 End of Year Plan Sponsor “To Do” List Part 2 – Qualified Retirement Plans

As 2014 comes to an end, we are pleased to present you with our traditional End of Year Plan Sponsor “To Do” Lists. This year, we are presenting our “To Do” Lists in three separate SW Benefits Updates. Part 1 of the series...more

IRS Allows Cafeteria Plan Election Changes to Coordinate With ACA Exchanges

New IRS guidance adds two more events that allow participants to change their cafeteria plan elections outside of the annual open enrollment period. These events are designed to coordinate with the employer coverage rules and...more

Contracting Across The Tasman

When businesses decide to venture across the Tasman to set up a new Australian or New Zealand based office, it is sometimes in the belief that the easiest and best option is to start by engaging contractors. Employers can be...more

Government Kills Aggressive ACA Employer Planning Technique

Action Item: The government has struck down an important Affordable Care Act planning technique: so-called “middle” or “minimum value” plans. Employers that have implemented such plans or are significantly down the road on...more

Agencies Come Down Hard on Various Employer Health Plans and Arrangements

As we move into 2015, employers continue to grapple with numerous Health Care Reform concepts. Employers should be cautious regarding arrangements promoted to avoid health care penalties because the agencies are cracking...more

Supreme Court Grants Review in ACA Tax Subsidies Case

The Supreme Court announced on Friday that it would hear King v. Burwell, a case challenging whether tax subsidies are available to individuals purchasing health insurance through the Federal exchange rather than State...more

New IRS Rules on Direct Rollovers of Taxable and Non-Taxable Amounts Require Changes to Defined Contribution Plan Administration...

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) recently released guidance allowing participants to allocate the taxable and non-taxable portions of a single distribution from a defined contribution retirement plan into separate accounts....more

On-Premises Fringe Benefits, Part I: Is There Such a Thing as a Free Lunch?

It is no secret that many Silicon Valley employers serve free gourmet meals to their employees—the Wall Street Journal, Bon Appétit magazine, Time, Forbes, and other media sources have reported on this benefit. In addition,...more

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