Understanding Employee Benefits

To Be Determined? IRS Requests Comments Regarding Potential Determination Letter Program Expansion in 2019

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The IRS announced on April 5th that the agency is seeking input on whether (and how) the individually designed retirement plan determination letter program should be expanded for the 2019 calendar year. Notice 2018-24 requests stakeholder comment regarding additional situations in which sponsors of individually designed plans should have access... Read More

Topics: Fiduciary Guidance, Retirement Plans, Uncategorized

Send Out the Search Party: The DOL and Other Agencies Focus on Plan Efforts to Locate Missing Participants (Part 2)

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Part 1 of this series summarized a plan’s duty to search for missing participants and discussed the current and possible future sources of law that create that duty. This Part 2 compares each agency’s current minimum search requirements as well as the proposed search requirements in the Retirement Savings Lost... Read More

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

Send Out the Search Party: The DOL and Other Agencies Focus on Plan Efforts to Locate Missing Participants (Part 1)

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In the past year, the Department of Labor (DOL) has drastically increased audits of retirement plans with participants – or beneficiaries – who cannot be located in conjunction with the distribution of owed benefits. The DOL has directed its attention to Form 5500 filings disclosing high numbers of terminated vested... Read More

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

New Disability Claims Procedures May Apply to Qualified and Nonqualified Retirement Plans, Too

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As mentioned in our recent blog, the date for complying with the new disability claims procedures (April 2, 2018) is rapidly approaching.  In addition to making sure disability plans comply with the new rules, employers should also be reviewing other ERISA plans, such as qualified retirement plans and nonqualified deferred... Read More

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

Thanks for Noticing: Disability Claims Procedure Regulations Change Notice Requirement Next Month, Impose Strict Compliance Standard

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29 C.F.R. §2560.503-1 The DOL’s revised ERISA disability claims procedures regulations will be taking effect early next month, and plan sponsors should take a hard look at plan processes over the next few weeks to ensure compliance. The new requirements apply to disability benefit claims filed after April 1, 2018,... Read More

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

IRS Annual Limits on Qualified Plans for 2018

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On October 19, 2017, the Internal Revenue Service released the 2018 cost-of-living adjustments affecting dollar limits on benefits and contributions for qualified retirement plans. The Notice providing the cost-of-living adjustments is available here.  The Service also announced various other inflation adjustments in a new revenue procedure (including an adjustment to... Read More

Topics: Health Plan, Retirement Plans, Welfare Plans

Tibble and Class Action Plaintiffs Win Round Two versus Edison International and Its 401(k) Investment Committees

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In past articles in this Blog I reported on decisions of the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals and ultimately the U.S. Supreme Court dealing with a class action for breach of fiduciary duty for selecting retail mutual funds in 1999 for which lower costs institutional funds were available. http://benefitsnotes.com/2013/04/ninth-circuit-decides-selection-of-retail-mutual-funds-was-a-breach-of-fiduciary-duty/ ;... Read More

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

No Additional Delay on Effective Date of New Fiduciary Standards – DOL

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This week, new U.S. Department of Labor Secretary Acosta announced that the final fiduciary regulations would go into effect on June 9, 2017. The Department also issued two pieces of guidance with regard to the regulations also referred to as the “Conflicted Advice Rules”.  The guidance consists of a set... Read More

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