Retirement Plan 401k Employee Benefits

News & Analysis as of

Most Midyear Safe Harbor Plan Amendments Now Allowed

Many employers offering a retirement plan utilize a safe harbor 401(k) plan for the convenience and level of security afforded to the employer by its use. However, until recently, the IRS has not expressly permitted...more

IRS Provides Welcome Guidance on Mid-Year Amendments to Safe Harbor 401(k) Plans

The IRS recently issued Notice 2016-16 (the “Notice”), which permits most mid-year amendments to safe harbor 401(k) plans.  This is welcome news to sponsors of safe harbor 401(k) plans who, prior to the issuance of the...more

Safe! Mid-Year Changes to Safe Harbor Plans Permitted

The Internal Revenue Service recently issued long-awaited relief to sponsors of safe harbor 401(k) plans. For years, many employers have relied on various safe harbor plans designs to avoid generally applicable...more

February 2016 IRS Issues Notice on Midyear Changes to Safe Harbor Plans and Safe Harbor Notices

On January 29, 2016, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) released Notice 2016 - 16 , which provides, effective immediately, significant relief with respect to the ability of a plan sponsor to make midyear changes to a safe...more

IRS Relaxes Rules for Mid-Year Changes

Since its availability, many 401(k) plan sponsors, particularly smaller employers have adopted a “Safe Harbor” plan design under Code Section 401(k)(12) or (13) and 401(m)(11) or (12). Safe Harbor plan designs include both a...more

ERISA Claim Knocked Off the Pedestal - Provider of 401(k) Investment Platform Held Not to Have Fiduciary Liability

Over the years, U.S. employers that sponsor “401(k)” and other retirement plans, and plan fiduciaries, have increasingly become the subject of significant and potentially expensive litigation under the Employee Retirement...more

How to Deal with Employees

I always say that the main reason that I don’t want to have employees is because I was an employee once too. The union lawyers I worked with just didn’t understand the whole dynamic of the employer-employee relationship. They...more

IRS Retirement Plan Limitations for 2016

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has issued the new 2016 retirement plan limitations. In this announcement, the IRS sets forth the limits of the amounts that can be deferred under 401 (k) plans, 457 (b) plans and the...more

IRS Announces 2016 Retirement Plan Limitations – Most Limits Remain Unchanged

The Internal Revenue Service announced the 2016 cost-of-living adjustments to the dollar limitations for qualified retirement plans and other benefits, and the Social Security Administration announced its own cost-of-living...more

2016 Cost of Living Increases are Rare

On October 21, 2015, in Information Release 2015-118, the IRS announced cost-of-living adjustments to various dollar limitations under the Internal Revenue Code (the "Code") for pension plans and other related items for the...more

2016 Cost-of-Living Adjustments for Retirement and Other Benefit Plans

The IRS recently announced the 2016 cost-of-living adjustments to various benefit and contribution limits applicable to retirement plans and welfare plans. Most retirement plan limits have not changed because increases in the...more

IRS Annual Limits on Qualified Plans

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has released the 2016 cost of living adjustments affecting dollar limits on benefits and contributions under qualified retirement plans and health savings accounts, which are largely...more

IRS Releases Inflation Adjustments for 2016

Each year, the IRS calculates cost of living and inflation adjustments and determines how much certain limits and thresholds should be adjusted, if at all, for the upcoming tax year. The IRS released Revenue Procedure 2015-53...more

Benefit and Contribution Limits for 2016

The Commissioner of Internal Revenue announced yesterday that the dollar limitations for benefits and contributions that apply to retirement plans generally will not change for 2016 because the increase in the cost-of-living...more

2016 Benefit Plan Limits and Thresholds: Few Changes from 2015

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has announced various 2016 benefit plan limits and thresholds. In most cases, there are no changes from 2015. According to the IRS, in general, the retirement plan limitations will not...more

Employee Benefits – Do Employers Owe a 401(k) Fiduciary Duty?

Back in July, we discussed how Jed Clampett of Mama’s Fried Pies caused his VP of marketing Elly May to suffer exorbitant taxes due to a deferred bonus that he offered.  This month, Jed finds himself again in the grease with...more

A Summary Plan Description Can be a Plan Document

In a decision issued a couple of years ago, the United States Supreme Court held that a summary plan description that differed from the plan document could not be enforced as the plan document. The Court said that the summary...more

Department of Treasury Issues 2015-2016 Priority Planning Guide

The Department of the Treasury issued its 2015-2016 Priority Guidance Plan detailing projects that it intends on dedicating resources to in the coming year. There are numerous employee benefits-related items in the plan....more

Employee Benefits Developments August 2015

Certain Closely Held For-Profit Employers Need Not Provide Women’s Contraceptive Services. Under the ACA, non-grandfathered group health plans must cover specified preventive services, including certain women’s preventive...more

DOL Hearings Debate “Fiduciary Duty” not “Suitability” Standard for Retirement Accounts

The U.S. Department of Labor (“DOL“) recently heard public comment to its proposed regulatory changes implementing a fiduciary duty on any individual receiving compensation for advice tailored to a plan sponsor, participant...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

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

Employee Benefits Developments - June 2015

Supreme Court: Plan Fiduciaries Have a Continuing Duty to Monitor Plan Investments. In 2007, participants and beneficiaries under a 401(k) plan sued the plan fiduciaries and the plan sponsor to recover damages for alleged...more

New Oregon Laws: Criminal Background Checks and State Retirement Savings Plan - “Ban the Box” and Oregon Retirement Savings Plan...

Two new Oregon laws establish policies regarding employer criminal background checks and questions for applicants and a state-run retirement savings plan. In part, Enrolled House Bill 3025 (HB 3025) bans the practice by some...more

House and Senate Appropriations Committees Approve Funding Bills with Riders Targeting DOL, NLRB Initiatives

Both the House and Senate Appropriations Committees advanced bills this week to fund various federal agencies for FY 2016. Each chamber approved versions of spending measures that include riders prohibiting funding for a...more

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