News & Analysis as of

The First Step to Maximizing DC Plan Value is to Understand the Problem (Part I)

These days when people who work in the pension industry talk about the various options available to develop an effective pension risk management strategy, they are fond of pointing out that when it comes to looking at the...more

Final and Proposed Regulations on Hybrid Pension Plans

Plan sponsors have been granted limited relief to bring cash balance interest crediting rates into compliance. On September 18, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) published final and proposed regulations for cash...more

PBGC Intends to Monitor Lump-sum and Annuity Cashouts Under Defined Benefit Plans

The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) stated in a filing published in the Federal Register on September 23, 2014, that it intends to require that plan sponsors report to the PBGC “certain undertakings” to cashout or...more

Monthly Benefits Update

On August 8, President Obama signed legislation that extends certain “pension smoothing” provisions in the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (MAP-21) Act that was signed in 2012. This pension funding relief will...more

Righting a Wrong: The “Claim of Right” Doctrine and Other Tax Considerations for the Repayment of Pension Plan Overpayments

Pension plan overpayments to participants and their beneficiaries are an all-too-common occurrence. When overpayments occur, a plan administrator’s duties are fairly clear. Typically, the plan administrator must seek...more

Five New IRS Private Letter Rulings Confirm IRS’s Position Allowing Retiree Cashouts

We reported in 2012 on two private letter rulings (“PLRs”) issued by the IRS (PLR 201228045 and PLR 201228051) blessing certain retiree cashout programs. A retiree cashout program is a de-risking strategy used by defined...more

PBGC Supports Lifetime Income

The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) recently issued a proposed regulation designed to encourage participants in defined contribution plans (e.g., 401(k) plans) to roll over their account balances to their...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

Good Faith And Employee Communications: Landmark ruling in IBM UK Holdings Ltd and IBM UK Ltd v Dalgleish and others

Employers undertaking pension scheme benefit change processes need to give careful consideration not only to the detail of member communications, but also to the overall impression they give and to member expectations which...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

CRA Announcements re Regulation of Registered Pension Plans

The Canada Revenue Agency’s (CRA) Registered Plans Directorate (RPD) recently made two announcements that plan sponsors and administrators should be aware of: (i) a project to assess the compliance of DB plans; and (ii) a...more

Plan Sponsors of 401(k) Plans/Pension Plans: Must Recognize Same Sex Married Couples Effective September 16, 2013

On August 29, 2013, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) ruled that for federal tax purposes, spouse includes an individual who is legally married to a same-sex individual under state law. This Revenue Ruling 2013-17 has a...more

Benefits Bulletin - September 2013

A Troubled Multiemployer Pension Plan Means Big Trouble For Your Company - You can hardly pick up a newspaper or business magazine today without reading about the staggering costs of defined benefit multiemployer...more

First Circuit: Private Equity Fund May Be “Trade or Business” and Subject to Portfolio Company Pension Liabilities

The First Circuit Court of Appeals has recently held in Sun Capital Partners III, LP v. New England Teamsters & Trucking Industry Pension Fund, No. 12-2312 (July 24, 2013), a case of first impression at the Circuit Court...more

Canadian (and U.S.) Investment Funds Face New Risk of Pension Liability – What’s Keeping Fund Sponsors up at Night

The Issue: Commonly controlled trades or businesses are jointly and severally liable for pension liabilities under the U.S. Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA)....more

First Circuit Finds that a Private Equity Fund Can Be Liable for the Pension Obligations of its Portfolio Company

In Sun Capital Partners III, L.P. et al. v. New England Teamsters & Trucking Industry Pension Fund, No. 12-2312, 2013 WL 3814985 (1st Cir. July 24, 2013), the First Circuit held that a private equity fund could be liable for...more

The Problem With Retirement Plans

Over the past 30 years, a dramatic change has taken place in the use of retirement plans to help people save for their later years....more

PBGC Releases Revised Proposed Regulations Addressing Reportable Event Requirements under ERISA

Section 4043 of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) requires pension plan sponsors to report a variety of corporate and plan events to the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC). In November...more

401(k) Plans Are Just A Tool To Save, They’re Not Evil

Years ago B.K. (before kids), I took weekly golf lessons. While it never showed on the golf course, I was developing a nice game. I took lessons with a curmudgeon golf pro named Kenny and the lessons were at a golf store....more

Changes Afoot for ERISA “Reportable Event” Rules

As many as 90% of pension plans and pension plan sponsors may soon have fewer “reportable events” to track and report to the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (the “PBGC”), if certain proposed changes to the PBGC...more

The ERISA Litigation Newsletter - April 2013

Editor's Overview - The importance of clear and unambiguous plan language cannot be overstated. The Second Circuit recently applied this well-established principle to conclude that a plan's administrative claims process must...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

Carrigan Case: Supreme Court of Canada Dismisses Leave to Appeal

This morning, the Supreme Court of Canada dismissed the application for leave to appeal in Carrigan v. Carrigan Estate. As a result, the Ontario Court of Appeal’s new interpretation of the priority scheme for the payment of...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

Quebec Court of Appeal Refuses to Authorize Pension Class Action

The recent Quebec Court of Appeal decision in Rousselet v. Corporation de l’École polytechnique confirmed some useful legal principles in its analysis...more

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