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 Executive Compensation Posts

More on Discounted Stock Options Under Section 409A

By Angela Bohmann | March 12, 2013

Deferred Compensation and 409A, Executive Compensation My colleague Jeff Cairns blogged about a recent court case confirming the IRS’s position that discounted stock options can be considered noncompliant nonqualified deferred compensation arrangements under Section 409A of the Internal Revenue Code. Unless structured to be exercised only on a fixed date or an allowable...

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Section 409A Tax Assessed on Discounted Stock Options – Taxpayer Sues for Refund in Federal Court of Claims

By Jeffrey Cairns | March 7, 2013

Deferred Compensation and 409A, ERISA and Other Benefits Litigation, Executive Compensation, Payroll Code Section 409A which was effective in January 1, 2005, provides strict rules that must be applied to most deferred compensation arrangements accruing benefits after the effective date. Failure to comply with the Code and the applicable Treasury Regulations can result in a 20% surtax plus interest on the amounts...

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New York Taxes a Portion of Stock Option Gain of Nonresident Retiree

By Angela Bohmann | December 10, 2012

Deferred Compensation and 409A, Executive Compensation Like a number of states, New York requires nonresidents to pay income taxes on wages earned in the state. Those rules extend to an allocable portion of deferred compensation and gain from the exercise of stock options earned while employed in the state. The state’s ability to tax a nonresident is limited to this...

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Do I Have A Top Hat Plan?

By Angela Bohmann | November 21, 2012

Executive Compensation A standard part of an executive compensation package can be participation in a nonqualified deferred compensation plan. This is a plan not subject to tax code limitations on qualified retirement plans and not subject to many provisions of ERISA, including the requirement that plan assets be set aside in a trust,...

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NYSE AND NASDAQ PROPOSE RULES REGARDING INDEPENDENCE OF COMPENSATION COMMITTEES AND ADVISORS

By Jeffrey Cairns | October 16, 2012

Compensation Questions, Executive Compensation Our sister blog, Dodd-Frank.com, recently published summaries of the respective proposed rules for public companies issued by the New York Stock Exchange and the NASDAQ in entries on September 25 and September 26. You may access the summaries through the following links:...

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It is Always Good to Follow the Plan’s Claims Procedure in Denying a Claim

By Angela Bohmann | July 30, 2012

Compensation Questions, Deferred Compensation and 409A, ERISA and Other Benefits Litigation, Executive Compensation A recent Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals decision involved high ranking executives who participated in a company’s long-term incentive plan. Under the plan agreements, executives who did not continue employment for a three year performance period forfeited benefits under the plan unless they qualified for a...

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Not All Courts Agree With The Eighth Circuit

By Angela Bohmann | June 4, 2012

Deferred Compensation and 409A, ERISA and Other Benefits Litigation, Executive Compensation I blogged recently about an Eighth Circuit decision concluding that an agreement with a single employee cannot be an ERISA plan because a plan necessarily requires more than one participant. Other courts disagree. Recently the United States District Court for the District of Idaho in the case of Knoll v. Moreton...

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Top Hat Plan Benefits Can Be Garnished

Deferred Compensation and 409A, Executive Compensation, Payroll In a recent District Court decision, a court held that non-qualified deferred compensation benefits being paid  to a participant under a “top hat” plan could be garnished by the participant’s creditor. Employers who sponsor plans covered by ERISA know that creditors cannot garnish a participant’s benefits...

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Agreement With Single Employee is Not an ERISA Plan

By Angela Bohmann | May 15, 2012

Deferred Compensation and 409A, ERISA and Other Benefits Litigation, Executive Compensation If an arrangement is subject to ERISA, state law claims relating to that arrangement are preempted. In some situations, therefore, employers try to argue that a particular arrangement is subject to ERISA. In a recent decision involving a state law breach of contract claim, the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals...

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