2014 Articles

Eight common employee benefit plan failures discovered during mergers and acquisitions By William H. Mayer December 2014 In addition to identifying areas of concern, this article will address potential liabilities associated with the failures and provide a summary of corrective measures that may be available to alleviate the potential liabilities.
Employer reporting requirements finalized By Joy Sellstrom June 2014 A discussion of the Department of Treasury's published final rules addressing two reporting requirements under the Affordable Care Act.
Employer responsibilities under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act By Bernard G. Peter February 2014 There is significant work for employers to accomplish both to prepare for January 1, 2015, and to comply with the remaining provisions of the Act.
Extension and clarification of expatriate health plan exception under ACA By Janel Brynda June 2014 Global employers with mobile employees may be able to take advantage of the “expatriate health plan” exception to exclude certain employees for purposes of determining the “pay or play” penalty under the Affordable Care Act.
Federal case update By Michael Bartolic February 2014 Recent cases of interest to employee benefits practitioners.
Five proven tactics to minimize ERISA litigation risk By James Baker & Lisa Brogan June 2014 Companies can improve their employee benefit plan offerings and, at the same time, minimize ERISA litigation risk by making small changes to their employee benefit plan documents.
New IRS guidance sheds light on the impact of same-sex marriage decision on employee benefits By Alison Wright & Chris Guldberg February 2014 Following the United States Supreme Court decision in United States v. Windsor, the Internal Revenue Service has issued guidance on how that decision impacts the Internal Revenue Code.
New rules, continued non-compliance: Protecting business owners and plan participants in the changing 401k plan climate By Kurt Winiecki May 2014 A look at some of the common non-compliance issues related to 401k plans, including new fee disclosure rules that are often ignored.
Pension relief By Douglas A. Darch February 2014 Illinois state pension law is a complex web of built-in extra benefits that costs taxpayers billions. In Hooker v. Retirement Board, the Supreme Court limited eligibility for one of those extra benefits.
Pro bono legal opportunities By Bernard G. Peter May 2014 The author outlines various projects that need your help! 
SB1 Pension Reform By Lori Cowdrey Benso & John Lowder February 2014 A closer look at the changes.
Smith v. Aegon Companies Pension Plan: Enforceability of venue selection clauses By Nancy G. Ross & Samuel P. Myler December 2014 While some district courts, such as the Northern District of Illinois in Coleman v. Supervalu, Inc. Short Term Disability Program have agreed with plan participants that venue selection clauses are inconsistent with ERISA, the Sixth Circuit’s recent 2-1 decision in Smith v. Aegon Companies Pension Plan lends strong support for the prevailing view among the district courts that such clauses are enforceable.
A summary of the anti-cutback rule By Patrick M. Colgan February 2014 A brief overview of some of the components that have been included in a court’s analysis of the anti-cutback rule including examples of that analysis.
Time is not relative for ERISA statutes of limitation By James Baker & Lisa Brogan May 2014 On Dec. 16, 2013, the U.S. Supreme Court announced that an Employee Retirement Income Security Act plan’s own contractual time period for contesting plan benefit disputes is enforceable.
A warning to public sector employers: ERISA can apply to you By Benjamin E. Gehrt June 2014 Many HR professionals, elected officials, and even some attorneys share a common belief: ERISA does not apply to public sector employers. Unfortunately, they are wrong.