Employee Retirement Income Security Act Employee Benefits

Employee Retirement Income Security Act is a United States federal law enacted in 1974 to set minimum standards for pension and health plans in the private sector and to protect participants in those plans.... more +
Employee Retirement Income Security Act is a United States federal law enacted in 1974 to set minimum standards for pension and health plans in the private sector and to protect participants in those plans.  ERISA requires plans to provide information to participants, establishes a grievance process,  and allows participants to sue for benefits or breach of fiduciary duties.  less -
News & Analysis as of

Embezzlement of 401(k) Deferrals by COO of Architecture Firm is (Doubly) Costly

On March 22, 2017, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit ruled against Christine Bodouva that her restoration of funds to her Company’s 401(k) Plan should be offset against the District Court’s order for forfeiture...more

Sixth Circuit: ERISA Exhaustion Not Required in Plan Amendment Suit

The Sixth Circuit held that retirement plan participants were not required to exhaust their administrative remedies prior to bringing a claim alleging that a plan amendment violated ERISA....more

Nevada Supreme Court Weighs in Again on the Nevada Constitution’s Minimum Wage Amendment

On March 16, 2017, the Nevada Supreme Court issued yet another 6-0 en banc decision regarding the Nevada Constitution’s oft-litigated Minimum Wage Amendment, Nev. Cost. art. XV § 16 (“MWA” or the “Amendment”). The issues...more

Disgorgement Claims Continue To Confound Courts In ERISA Class Actions

Courts continue to be split over the availability of disgorgement and “accounting for profits” in ERISA class actions involving in-house investment plans. On March 3, 2017, in Brotherston v. Putnam Investments, LLC, No....more

Update – A Rule Deferred: Department of Labor Delays Implementation of Fiduciary Rule

As we previously reported in our February 16, 2017 blog post, “A Rule Deferred: Department of Labor Delays Implementation of Fiduciary Rule,” the DOL anticipated delaying the effective date of the fiduciary rule by 180 days. ...more

DOL Announces Temporary Enforcement Policy and Proposes to Extend Application of Rules Under Best Interest Contract Exemption by...

In response to a February 3, 2017 memorandum by the President to the Secretary of Labor, on March 2, 2017, the DOL proposed to extend for 60 days the applicability date for final rules on the Best Interest Contract Exemption...more

DOL Temporarily Forbears Enforcement of Fiduciary Duty Rule

The Department of Labor’s “fiduciary duty” Rule continues to get more bollixed up. DOL announced a temporary enforcement policy that will give a “free pass” for any violations (a) in the gap between effective date and delay,...more

Fiduciary Rule on Hold - DOL proposes to delay application of Fiduciary rule. ERISA plan fiduciaries and service providers...

On March 2, 2017, the Department of Labor (DOL) proposed to delay the applicability date of the “Fiduciary” rule by 60 days. The DOL issued the proposal in response to the February 3, 2017, Presidential Memorandum...more

Proposed Delay of the DOL Fiduciary Rule - What Should Financial Institutions Do?

On March 2, 2017, the Department of Labor’s (“DOL”) proposal to delay its change to the definition of the term “fiduciary” (the “Fiduciary Rule”) was published in the Federal Register. Against expectations, the proposed delay...more

Another ERISA Church Plan Class Action Settles

Citing to the “significant uncertainties in predicting the outcome” of their litigation “where the critical issue is pending before the Supreme Court (oral argument on the scope of ERISA’s church plan exemption is set in...more

Labor Department Boosts Disability Claimant Protections

The U.S. Department of Labor (USDOL) recently issued a final rule addressing disability benefit claims and appeals (see 81 FR 92316). The rule adds new procedural protections and safeguards meant to ensure disability...more

Does the Fiduciary Exception Apply to Legal Advice Received By Insurers During the Claims Process

Seyfarth Synopsis: Adding to the body of conflicting authority on the scope of the attorney-client privilege in ERISA lawsuits, a district court has found that the fiduciary exception to attorney-client privilege applies to...more

Final Disability Claims and Appeals Regulations – Be Prepared to Comply

In December 2016, the Department of Labor issued final regulations under ERISA governing claims procedures for group disability plans, which will become effective January 1, 2018. Generally, these regulations were drafted to...more

Red State Preemption Of Local Pay Equity Laws? — Stay Tuned

Seyfarth Synopsis: The 2016 elections had the effect of hardening the Red-Blue divide in the country. A number of Blue cities in Red States are enacting ordinances that implement the progressive political agenda, which of...more

Court Allows Retired President to Pursue Claim of Contract for Lifetime Pay and Benefits Against University

On February 7, 2017, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Kentucky ordered that the former President of the University of the Cumberlands, Dr. James Taylor, may proceed on his claims that the University failed...more

Employee Benefits Developments - February 2017

The Employee Benefits practice group is pleased to present the Benefits Developments Newsletter for the month of February 2017. March 31, 2020 Deadline for Amending 403(b) Plans - When the Internal Revenue Service...more

DOL Proposes to Delay Fiduciary and Beryllium Rules

In response to recent presidential directives, the U.S. Department of Labor is taking steps to delay the applicability and effective dates of two rules. First, the DOL's Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) has...more

USDOL Prevails in Kansas in Another Decision on Fiduciary Rule

On February 17, 2017, a federal district Court in Kansas upheld the U.S. Department of Labor’s conflict of interest rule and related exemptions in a suit brought by Market Synergy Group, Inc. This ruling on the merits follows...more

DOL Fiduciary Rule – What’s Next?

On an almost daily basis, there are developments regarding the status of the Department of Labor’s (“DOL”) fiduciary rule creating a climate of uncertainty. Stakeholders, such as financial institutions that serve retirement...more

DOL Issues New Guidance on Plan Fiduciaries' Proxy Voting Policies

The Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) published Interpretive Bulletin (IB) 2016-1 on Dec. 29, 2016, relating to the exercise of shareholder rights and written statements of investment policy, including proxy...more

New Disability Claims Procedures Rules Applicable to ERISA Plans

The U.S. Department of Labor has issued new regulations affecting how disability claims are handled under ERISA plans that provide disability benefits or base receipt of benefits on the existence of a disability. While most...more

DOL’s Fiduciary Rule Still in Limbo after Trump Memo and Federal Judge’s Ruling

Last week, President Trump issued a memorandum directing the Department of Labor (DOL) to reconsider implementation of the fiduciary rule. The fiduciary rule, which widens the scope of who is considered a “fiduciary” of an...more

DOL Fiduciary Rule Still On for April 10 Implementation

The Department of Labor’s Fiduciary Duty Rule remains on track for April 10 implementation, notwithstanding a maelstrom of hype about it. Nearly everyone expected the new administration would delay the Rule – and many...more

Implications of Trump's Memorandum on Status of Fiduciary Rule

President Donald Trump issued a memorandum on Feb. 3, 2017, directing the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) to reconsider the regulations that change the definitions of fiduciary and fiduciary advice. The regulations,...more

“But Our Vendor Handles Everything — How Can We Still Have Fiduciary Liability?”

As the rules governing retirement and health plans grow more complex, employers often need professional help in order to keep up with the day-to-day management of the employee benefit plans they sponsor. From third-party...more

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