News & Analysis as of

Monthly Benefits Update - July 2014

Two federal appeals courts issued contradictory rulings on the validity of subsidies for the purchase of health insurance under the federal marketplace established pursuant to the Affordable Care Act (ACA). On July 22, a...more

Discriminatory Defined Benefit Plans: Finding Retirement Gold in the Least Likely of Places

We live in politically charged times. Congress seems unable to reach a consensus on anything, including where to have the annual congressional Christmas ball! Years of political crossfire over the Affordable Care Act have...more

Full disclosure: A practical guide for the HR professional when preparing the retirement plan portions of a proxy statement

In 2006, the SEC adopted rules which created the Pension Benefits Table and Nonqualified Deferred Compensation Table to supplement the Summary Compensation Table. The tables mandate certain specific disclosures with respect...more

Religious Institutions Update - Lex Est Sanctio Sancta

"Church plans" are pension plans (including defined benefit or defined contribution plans) exempt (without an irrevocable election) from many of the legal requirements of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA)...more

Differentiating Pension Issues: TBPs vs. CPP

We noticed last week after the federal government’s welcome announcement to commence a consultation process on target benefit plans (TBPs) that much of the media coverage and discussion focussed on the Canada Pension Plan...more

CalPERS Declares Wall Street Journal Wrong

The California Public Employees’ Retirement System has a well-deserved rap as a taxpayer drain. So to rehabilitate its image, the pension fund has produced a “study” purporting that public-worker pensions are California’s...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

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

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

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

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

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

Court Rewrites Plan to Increase Benefits

The Supreme Court’s 2011 CIGNA v. Amara decision suggested that an employer’s pension plan could be rewritten to remedy the employer’s failure to fulfill its disclosure obligations under the Employee Retirement Income...more

De-Risking U.S. Pensions Through Lump Sum Offers – What’s on the Front Burner for 2013?

Does your defined benefit plan have a lump sum option? Nearly forty percent of U.S. employers who sponsor defined benefit pension plans are at least “somewhat likely” to offer lump sums to retirees and vested terminated...more

Court Rules Pension Plan Members Not Entitled to Indexing

In a decision released this month, the Saskatchewan Court of Appeal ruled that members of the Saskatchewan public service pension plan are not entitled to indexed pension benefits, beyond what was already provided for in...more

Representations Of Future Tax Treatment To Induce Creation Of Pension Plan Are Not Actionable As A Matter Of Law

The California Fourth District Court of Appeal adopted the principle that it is inherently unreasonable for any person to rely on a prediction of future IRS enactment, enforcement, or non-enforcement of the law by someone...more

Indalex: What Are the Pension Implications?

On February 1, 2013, the Supreme Court of Canada released its much anticipated decision in Sun Indalex Finance, LLC v. United Steelworkers, a case which pitted the claims of pensioners against those of secured creditors in...more

New Concerns for Bondholders, Lenders and Other Creditors Following SCC’s Indalex Decision

On February 1, 2013, the Supreme Court of Canada (SCC) released its much-awaited decision in the Indalex case. While the central issue in Indalex was the priority of wind-up deficiencies in defined benefit pension plans...more

Indalex: Supreme Court of Canada Decision Released

The Supreme Court of Canada (“SCC”) recently released its much-anticipated decision in the Indalex Limited (“Indalex”) proceedings under the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act (the “CCAA Proceedings”). The decision is...more

Retirement and Pensions Update - Janurary 2, 2013

In This Update: Fiscal Cliff Deal Includes Provisions on Charitable Contributions and Roth Roll Overs; PBGC Testifies in Subcommittee Hearing on Multiemployer Plans; IRS Updates Retirement Plan Rules for Hurricane...more

Re Northern Sawmills Inc. – Court Considers Post-Indalex Pension Claims in Receivership

This is another post-Indalex pension deficit priority case. Due to factual differences from Indalex, however, the pension claims were largely rejected. In the fall of 2008, Northern Sawmills Inc. idled its operations and laid...more

Re Amcor Packaging: Court Corrects Plan Amendment Made in Error

After finding that an erroneous amendment to its pension plan had the unintended effect of increasing benefits payable under the plan to deferred vested members who elected to retire before their normal retirement date, Amcor...more

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