Proskauer - ERISA Practice Center

IRS Confirms California “Waiting Time Penalties” Are Not Wages For Federal Income Tax Purposes

A recent IRS information letter confirms that “waiting time penalties” paid under California law are not wages for federal income tax withholding purposes. Section 203 of the California State Labor Code imposes penalties on…more
| Civil Remedies, Finance & Banking, Labor & Employment Law, Taxation

District Court Applies Dudenhoeffer “More Harm Than Good” Standard to Closely-Held Corporation

A federal district court in Mississippi ruled for the first time that the “more harm than good” pleading standard established by the Supreme Court in Fifth Third Bancorp v. Dudenhoeffer, 134 S. Ct. 2459 (2014), applied to…more
| Civil Procedure, Finance & Banking, Labor & Employment Law, Securities Law

District Court Rules Johnson Controls Retirees Not Entitled to Lifetime Health Benefits

A district court in the Middle District of Pennsylvania held that, notwithstanding the Supreme Court’s decision in M & G Polymers USA, LLC v. Tackett, 135 S. Ct. 926 (2015), the Third Circuit’s rule that clear and express…more
| Civil Procedure, Commercial Law & Contracts, Finance & Banking, Labor & Employment Law

Court Enforces Forum Selection Clause in ERISA Plan

A federal district court in New York enforced an ERISA retirement plan’s forum selection clause and transferred the case to the District of New Jersey. The plaintiff argued that the forum selection clause was invalid because it…more
| Civil Procedure, Commercial Law & Contracts, Finance & Banking, Labor & Employment Law

U.S. DOL To Issue Final Rule and Exemptions on Fiduciary Standards

On April 6, 2016, the U.S. Department of Labor will release its highly-anticipated Final Rule and Exemptions addressing when a person providing investment advice with respect to an employee benefit plan or individual retirement…more
| Commercial Law & Contracts, Finance & Banking, Labor & Employment Law

Anti-Assignment Provision Bars Surgery Center’s $3.3 Million ERISA Benefits Claims

A federal district court in California held that the ILWU-PMA Welfare Benefit Plan’s anti-assignment provision barred Brand Tarzana Surgical Institute’s claim for benefits and thus dismissed the Institute’s claim for benefits. …more
| Civil Procedure, Commercial Law & Contracts, Finance & Banking, Labor & Employment Law

On Remand, District Court Rules for the Fiduciaries in Tatum v. R.J. Reynolds

The R.J. Reynolds defendants have again prevailed against allegations that they breached their fiduciary duties by divesting the RJR 401(k) plan of funds invested in Nabisco stock. Following remand by the Fourth Circuit, the…more
| Civil Procedure, Finance & Banking, Labor & Employment Law, Securities Law

ACA Reporting Update – The Final Stretch

After months of preparation and multiple iterations of (sometimes conflicting) IRS guidance, health coverage providers and applicable large employers are nearing the end of the 2015 reporting season under the Affordable Care Act…more
| Insurance, Labor & Employment Law, Taxation

Sixth Circuit Rules that Employer Can Terminate Retiree Health Benefits

The Sixth Circuit ruled that retirees of Moen Inc. were not entitled to lifetime health benefits upon finding that an underlying collective bargaining agreement (CBA) did not create vested rights to these benefits. Moen and its…more
| Civil Procedure, Commercial Law & Contracts, Finance & Banking, Labor & Employment Law

Retiree Health Benefits Case Remanded to District Court for Additional Fact Finding

On remand from the Supreme Court, the Sixth Circuit sent the parties in Tackett v. M&G Polymers USA, LLC back to the district court for additional factual determinations on whether the retirees who commenced the lawsuit had…more
| Civil Procedure, Commercial Law & Contracts, Finance & Banking, Labor & Employment Law

IRS Significantly Liberalizes Permitted Mid-Year Changes to Safe Harbor Plans

On January 29, 2016, the IRS issued Notice 2016-16 that provides guidance on mid-year changes to a safe harbor plan under sections 401(k) and 401(m) of the Internal Revenue Code. The guidance provides that a mid-year change…more
| Finance & Banking, Labor & Employment Law, Taxation

U.S. Supreme Court Holds ERISA Plan Cannot Enforce Equitable Lien Against Participant’s General Assets

On January 20, 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court reversed a decision by the Eleventh Circuit and held that when a ERISA plan participant obtains a third-party settlement subject to a plan’s subrogation provision, and then dissipates…more
| Civil Procedure, Civil Remedies, Commercial Law & Contracts, Finance & Banking, Labor & Employment Law

Big Employer Win in Wellness Program Case EEOC v. Flambeau

For the past couple of years, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has been challenging employer wellness programs for their alleged violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The most recent…more
| Civil Procedure, Civil Rights, Labor & Employment Law

Eighth Circuit Holds Service Provider Is Not A Plan Fiduciary In Excessive Fee Case

Continuing a trend in other Circuits, the Eighth Circuit held that a service provider that was contracted to provide the 401(k) plan’s investment options does not act as an ERISA fiduciary when, consistent with the terms of a…more
| Civil Procedure, Commercial Law & Contracts, Finance & Banking, Labor & Employment Law

Defined Benefit Plan Participant’s Action Mooted by ERISA Plan’s Improved Financial Condition

A federal district court in Minnesota dismissed a plan participant’s allegations that plan fiduciaries mismanaged a defined benefit plan — and thus caused it to be underfunded — because the plan’s financial condition improved…more
| Civil Procedure, Finance & Banking, Labor & Employment Law
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