Benefits Notes |

Employee benefits are an important part of every employees' total compensation package. The continuously evolving landscape in the areas of health care reform, retirement plan design, and executive compensation makes it difficult for employee benefits professionals to keep up with relevant developments. The employee benefits attorneys at Stinson Leonard Street provide human resources professionals, plan fiduciaries, actuaries, accountants, and others in the industry with practical and cost-effective assistance as they navigate through the complex laws, regulations and guidance that govern employee benefits plans. This blog highlights key developments in the employee benefits field and items of interest to our clients. Our Bloggers →

Latest Benefits Notes Posts

EEOC Issues New Wellness Guidance

By Angela Bohmann | May 26, 2016

Health Plan, Welfare Plans My colleagues in the Labor and Employment Group have published an Alert on the new wellness guidance from the EEOC. It is linked here.

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What You Say in Your SPD About Claims Processing Makes a Difference

By Angela Bohmann | April 25, 2016

ERISA and Other Benefits Litigation, Health Plan Employers who self fund their medical plans often have contracts with their third party administrators about claims processing. Some of those contracts provide that the claims processor has discretion to decide claims; others provide that the claims processor is simply acting in a ministerial fashion so that the...

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Bad COBRA Notices Can Cost You

By Angela Bohmann | April 12, 2016

ERISA and Other Benefits Litigation, Health Plan Sun Trust Bank was sued in a class action challenging its COBRA notice. The plaintiffs who brought the lawsuit claimed that the COBRA notice was materially deficient in that it failed to provide the name and address of the party responsible under the plan for COBRA administration and that it failed to provide an...

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Beware the Retroactive QDRO

By Angela Bohmann | April 5, 2016

ERISA and Other Benefits Litigation, Retirement Plans Employers know that they must honor qualified domestic relations orders (QDROs) that assign a portion of a retirement benefit to a participant's former spouse, known as an alternate payee, when the participant and alternate payee divorce. Those orders by law are not allowed to provide greater benefits than were...

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Time to Review Plan Subrogation Procedures, Part 2

By Angela Bohmann | March 25, 2016

ERISA and Other Benefits Litigation, Health Plan, Welfare Plans I blogged a few days ago about the U.S. Supreme Court decision making it harder for plans to recover from a third-party settlement fund for the amount the plan paid when a participant is injured by that third-party. A recent federal district court decision highlights the need to provide appropriate notice of the...

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Time to Review Plan Subrogation Procedures

By Angela Bohmann | March 23, 2016

ERISA and Other Benefits Litigation, Health Plan, Welfare Plans Most self-funded ERISA medical plans provide that participants who have been injured by other people (think car accidents) must reimburse the plan if the participant recovers from the other person for those injuries. In order to obtain that reimbursement, a plan document must contain appropriate...

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EEOC Loses Another Wellness Case, Part 2 – Beware the ACA Penalties

By Angela Bohmann | March 4, 2016

Health Care Reform, Health Plan In my last blog post, I discussed a recent loss by the EEOC in its efforts to limit the ability of employers to require employees to complete health risk assessments (HRAs) or biometric screenings in order to enroll in the employer's health plan. I said that I would discuss an Affordable Care Act (ACA) reason why...

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EEOC Loses Another Wellness Case, Part 1

By Angela Bohmann | March 2, 2016

Health Care Reform, Health Plan The EEOC has been bringing lawsuits against employers challenging wellness programs. A recent case involved a company that had previously provided a credit to employees enrolled in the health plan who participated in a health risk assessment (HRA) and biometric screenings. The company had eliminated the credit and...

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FICA Lawsuit Settles For Over $3 Million

By Angela Bohmann | February 11, 2016

Deferred Compensation and 409A, Payroll I have previously blogged (here and here) about a lawsuit brought by participants in a nonqualified deferred compensation plan where the employer failed to report and pay FICA (social security) taxes in the most tax advantageous way. The employer had tried to get the lawsuit dismissed on the grounds that the FICA tax...

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New Reportable Events Filing May Affect Borrowers with Defined Benefit Pension Plans

By Angela Bohmann | February 3, 2016

Retirement Plans This article is for employers who sponsor defined benefit plans that are subject to Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) coverage. Those employers pay premiums to the PBGC and also are required to report certain events to the PBGC. Some events must be reported in advance; others are reportable after the event...

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