Retirement

News & Analysis as of

Supreme Court Dispenses With the Yard-Man Inferences

In a decision watched closely by both employers and unions, a unanimous Supreme Court has resolved a thirty-plus year split among the circuit courts on the standards governing claims for retiree health-care benefits arising...more

Ding-Dong, Yard-Man Is Dead! Supreme Court Decision in Tackett a Huge Win for Employers in the Retiree Healthcare Arena

On Monday, a unanimous United States Supreme Court issued its decision in M & G Polymers USA, LLC v. Tackett, Supreme Court Case No. 13-101, vacating and remanding the Sixth Circuit’s holding that a group of retirees was...more

Supreme Court Rejects Analysis of Duration of Retiree Benefits As Contrary to Contract Law

On January 26, 2015, the Supreme Court of the United States resolved a long-standing dispute between the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals and the remainder of the federal judiciary in a case concerning the extent to which...more

California Public Employees’ Pension Reform Act Of 2013 Partially Violates Prohibition Against Impairment Of Contracts When...

In Deputy Sheriffs' Association of San Diego County v. County of San Diego, et al., (January 11, 2015, D065364) 2015 WL 273138, the Fourth District Court of Appeal held that the provisions of the California Public Employees'...more

U.S. Supreme Court Rejects the Yard-Man Inference Vesting Lifetime Benefits for Union Retirees

In M&G Polymers USA, LLC v. Tackett, the U.S. Supreme Court overturned three decades of precedent by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, unanimously ruling that, when no specific provision in a...more

Supreme Court Rejects Yard-Man: Ordinary Contract Principles Apply When Interpreting Retiree Medical Promises

The Supreme Court has unanimously vacated a Sixth Circuit ruling that a collective bargaining agreement (CBA) vested retirees with lifetime medical benefits. M&G Polymers USA, LLC v. Tackett, No. 13-1010, 2015 U.S. LEXIS 759...more

Decision Alert: US Supreme Court Potentially Shifts the Balance in Healthcare Employee Benefits Litigation

Justice Clarence Thomas and a unanimous US Supreme Court decided to vacate a Sixth Circuit decision and hold that the federal courts cannot assume from silence in a union’s collective bargain agreement that retiree group...more

U.S. Supreme Court Rebukes Reliance on Yard-Man In Retiree Health Benefit Dispute

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the Sixth Circuit’s reliance on retiree-friendly inferences set forth in UAW v. Yard-Man are incompatible with ordinary principles of contract interpretation and should not be used when...more

Supreme Court Decides M & G Polymers USA, LLC v. Tackett

On January 26, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court decided M & G Polymers USA, LLC v. Tackett, No. 13-1010, holding that ordinary principles of contract law govern the interpretation of pension and insurance provisions of...more

Traditional Contract Rules Determine Whether Retirees Are Entitled to Lifetime Healthcare Benefits

Yesterday, in a unanimous decision, the U.S. Supreme Court held that courts must apply ordinary rules of contract interpretation when determining whether retiree healthcare benefits vest for life pursuant to the terms of a...more

Supreme Court Announces “Wipe-Out” of Yard-Man Presumption in Advance of Storm

With storm clouds threatening in the northeast, the Supreme Court cast a ray of sunlight for employers today by rejecting the use of a problematic inference in adjudicating claims for retiree benefits brought pursuant to...more

November and December 2014 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

Many Employee Retirement Plan Dollar Limits Adjusted For 2015

The Internal Revenue Code provides for various dollar limitations on benefits, contributions, and compensation for tax-qualified employee benefit plans. Recently, the Internal Revenue Service announced cost of living...more

Retirement Plan Limitations for 2015

Date: November 3, 2014 The Internal Revenue Service has announced cost of living adjustments affecting dollar limitations for retirement plan contributions and benefits for 2015. Highlights include the following...more

Year End Retirement Plan Compliance

An annual checkup of qualified retirement plan documents is a good preventative measure to ensure compliance with the myriad of rules and regulations governing such plans. As 2014 draws to a close, the next few weeks is the...more

What Is the Difference Between a 401(k) and an IRA?

The terms 401(k) and individual retirement account (IRA) are bandied about quite a bit when discussing retirement planning, but what are the actual differences between the two? The main distinction is that a 401(k) -- named...more

Right to Retire Or Termination: Remediation of Leadership To Foster Compliance

Many historians have long given 476 AD as the date of the fall of the Roman Empire. Further, it was from this date forward that Europe began its long slide into the abyss, which came to be known as the Dark Age. However, this...more

Retirement Plan Sponsors Should Know Their Role as Plan Fiduciaries

I love professional wrestling and I’m not afraid to admit. Yes, I know it’s not real just like I know the Ewings don’t live on Southfork Ranch. Maybe it’s in my blood since both of my grandfathers watch it, but I find the...more

When a Parent Retires, a Child with Disabilities Could Qualify for SSDI

When the parent of an adult with disabilities retires, the child may qualify for federal disability benefits, even if the child has never worked. This benefit, known as the Disabled Adult Child program, allows the...more

Ninth Circuit Joins First Circuit in Finding that the Elimination of a Pension Transfer Option does not Violate ERISA's...

In Anderson v. DHL Retirement Pension Plan, the Ninth Circuit followed the First Circuit in finding that the elimination of the right to transfer an account balance from a defined contribution plan to a defined benefit plan...more

Quit or Retired? It Makes No Difference When It Comes to Paying Final Wages in California

McLean v. State of California, No. C074515 (August 19, 2014): In a recent decision, a California Court of Appeal held that state law requirements for payment of final wages and waiting time penalties payable to employees who...more

Does your Company’s Retirement Plan Need to be Restated?

Between May 1, 2014 and April 30, 2016, all pre-approved defined contribution plans (e.g. most 401(k), profit sharing, money purchase and other qualified plans) must be restated to reflect the provisions of the Pension...more

District Court Certifies Class Challenging ERISA Plan Amendment

The Eastern District of Michigan has certified a class of ERISA plan participants challenging an amendment which, in attempt to address the plan’s underfunded status, reduced their monthly disability payments. The Court...more

Employee Benefits Developments - September 2014

CASES - Post-Retirement Medical Benefits Under Siege. A recent spike in retiree benefit litigation is evidence of a growing interest among employers in strategies designed to contain, reduce, and eliminate the current...more

Post-Retirement Medical Benefits Under Siege

A recent spike in retiree benefit litigation is evidence of a growing interest among employers in strategies designed to contain, reduce, and eliminate the current costs and balance sheet liabilities associated with...more

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