Defined Benefit Plans

News & Analysis as of

Old Days – Remembering When Small Business Had Pension Plans

We lived in politically charged times. Congress seems unable to reach any consensus on anything including where to have the annual Congressional Christmas Ball! Years of political crossfire over the Affordable Care Act have...more

NJ Federal Court Rules Pension Plan Established By Church-Controlled Hospital Not an ERISA-Exempt Church Plan

On March 31, 2014 the U.S. District Court in New Jersey held that a defined benefit pension plan established by St. Peter’s Healthcare System was not a church plan exempt under ERISA despite the fact that St. Peter’s is...more

This is What a TPA Does and Why a Retirement Plan Sponsor Should Hire a Good One

One of my favorite movies of all time is The Deer Hunter. It’s a story about the Vietnam War and the post-traumatic stress disorder a group of friends from Western Pennsylvania who were drafted together and fought alongside...more

The needs of the Plan outweigh the needs of the Plan Provider

A family member once said: “there are a lot of yous (sic) and only one me.” That may not be the nicest and most selfless thing to say, but that’s something retirement plan sponsors should think when it comes to the needs of...more

Court's Tentative Decision on San Jose's Pension Reform Measure Appears to Favor City

However, the Vested Rights Doctrine Proves Fatal to Core Pension Reform Measures - A tentative decision on the legal challenges to the City of San Jose’s pension reform measure, Measure B, was released late last month....more

CalSTRS Extends Time to Elect to have Service Count Toward CalSTRS Retirement

CalSTRS recently issued new guidance that applies when a CalSTRS member changes to a new position that may not be eligible for participation in the retirement system. The guidance, found in Employer Information Circular,...more

Year End Employee Benefits Checklist

2013 brought many changes to employee benefit plans, and several more are coming in 2014. Dinsmore’s Compensation and Benefits Group wants you to be prepared for year-end and upcoming changes. ...more

Pension News - November 2013

In This Issue: - Automatic enrolment - The Pensions Regulator - Pension Protection Fund - Department for Work and Pensions - Case law - Other News - On The Horizon - Contact Details -...more

10 Concepts That Every Retirement Plan Sponsor Should Know

Unless they are involved in the retirement plan industry a plan sponsor must delegate much of their duties to retirement plan providers that may include third party administrators (TPAs), financial advisors, and ERISA...more

IRS and DOL Guidance Clarifies Employee Benefits Impact of Supreme Court’s DOMA Ruling

Recent guidance issued by the U.S. Department of the Treasury, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and the Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) division of the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) provides some initial...more

What DOMA’s Demise Means for New York Employers and Benefit Plan Sponsors

On June 26, 2013, in United States v. Windsor, 133 S. Ct. 2675 (2013), the United States Supreme Court ruled that Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act of 1996 (“DOMA”) violated the Fifth Amendment’s equal protection...more

State of the Union - Part 4: Medical Expense Account

Overview - Over the course of this series, I have been pontificating on a number of points. First, ERISA and tax regulation have in my view had the unintended effect of reducing benefits for workers and business owners...more

UK Supreme Court rules on priority ranking of pension liabilities in company insolvencies

On 24th July the UK Supreme Court handed down its unanimous decision in relation to the LBIE/Nortel appeal, overturning the previous Court of Appeal and first instance judgments....more

Benefit Issues in Puerto Rico: Impact of the ACA, ERISA and the PBGC

This article highlights some recent developments that employers with Puerto Rico employee benefits arrangements should consider concerning compliance with U.S. federal laws on health care reform and the Patient Protection and...more

Verizon De-Risking Challenge Dismissed – Maybe Not Ended

U.S. defined benefit plan sponsors have been eager to explore de-risking options to control asset volatility and remove pension liabilities from their balance sheets. A report jointly issued on June 25 by the consulting firm...more

Supreme Court Rules DOMA Unconstitutional – Employee Benefit Plan Implications

Yesterday, the U.S. Supreme Court, in U.S. v. Windsor, ruled that Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) is unconstitutional because it violates the Fifth Amendment’s equal protection guaranty for persons of the same...more

U.S. Supreme Court Ruling: Defense of Marriage Act ("DOMA")

While the U.S. Supreme Court(the “Court”) ruled section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (“DOMA”) unconstitutional, that does not mean that the changes for human resources departments and employee benefits plans can be...more

Pension Plan De-Risking (Part II) – A Closer Look at DB Plan De-Risking Options

There is a broad spectrum of pension de-risking options available to defined benefit (DB) plan sponsors and administrators. In this post (the second of a two-part series) I consider these options and some of the related legal...more

Pension Plan De-Risking (Part I) – What Trends do we See in Canada?

An increasing number of public and private sector employers around the world are either abandoning the traditional defined benefit (DB) pension plan model in favour of more affordable and sustainable alternative arrangements,...more

Federal court imposes personal liability for multiemployer pension plan liabilities

A recent case highlights the risk of personal liability for multiemployer and other defined benefit pension plan liabilities. Owners of closely held corporations that contribute to multiemployer or single employer defined...more

Second Circuit Further Curtails Duty of Prudence Claims in Saint Vincent Catholic Medical Centers v. Morgan Stanley

In a line of recent cases, the 2nd Circuit has limited ERISA plaintiffs’ claims for breach of the duty of prudence by holding that investments of benefit plan funds in employer securities pursuant to plans calling for such...more

PBGC Releases 4062(e) Enforcement Guidelines

ERISA section 4062(e) addresses situations in which an employer ceases operations at a facility in any location and, as a result, separates more than 20% of its employees who participate in the employer’s defined benefit...more

PBGC Seeks Involuntary Plan Termination before Plan Sponsor’s Proposed Share Sale

On April 18, 2013, PBGC filed a complaint (PBGC v. Saint-Gobain Corp. Benefits Comm., E.D. Pa. Case No. 13-02069) to involuntarily terminate a defined benefit plan sponsored by Saint-Gobain Containers, Inc. before Ardagh...more

PBGC Withdraws Two Territorial Coverage Opinion Letters Impacting Puerto Rican Plans

The status of PBGC coverage for Puerto Rico defined benefit plans is one that has been the subject of review and analysis by the PBGC for quite some time. Most recently, on April 19, 2013, the PBGC withdrew two older opinion...more

De-Risking On Trial? U.S. Verizon Litigation Still Active

In our March 13 webinar on de-risking defined benefit pension plans, I stated that the U.S. litigation launched by a group of Verizon retirees challenging the annuitization of their pensions was not dead, even though a...more

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