Benefit Plan Sponsors

News & Analysis as of

The Big Picture of the Employer Shared Responsibility Tax

Ever since the Treasury Department in early 2014 issued final regulations on the employer shared responsibility tax (ESR tax)1 and the related final reporting regulations (ESR regulations)2 under the Patient Protection and...more

Wellness Programs Alive and Well?

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has issued proposed regulations under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) regarding employer-provided wellness programs that were published in the Federal Register on...more

EEOC Publishes Proposed Rule on How the ADA Applies to Employer Wellness Programs

Many employers offer corporate wellness programs to promote healthier lifestyles, prevent disease and reduce healthcare costs. These wellness programs may include, for example, nutrition classes, on-site exercise facilities,...more

Are Employee Wellness Programs OK Under the ADA? EEOC Says Yes, But...

Until recently, businesses looking to make sure that their employee wellness programs comply with the ADA were without much help from the EEOC—besides a series of surprisingly unhelpful opinion letters and a one-sentence...more

The Times are Changing: A First Look at the DOL’s New Fiduciary Paradigm

On April 14, 2015, the US Department of Labor (the “DOL”) issued its proposed rule clarifying when individuals and institutions providing advice to employee benefit plans and individual retirement accounts (“IRAs”) will be...more

Locke Lord QuickStudy: EEOC Proposes Rule Addressing Incentives in Employee Wellness Programs

On April 16, 2015, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) released a long-awaited proposed rule and supplemental guidance addressing employers’ use of incentives to encourage participation in employee wellness...more

EEOC Proposed Rule to Shed Light on Wellness Programs under the ADA

On April 20, 2015, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC") published a proposed new rule that would amend the regulations for Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act ("ADA") as they relate to employer...more

New Fiduciary Regulations Require Retirement Investment Advisers to Act in Clients’ Best Interests

On April 14, 2015, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) issued new proposed regulations that changed the definition of “fiduciary investment advice” as currently found in DOL Regulation 2510.3-21(c). These proposed rules also...more

An Army of One

A few years back, the Army unleashed a marketing campaign called “An Army of One.” The Sopranos has an episode called “An Army of One” when Jackie Jr. was whacked by Vito Spatafore. Around that time, I was working as an...more

DOL Proposes Sweeping Expansion of Fiduciary-Duty Rules

Proposed new guidance from the U.S. Department of Labor (“DOL”) would significantly alter the regulation of investment advice to employee plans and IRAs. The guidance aims to reshape the marketplace for retirement-related...more

Effect of a Check Notation: Void After 90 Days

On April 2, 2015, the IRS issued Rev. Proc. 2015-28, which provides new safe harbor correction methods for errors relating to automatic contribution features, including automatic enrollment and automatic escalation of...more

The DOL’s New Proposal on ERISA Fiduciary Status for Investment Advisers

Last week, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) issued its widely anticipated re-proposed rules for defining fiduciary status under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) for providers of investment advice...more

More ERISA Complications

In passing the Employee Retirement Security Act of 1974 (“ERISA”), Congress sought to make it as easy and economical as possible for employers to provide benefits to their workers; for example, pensions, health insurance,...more

Is Your Wellness Program Healthy? EEOC Provides Much Needed Guidance in Proposed Rule

On April 16, 2015, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) issued a proposed rule addressing how the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) applies to wellness programs that are part of group health plans and that...more

Department of Labor Issues Sweeping Fiduciary Rule Proposal

On April 14, 2015, the Department of Labor (DOL) released a proposal to re-define who is rendered a "fiduciary" of an employee benefit plan under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) by providing investment...more

The Worthlessness Of The 401(k) Fiduciary Warranty

I am a firm believer in the idea that what you see is what you should get. If you’re promised the moon, anything short of that is wrong. Some of the biggest disappointments in my life is when I was sold a bill of goods that...more

DOL Reproposes Expanded ERISA Fiduciary Definition and Revised Complex of Exemptions

On April 14, 2015, after 43 months in development, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) released its reproposal to expand the “investment advice fiduciary” definition under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974,...more

IRS Extends Temporary Coverage/Nondiscrimination Testing Relief for Closed Defined Benefit Plans

Under guidance issued in Notice 2015-28, the IRS extended relief from certain coverage/nondiscrimination testing requirements for defined benefit plans that have been closed to new participants but provide ongoing accruals...more

EEOC Proposes Wellness Program Regulations

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has proposed much-anticipated regulations regarding the use of employee health program under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The regulations are an attempt to...more

DOL Provides Greater Flexibility for Distribution of Annual Participant Fee Disclosure Effective Immediately

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) recently issued guidance providing defined contribution plan administrators with additional flexibility on the timing requirements for distribution of the required annual fee disclosure to...more

EPCRS Updates: New Guidance Eases Administration of Plan Corrections

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has released two Revenue Procedures providing guidance under the Employee Plans Compliance Resolution System (EPCRS) that will facilitate the correction of certain retirement plan defects....more

The U.S. Department of Labor's New Proposed Rules Defining Fiduciary Investment Advice

On April 14, 2015, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) issued its highly anticipated re-proposed regulation addressing when a person providing investment advice with respect to an employee benefit plan or individual retirement...more

IRS Modifies its Voluntary Retirement Plan Correction Procedures (EPCRS)

Under the IRS’s Employee Plans Compliance Resolution System (EPCRS), retirement plan sponsors may voluntarily request that the IRS approve certain corrections to a variety of plan administration errors before those errors are...more

Locke Lord QuickStudy: IRS Changes Retirement Plan Correction Program (EPCRS)

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) recently issued two revenue procedures that modify the Employee Plans Compliance Resolution System (EPCRS). EPCRS sets forth the various correction programs and correction methodologies for...more

Plan Sponsors should invest in a scanner

Being a plan sponsor is a tough job and the amount of paperwork that goes with it can be overwhelming. The paperwork includes plan documents, summary plan descriptions, amendment, valuations, trusts statements, and payroll....more

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