Employee Benefits

News & Analysis as of

Latest on Uber: Are the Drivers Employees or Independent Contractors?

The California Labor Commission recently ruled an Uber driver was an employee of Uber–as opposed to an independent contractor–and therefore must be reimbursed approximately $4,000.00 for expenses she incurred as an Uber...more

Governor Rauner and AFSCME Extend Master Agreement, But Only Through September

Earlier this week, Governor Rauner and AFSCME Council 31, the union representing almost 40,000 state workers, agreed to temporarily extend the terms of the 2012-2015 collective bargaining agreement (CBA) and prohibit a strike...more

Illinois Releases Pregnancy Accommodation Proposed Rules

The Illinois Department of Human Rights (IDHR) released proposed rules regulating pregnancy discrimination and accommodation in employment. Released on July 17, 2015, these rules are authorized by the Illinois Pregnancy...more

Employee Benefits Developments - July 2015

Second Circuit Holds That Posthumous QDROs Are Valid. Yale-New Haven Hospital brought an action in federal court to resolve competing claims by a former spouse of a deceased participant and the deceased participant’s...more

Employee Benefits After Obergefell

In a historic decision, the United States Supreme Court in Obergefell v. Hodges recently held that the Fourteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution requires all jurisdictions in all fifty states to: (1) license a...more

Revisit employment policies in light of Supreme Court’s same-sex marriage ruling

Since December 2013, when the U.S. District Court for the District of Utah concluded that Utah’s definition of marriage as the union between only a man and a woman was unconstitutional, the validity of same-sex marriage has...more

Multiemployer Pension Plans - Withdrawal Liability is Mounting

There are approximately 1,400 multiemployer pension plans and nearly 10 percent are projected to become insolvent within the next 15 years. Plan insolvency will trigger a termination and the assessment of withdrawal...more

Employee Benefits: A Major Curtailment of the IRS Determination Letter Program Will Impose New Compliance Burdens on Sponsoring...

The Internal Revenue Service ("IRS") announced, on July 21, 2015, a major curtailment of its determination letter program for individually designed qualified retirement plans ("Individually Designed Plans") that will impose...more

Benefits Litigation Update – July 2015

Welcome to the new, rejuvenated version of the Benefits Litigation Update, which we bring you jointly with the law firm of Epstein Becker Green. Our goal is to provide a concise and, we hope, insightful glimpse into recent...more

New Developments in Protections for LGBT Workers

It’s been a busy few weeks for developments in the area of LGBT rights since the Supreme Court’s decision in King v. Burwell , 576 U.S. ___ (2015)....more

New California Law Recognizes Cheerleaders as Employees Not Independent Contractors

Amid recent review of employees being misclassified as independent contractors, which may not entitle them to overtime, sick days and other protections, California governor Jerry Brown signed a bill into law requiring that...more

GASB Changes Governmental Entity Accounting Disclosure Rules for Retiree Health Benefits

The General Accountability Standards Board (GASB) recently issued new standards that govern the disclosure of post-employment benefits in financial statements. Specifically, new GASB standards require state and municipal...more

The IRS Tosses Plan Sponsors a Curveball: New Guidance Throws Out One Method of Pension Plan De-Risking

In recent guidance, the IRS surprised plan sponsors with its plan to prevent them from using one means of “de-risking” their defined benefit pension plans to reduce their pension plan liabilities. In Notice 2015-49, the IRS...more

Preemption Law Results Show Different Approaches States Take with Local Sick Leave Measures

2015 has been a notable year for the passage and implementation of local mandatory paid sick leave (PSL) laws. In addition to statewide laws taking effect in California and Massachusetts, new local laws have taken effect in...more

Supremes Tell States Gay Marriage is Legal

Recently, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down state laws the prohibit gay marriage in Obergfell v. Hodges, No. 14-556 (June 26, 2015), First, the Court held that the Fourteenth Amendment requires a State to license a marriage...more

Obergefell v. Hodges – Same-Sex Marriage Now Legal in all 50 States

Same-sex Marriage Now Legal in All 50 States - In 2013, the Supreme Court, in United States v. Windsor, struck down Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (“DOMA”) which defined marriage, for Federal purposes, as...more

Focus on Private Equity - July 2015

What Private Equity Funds Should Know About ERISA: Basics of ERISA Coverage - The Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, as amended (ERISA) imposes numerous duties on fiduciaries holding employee benefit...more

The EEOC Rules That Existing Federal Law Prohibits Employment Discrimination Based On Sexual Orientation

In a landmark ruling on July 15, 2015 in _____ [name of charging party kept secret] v. Foxx, EEOC Appeal No. 2012-24738–FAA-03 (July 15, 2015), the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC’) held for the first time...more

Health and Welfare Benefits for Same-Sex Spouses after Obergefell: A New Mandate for Employers?

After last month’s decision by the U.S. Supreme Court in Obergefell v. Hodges, employee benefit plan sponsors may wonder whether Obergefell affirmatively imposes an obligation for employers to provide health, life,...more

ERISA’s Exhausting and Exasperating Exhaustion Requirement and the Exceptions Medical Providers Seeking Full Reimbursement From...

The first Alert in this two-part series discussed three common issues facing out-of-network medical providers in asserting reimbursement claims against employee benefits plan administrators (whether an insurance company or...more

Connecticut Takes Next Steps Toward Implementing Paid Family and Medical Leave

In a recently enacted budget measure, Connecticut has moved one step closer to implementing statewide paid family and medical leave for employees. However, details about funding and the extent of coverage that any ultimately...more

Did You Know…Amendments to California’s Mandatory Paid Sick Leave Law Effective Immediately

Significant amendments to California’s new Paid Sick Leave Law, the Healthy Workplace, Healthy Families Act of 2014, went into effect immediately upon Governor Brown’s signature on July 13, 2015. The amendments include the...more

Updates to California's Paid Sick Leave Law

California Governor Jerry Brown has signed a bill intended to cure some of the ambiguities in the state’s new paid sick leave law that have been a headache for employers. The Healthy Workplaces, Healthy Families Act of 2014...more

IRS Moves to Prohibit Lump Sum Windows for Retirees

The IRS issued Notice 2015-49 (the "Notice") on July 9, 2015, effectively ending the ability of sponsors of qualified defined benefit pension plans ("DB Plan") to "de-risk" their plans by offering participants in pay status...more

The Obergefell Decision and Employers

The recent United States Supreme Court decision in Obergefell v. Hodges significantly altered the legal landscape with respect to same-sex marriages, finding that the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution...more

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