News & Analysis as of

Employee Benefits

IRS Publishes Pension Plan Limitations for 2018

by Littler on

On October 19, 2017, the Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) announced cost of living adjustments affecting dollar limitations for pension plans and other retirement-related items for the 2018 tax year. The list below details...more

Benefit and Contribution Limits for 2018

by Williams Mullen on

The Commissioner of Internal Revenue announced the 2018 dollar limitations for benefits and contributions that apply to retirement plans. Some limits have increased while others remained the same....more

Executive Order on Association Health Plans Could Benefit Employers

by Barley Snyder on

Stymied by the lack of congressional progress toward repealing, replacing or reforming the Affordable Care Act (ACA), President Trump has in recent days issued a number of directives affecting various aspects of the law....more

Pensions Newsletter – October 2017

Welcome to the 19th issue of the Blakes Pensions Newsletter. This newsletter provides a summary of recent jurisprudential developments that affect pensions and benefits and is not intended to be legal advice....more

Federal Relief for Employee Benefits Plans Affected by Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria

by Reed Smith on

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Department of Labor (DOL), and Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) have issued compliance guidance and a new law has been enacted providing employee benefits-related relief for...more

2018 Benefit Limits

Retirement Plan Limits - The IRS updated very few of the retirement plan limits effective for the plan year that begins on or after January 1, 2018. Social Security Tax and Wage Base - For calendar year 2018, the...more

IRS Announces Year 2018 Retirement Plan Limits

by Blank Rome LLP on

The Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) announced today, October 19, 2017, the following dollar limits applicable to tax-qualified plans for 2018: - The limit on the maximum amount of elective contributions that a person may...more

So You Want to Give Your Employee a Bonus?

by Foley & Lardner LLP on

There are many reasons employers give bonuses to employees. Bonuses are a motivator. They effectively reward past contributions. Bonuses also allow employers to provide additional compensation to the workforce on a one-time...more

Smaller Employers in California Required to Provide Job-Protected Unpaid Parental Leave Starting January 1, 2018

Governor Jerry Brown has signed the New Parent Leave Act, which will become effective January 1, 2018 and requires California employers with 20 to 49 employees within 75 miles to provide up to 12-weeks of job-protected unpaid...more

Paid Family Leave Policies May Not All Be Equal: Starbucks Investors Questioning Differing Application of Paid Family Leave Policy

If your company has a family leave policy that goes beyond the legal requirements of the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), does that policy need to apply to all employee levels equally? No. But as Starbucks is currently...more

ESOPs: An Alternative Exit Strategy for Family-Owned Businesses

One of the most difficult challenges for owners of family-owned businesses is finding a way to turn their equity in the business into cash. Also, after putting years of hard work into a business, owners often have a desire...more

Back in the Spotlight: The Affordable Care Act Again Takes Center Stage

by Ballard Spahr LLP on

After a brief lull in activity, recent developments are likely to involve all three branches of government in addressing issues under the Affordable Care Act....more

The Future is Freelance

by Fisher Phillips on

Yesterday, Upwork and the Freelancers Union published the results of Freelancing in America: 2017, a comprehensive annual measure of the U.S. independent workforce. The report’s findings are wide-ranging, from the number of...more

The Health Care Executive Order and Its Effect on Employee Benefit Options

by Hodgson Russ LLP on

In a development with potentially far-reaching ramifications, on October 12, 2017, the President signed Executive Order No. 13813 expressing an executive policy of facilitating, “to the extent consistent with law”, the...more

Health Insurance for U.S. Employees - A New Option for an Old Problem

by Hodgson Russ LLP on

There is good news in the world of U.S. health insurance laws, at least for Canadian companies with fewer than 50 full-time U.S. employees. Effective this year, it is now possible to directly reimburse employees for the cost...more

Summary Judgment Win for Insurer in “Stable Value” Interest Rate Setting Case

by Carlton Fields on

In July, MetLife obtained a win in the Northern District of Illinois when the court granted summary judgment in its favor on a claim that it had breached the duty of good faith and fair dealing in setting interest rates for a...more

California Governor Approves Three More Employment Laws: “Ban The Box”; Expansion of Sexual Harassment Training; and Contractors...

The deadline for California Governor Jerry Brown to sign new bills into law officially expired October 15, 2017. In addition to signing five bills last week, the Governor signed three more employment-related bills into law...more

New California Law Mandates Small Businesses Provide Parental Leave

On October 12, 2017, Governor Jerry Brown signed the New Parent Leave Act into law, extending unpaid leave to bond with a new child within one year of the child’s birth, adoption, or foster care placement to employees of...more

White House Expands Exemptions to ACA Contraceptive Mandate

by Robinson & Cole LLP on

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued interim final rules on October 6, 2017, expanding exemptions to protect religious beliefs and moral convictions for certain entities and individuals whose health plans...more

Trump Administration Issues Executive Order Regarding Health Coverage and Discontinues Cost-Sharing Reductions Payments

by Locke Lord LLP on

On October 12, 2017, President Donald Trump signed an Executive Order “to reform the United States healthcare system to take the first steps to expand choices and alternatives to Obamacare plans and increase competition to...more

California Extends Parental Leave to Employees of Smaller Companies

by Payne & Fears on

Senate Bill 63 significantly expands job-protected leave for millions of Californians. The new law allows employees who work for a company with 20 or more employees within a 75-mile radius to take up to 12 weeks of leave to...more

Trump Administration Takes Aim at ACA With AHP Executive Order

Thursday, October 12th, on the heels of the recent and repeated failures to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (“ACA”), President Donald Trump signed an executive order nominally aimed at increasing competition in the...more

Trump Administration Pulls the Plug on CSR Payments

After months of veiled threats, President Trump formally announced that his Administration will cease funding Cost-Sharing Reduction (“CSR”) payments, a key component of the Affordable Care Act (“ACA”) intended to help...more

“Ceasing the CSR’s: Once a Threat, Now A Promise”

by LeClairRyan on

Late in the evening of October 12, 2017, word leaked that the Trump Administration planned to finally carry out its threat to stop the Cost-Sharing Reduction Payments (“CSRs”) under the Affordable Care Act (“ACA”). The...more

The DOL Fiduciary Rule: Charting a Course, Avoiding Collisions & Potential Litigation Q&A #2 - Q&As on Annuity Sales Practices,...

by Carlton Fields on

Last month, we wrote about potential litigation issues under the “revised temporary” DOL Rule involving the offer and sale of annuities in the IRA market. This paper continues that discussion. I emphasize to the reader that...more

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