News & Analysis as of

Year-End Health and Retirement Plan Guidance Grab Bag

Following Hawaii’s enactment of legislation recognizing same-sex marriage as of and after December 2, 2013 a number of additional pieces of guidance were also issued. Internal Revenue Service’s Frequently Asked Questions...more

New Wellness Program Rules for 2014

Employers continue to look for ways to manage the cost of employee health care coverage as they navigate the turbulent waters of healthcare reform, and wellness programs continue to be a popular strategy. However, adoption...more

More About HRAs And Some About EAPs

I blogged recently about IRS and Department of Labor (DOL) guidance restricting the ability of employers to subsidize individual health insurance premiums for their employees after December 31, 2013. That IRS and DOL guidance...more

Windsor & DOMA: Issues for Cross-Border Employers

On June 26, 2013, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in U.S. v. Windsor that Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (“DOMA”), which defined “marriage” as strictly between opposite-sex couples and “spouse” as referring only to a...more

Supreme Court Finds DOMA to Be Unconstitutional -- Impact on Employers Explained

On June 26, 2013, a majority of the Supreme Court held in United States v. Windsor that Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which defined marriage for purposes of federal law as the union of a man and a woman, is...more

U.S. Supreme Court Rules Section 3 of DOMA is Unconstitutional: What Should Employee Benefit Plan Sponsors and Administrators Be...

The Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) provides a single definition of marriage, as between one man and one woman, for purposes of all federal laws, including the Internal Revenue Code and ERISA....more

Health Insurance Carriers Must Also Be Careful In What They Tell Plan Participants

I blogged recently warning employers to be careful when enrolling employees in plan benefits because the employer could be responsible to pay life insurance or disability benefits if an employee who is improperly enrolled...more

A Primer on “Low-Cost” Group Health Plans

A May 10 Wall Street Journal article, “Employers Eye Bare-Bones Health Plans Under New Law” (see the associated video on WSJ Live), highlighted a compliance strategy to minimize employer exposure for assessable payments under...more

The View From Proskauer: Health Care Reform Litigation Risks —The Intersection of ERISA Section 510 and the Affordable Care Act’s...

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) is significantly changing employer health care obligations under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA). Prior to ACA, the Supreme Court held that ERISA did not require employers to...more

High Court Holds Equitable Defenses Do Not Trump ERISA Plan’s Clear Reimbursement Language

The Supreme Court’s April decision in U.S. Airways, Inc. v. McCutchen resolves a circuit split on the issue of a medical plan’s right to reimbursement of medical expenses from a plan participant who recovers on a personal...more

Monthly Benefits Update - March 2013

Health Care Reform: Agencies Issue Proposed Regulations on 90-Day Waiting Period Limitation - On March 21, the IRS, DOL, and Department of Health and Human Services issued proposed regulations on the 90-day waiting...more

Same-Sex Marriage Cases: Are Your Benefit Plans Prepared?

News articles, social media, protests, and lunchroom conversation were all dedicated to the two cases before the U.S. Supreme Court this week. Hollingsworth v. Perry and Windsor v. United States could potentially transform...more

SCOTUS Declines Review in Case Allowing Health Care Provider to Pursue State Law Misrepresentation Claims Against ERISA Health...

The United States Supreme Court recently denied certiorari in a Fifth Circuit case, United Healthcare Insurance Co. v. Access Mediquip LLC, that allowed a health care provider to pursue state law misrepresentation claims...more

Supreme Court Review of Same-Sex Marriage Cases Could Require Significant Changes to Employee Benefits

In our 2012 End of Year Plan Sponsor “To Do” Lists, we indicated that there was a strong possibility that the Supreme Court would grant certiorari this term in a series of cases challenging Section 3 of the Defense of...more

The ERISA Litigation Newsletter - February 2013

In This Issue: - Editor's Overview - View from Proskauer: Are Your Conversations Privileged under ERISA? - Rulings, Filings, and Settlements of Interest ...more

Filing and Notice Deadlines for Qualified Retirement and Health and Welfare Plans

Employers and plan sponsors must comply with numerous filing and notice deadlines for their retirement and health and welfare plans. Failure to comply with these deadlines can result in costly penalties and excise taxes. To...more

2013 Filing and Notice Deadlines for Qualified Retirement and Health and Welfare Plans

Employers and plan sponsors must comply with numerous filing and notice deadlines for their retirement and health and welfare plans. Failure to comply with these deadlines can result in costly penalties and excise taxes. To...more

The ERISA Litigation Newsletter - December 2012

In This Issue: - Editors' Overview - Supreme Court Revisits Meaning of 'Appropriate Equitable Relief' in US Airways v. McCutchen - Rulings, Filings, and Settlements of Interest ...more

Filing and Notice Deadlines for Qualified Retirement and Health and Welfare Plans

Employers and plan sponsors must comply with numerous filing and notice deadlines for their retirement and health and welfare plans. Failure to comply with these deadlines can result in costly penalties and excise taxes. To...more

Domestic Partner and Same-Sex Marriage Laws: Approval of Washington Marriage Equality Act and Impact on Employee Benefits

On Nov. 6, 2012, Washington voters approved same-sex marriage in Washington state. This advisory explains the impact of this new law on employee benefit plans and procedures, and revisits the treatment of employee benefits...more

Consumer Driven Health Care 2.0: Are Private Health Insurance Exchanges the New ‘Killer App’?

Originally published in Tax Management Weekly Report on 11/05/2012. In a September 27, 2012, front page article, the Wall Street Journal reported that Sears Holdings Corp. and Darden Restaurants, Inc., had adopted a...more

What To Do with an MLR Rebate Check?

Insurers have begun issuing medical loss ratio (MLR) rebate checks for 2011. Particularly when an MLR rebate is small, you may be tempted to put the check in a drawer and forget about it. Employers should resist that impulse...more

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