News & Analysis as of

Monthly Benefits Update - December 2013

The following are the most significant employee benefits-related legal developments that occurred in December of 2013. At the beginning of 2013, after considering feedback from our clients and contacts who work in the...more

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 Developments Impact Retirement Plans and Other Employee Benefits

Year-End Amendments - The month of December is a bit different in 2013. Typically, we mark this time scrambling to amend 401(k), profit sharing, and money purchase plans in order to maintain their tax-qualified status....more

Employee Benefits Alert: New Developments Impact Retirement Plans & More

Year-End Amendments - The month of December is a bit different in 2013. Typically, we mark this time scrambling to amend 401(k), profit sharing, and money purchase plans in order to maintain their tax-qualified status....more

Tax-Qualified Retirement Plans: Amendments and Other Year-End Action Items - 11/21/2013

Plan sponsors should consider whether they need to make certain plan amendments or provide certain plan notices prior to the end of the year. The end of the year marks the deadline by which sponsors of qualified...more

Qualified Domestic Relations Orders: Little-Known Issues Involving Dividend Pass-Through Elections And Same-Sex Spouses

As most family law practitioners are aware, ERISA and the Internal Revenue Code (“IRC”) do not permit a participant in a retirement plan to assign or alienate his/her interest in that plan to another person. These rules are...more

IRS and DOL Guidance Clarifies Employee Benefits Impact of Supreme Court’s DOMA Ruling

Recent guidance issued by the U.S. Department of the Treasury, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and the Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) division of the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) provides some initial...more

How to Handle Employee Benefits with Same-Sex Marriages: BB&K's John Wahlin Looks at What Changes Should be Made in Light of the...

With this summer’s Supreme Court rulings on DOMA, the Defense of Marriage Act, and Prop. 8 allowing same-sex marriages to be recognized in states that allow them, private sector and public agency employers in California...more

IRS Clarifies Some Same-Sex Marriage Issues, But Leaves Retroactive Employee Plan Relief Open

Ever since the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the central provision of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) defining marriage as between a man and a woman, employee benefit plan sponsors have been seeking guidance on how to...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

Treasury Department Guidance on Same-Sex Spousal Status Requires Employers to Take Immediate Action on Employee Benefit Plans

Earlier this summer, following the Supreme Court's issuance of the landmark case, United States v. Windsor, which held Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) to be unconstitutional, we published an Executive Alert...more

Early Guidance Sheds Light on Impact of United States v. Windsor on Employee Benefit Plans

For many years, the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) defined marriage under federal law as a legal union between one man and one woman. In June 2013, however, in the case of United States v. Windsor, the Supreme Court of the...more

IRS Announces All Same-Sex Marriages Recognized For Federal Tax Purposes

Yesterday the U.S. Department of Treasury and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced that, as a result of the holding in U.S. v. Windsor that Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) is unconstitutional, the...more

First Post-Windsor ERISA Decision

In the first reported ERISA decision post-Windsor, the U.S District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania held (in Cozen O’Connor, P.C. v. Jennifer Tobits) that a same-sex spouse is to be treated as the decedent’s...more

What Does DOMA and Prop 8 Mean to You: The Employer?

After a year-long battle, Section 3 of the so-called Defense of Marriage Act ("DOMA"), which denied federal recognition of all state-sanctioned same-sex marriages, and California's Proposition 8 banning gay marriage are both...more

What To Do About DOMA? Recent U.S. Supreme Court Case Carries Significant Implications For Employee Benefit Plans - Employers Need...

On June 26, 2013, in U.S. v. Windsor, the U.S. Supreme Court held that Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act ("DOMA") was unconstitutional. Section 3 of DOMA provided that, for the purpose of any federal law, "marriage"...more

The Supreme Court’s DOMA Decision: What Does it Mean for Employee Benefit Plans?

On June 26, 2013, in U.S. v. Windsor, the United States Supreme Court struck down the portion of the Defense of Marriage Act (“DOMA”) that defined marriage as a legal union between one man and one woman. This decision will...more

Ramifications of the Overturning of DOMA on Employee Benefit Plans

On June 26, 2013, the United States Supreme Court overturned Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (“DOMA”), which required the federal government to deny married same-sex couples the rights and benefits provided to...more

Federal Tax Benefits Expanded to Certain Same-Sex Couples by U.S. Supreme Court

With the U.S. Supreme Court’s landmark ruling in United States v. Windsor on June 26, 2013, same–sex couples legally married in a state that recognizes same-sex marriage, and who reside in such a state, are now governed by...more

The DOMA Decision – Employee Benefit Plans Bracing for Impact

On June 26, 2013, the United States Supreme Court issued a landmark decision regarding same-sex marriage. While welcomed by proponents of marriage equality for same-sex couples, the decision left many unanswered questions...more

What the Supreme Court's Defense Of Marriage Act Ruling Means For Employers

On June 26, 2013, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act ("DOMA"), which barred federal recognition of same-sex marriages. ...more

The End of DOMA: Federal Tax and Benefits Implications

The US Supreme Court’s recent ruling in United States v. Windsor (“Windsor”) struck down key portions of the federal Defense of Marriage Act (“DOMA”) as unconstitutional. This decision will allow many same-sex spouses to...more

Defense of Marriage Act Struck Down – What it Means for Employers

The Supreme Court’s decision to strike down section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act will have a major impact on the benefits employers provide to employees. Pending IRS guidance, employers should review benefit plans and...more

Supreme Court DOMA Decision Is Far-Reaching, but Leaves Many Unanswered Questions for Employers

On June 26, 2013, the United States Supreme Court held in United States v. Windsor, that Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (“DOMA”) was “unconstitutional as a deprivation of the equal liberty of persons that is...more

Same-Sex Marriages and Benefit Plans After Windsor

On June 26, 2013, the Supreme Court issued its long-awaited decision in Windsor v. United States, No. 12-307. The Court ruled (in a 5-4 decision) that the section of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) that required federal...more

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