Employee Benefits Blog

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On November 6, 2018 the European Court of Justice (ECJ) passed judgment on two German cases (Max-Planck-Gesellschaft zur Förderung der Wissenschaften eV v Shimizu [C-684/16] and Kreuziger v Land Berlin [C-619/16]) concerning untaken paid annual leave entitlement. The ECJ ruled that accrued annual leave entitlements cannot be automatically forfeited if the worker does not place a request for holiday, and also applies to compensation claims at the termination of employment. These entitlements only cease if…
Sponsors and fiduciaries of health and welfare plans should be aware of a recently filed class-action lawsuit against alleged fiduciaries of a health plan. It challenges health-plan fiduciary oversight and reasonableness of fees similar to actions against fiduciaries of defined-contribution retirement plans. The action highlights the importance of establishing and documenting prudent fiduciary processes for making decisions on behalf of health and welfare plans. Access full article.
Given the rise of the #MeToo movement, companies are having to deal with many issues when drafting employee agreement contracts. In a presentation, Evan Belosa discussed these issues, including triggering events, nondisclosure agreements and restrictive covenant changes. He also addressed latest trends in state and local law affecting hiring and management of the workforce. View the full presentation.
Join us Friday, December 7 for our monthly Fridays With Benefits webinar. New proposed rules make the HRA an interesting option for employers beginning in 2020. Join McDermott lawyers for an interactive discussion regarding the “Integrated HRA” the “Excepted Benefit HRA” and the medical plan design opportunities they present. Join our lively 45-minute discussion while we tackle the following items: Can we really get out of the medical coverage game? How does the Integrated HRA…
Yesterday, the IRS released Notice 2018-94. This notice extends the due date for furnishing to individuals the 2018 Form 1095-B, Health Coverage, and the 2018 Form 1095-C, Employer-Provided Health Insurance Offer and Coverage from January 31, 2019 to March 4, 2019. Note that the 1095-C reporting to the IRS has not been extended. The deadline for filing to the IRS is February 28, 2019 (if not filing electronically) or April 1, 2019, if filing electronically. This…
The Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) has long been a source of complex and often-expensive litigation for employers. However, as the number of actions brought by employees under ERISA have surged, employer-defendants have often relied on the so-called top-hat exemption to dismiss certain claims involving executives. Now, several federal courts of appeals have addressed the disputed contention that the presence of employee bargaining power is required for a plan to fall under…
The IRS recently issued proposed amendments to regulations concerning 401(k) plan hardship distributions. The proposed regulations address changes to hardship distribution rules from the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018 and other legislation. Though the regulations are only proposed, 401(k) plan sponsors should promptly consider these changes because decisions should be made on applying certain optional changes, which generally can be effective for plan years beginning after December 31, 2018. Access the full article.
Any employer who has six or more employees in Massachusetts in any calendar month after November 2017 is required to complete a Health Insurance Responsibility Disclosure (HIRD) form by November 30, 2018. The HIRD form is used by MassHealth to collect information about employer-sponsored insurance offerings. The Massachusetts Department of Revenue recently published a set of FAQs stating that the HIRD form: Is filed by an employer through the employer’s MassTaxConnect web portal (the employer…
Yesterday, November 15, 2018, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) increased the annual maximum salary reduction limit for contributions to a health flexible spending account to $2,700. The 2019 contribution limit was published in Rev. Proc. 2018-57. The 2018 contribution limit was $2,650, resulting in an increase of $50 for 2019. An employer may use the increased limit for both health flexible spending accounts and limited purposed health flexible spending accounts that it maintains for…
Todd Solomon and Brian Tiemann presented on alternative investments for pension plans during the Association for Financial Professionals (AFP) Conference in Chicago. They discussed various rules benefit plan investors should consider, including the “look-through” rule and the “significant” investment rule. They also addressed common hedge fund structural and operational issues, and problems if a fund holds ERISA plan assets. View the full presentation.