The Health Care Reform Act made many changes to health plans, but one thing it did not do was expressly eliminate or change the COBRA rules. Although health care reform does not expressly change COBRA, it does, in many ways,...more
When I was a child, I remember bringing the soundtrack to Saturday Night Fever for my first grade class’ Chanukah party (I went to a Jewish day school). To this day, I still don’t how to operate a record player. Around the...more
The George Clooney-Brad Pitt trilogy of heist films known as Ocean’s Eleven, Ocean’s Twelve, and Ocean’s Thirteen were remembered for their twist endings, stylish pacing, and lightheartedness. Since the Ocean gang were...more
According to 29 U.S.C. § 1132(c)(1)(B) of ERISA, it is within a court’s discretion to award a penalty of up to $110 per day based on an administrator’s failure to comply with a plan participant’s or beneficiary’s request for...more
If they made the poor Plan decisions, they may take offense on your criticism.
They will take offense.
Two years ago, I had the worst call with a prospective client in the 14 years I have been an ERISA attorney...more
Animal Farm by George Orwell was a clever allegory of the Bolshevik Revolution and the Soviet Union where the oppressed animals overthrew Farmer Mr. Jones, only to start oppress- ing each other. A similar situation is when I...more
The Sixth Circuit held in Hi-Lex Controls, Inc. v. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Michigan that a service provider was liable as a fiduciary under ERISA for unauthorized fees it assessed against a self-funded health plan. In...more
There has been a tremendous amount of focus on participant-assessed fees in 401(k) and 403(b) plans over the last couple of years. This has come about, in part, because of lawsuits and the Department of Labor (DOL)...more
Editor's Overview -
In this month's issue, our authors address severance benefit claims and ERISA disclosure requirements. In our first article, Joe Clark addresses whether a plan administrator should conduct an...more
The Internal Revenue Service recently established a one-year pilot program that provides plan administrators and plan sponsors of certain non-ERISA and foreign plans subject to the annual Form 5500 reporting requirements...more
I prepare my own income taxes because my tax LLM degree and years working on ProSeries gave me the experience to effectively do that. When it comes to treating my allergies, I delegate that role to the person with the medical...more
The Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions has posted guidance (the Guideline) on the question of whether a fund established as a limited partnership by a corporation meets the definition of “pooled fund” or...more
I talk to a lot of advisors and I have many advisor clients around the country and one of the things that I keep on hearing is that even with fee disclosure regulations almost 2 years later, it is still difficult to get...more
Aside from my children and my wife, my favorite person of all-time was my grandmother Rose. In a few weeks, it would have been her 90th birthday and I wish she could have made it because she was the most selfless person I...more
It is well known that in enacting the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 ("ERISA"), 29 U.S.C. § 1001 et. seq., Congress set forth a requirement that a Summary Plan Description ("SPD") be furnished to participants...more
The Department of Labor recently issued updated model COBRA continuation coverage and Childrens’ Health Insurance Program (“CHIP”) notices. Plan administrators should begin using the new notices immediately.
There are few sure things in life, and although it is probably safe to say that ERISA disclosure regulations would not be considered one of them, there has certainly been a steady stream of new ERISA-related disclosure and...more
Recently, the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit released an opinion which highlights the importance of ensuring ERISA plan documents grant plan administrators the discretion to construe and interpret the...more
Plan administrators charged with administering Employee Retirement Income Security Act-governed severance plans are often confronted with the question of whether they should conduct an independent investigation into the...more
I always believe that regardless of whether it’s business or in regular day-to-day life, that you can’t be everything for everybody. Being honest with that is only half the battle.
A lot of times, I met folks who are...more
Retirement plan administrators routinely receive requests from employees to accept rollover contributions of amounts held in a prior employer’s qualified plan or, in some cases, an IRA. When processing these requests, plan...more
There has been much confusion and concern about the interplay between the COBRA continuation coverage rules and the new Health Insurance Marketplace established under the Affordable Care Act (the “Marketplace”). One important...more
In the movie, No Country for Old Men, the hit man Anton Chigurh (played by Javier Bardem) confronts Carson Wells (who was also trying to recover the same money Chigurh was after) in his hotel room.
Do you have it?
It will determine whether you'll be a big hit or not.
When it comes to being a retirement plan provider and selling your services, you have to have it. Those who have it, succeed. Those who don't,...more
Are you seeing more ERISA Plaintiffs asserting claims seeking penalties for delayed production of ERISA-related documents?
29 U.S.C. 1132(c)(1) allows the Court to impose penalties of up to $110 per day for delays in...more
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