Understanding Employee Benefits

Annual Limits on Qualified Plans for 2020

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On November 6, 2019, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) released Notice 2019-59, which sets forth the 2020 cost-of-living adjustments affecting dollar limits on benefits and contributions for qualified retirement plans. The IRS also announced the health savings account (HSA) and high deductible health plan (HDHP) annual deductible and out-of-pocket expense... Read More

Topics: Cafeteria Plans, Health Plan, Retirement Plans

IRS Final Regulations Amend Hardship Distribution Rules for 401(k) and 403(b) Plans

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On September 23, 2019 the Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) issued final regulations amending the rules for hardship distributions from 401(k) and 403(b) plans (the “Final Regulations”). The Final Regulations modify the hardship requirements to reflect statutory changes and directives introduced by the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018, the Tax Cuts and... Read More

Topics: Errors & Omissions Liability, Retirement Plans

Department of Labor’s New Guidance Helps Employers of Uniformed Service Members Manage Pension Obligations

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The Department of Labor’s Veterans Employment and Training Services (“VETS”) issued a new fact sheet (“Fact Sheet”) to help employers better manage their pension obligations under the Uniform Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (“USERRA”). USERRA creates certain rights and protections for uniformed service members. For example, under USERRA, service... Read More

Topics: Compensation Questions, Retirement Plans

FINAL HRA REGULATIONS CREATE NEW HEALTH COVERAGE OPTIONS FOR EMPLOYERS AND EMPLOYEES

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On June 13, 2019 the Department of Health and Human Services, Department of Labor and Department of the Treasury released final regulations that create new healthcare coverage options for employers and employees. https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2019/06/20/2019-12571/health-reimbursement-arrangements-and-other-account-based-group-health-plans The new coverage options come in the form of two new types of health reimbursement arrangements (“HRAs”),... Read More

Topics: Health Care Reform, Health Plan, Welfare Plans

IRS Expands Determination Letter Program to Hybrid and Merged Plans

The IRS has issued guidance (Rev. Proc. 2019-20) expanding the determination letter program for certain individually designed plans.  The IRS had previously announced in 2017 that the determination letter program for individually designed plans would be limited to initial plan qualification and qualification on plan termination.  Since that time, the... Read More

Topics: Retirement Plans

Class Action Filed Against Fidelity for Alleged “Secret Kickback Payments”

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On February 21, 2019 attorneys for Andrew Wong, a participant in the T-Mobile USA Inc. 401(k) Retirement Savings Plan & Trust, filed a class action complaint in the U.S. District Court of Massachusetts against FMR LLC, Fidelity Management Research Company, Fidelity Management Trust Company and several other affiliates. The basis... Read More

Topics: ERISA and Other Benefits Litigation, Fiduciary Guidance, Retirement Plans

Are Your Business Associate Agreements In Place?

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HHS Announces Significant Settlement Agreements for Noncompliance On December 4 and December 11, 2018, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) Office for Civil Rights (OCR) issued press releases announcing two settlements with health care providers for violation of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act’s (HIPAA) privacy... Read More

Topics: Health Plan, Welfare Plans