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January 29, 2013          Get Health & Welfare News  |  Advertise  |  Unsubscribe
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Employee Benefits Jobs

Qualified Plan Administrator
for Trust Company of America in CO

Account Manager Employee Benefits
for Employee Insurance / Financial Firm in CT

Defined Benefit Administrator
for A Pension Store, LLC - Metro Atlanta Area in ANY STATE, GA

Benefits Plan Manager/Account Executive (Taft-Hartley TPA)
for BeneSys Administrators in CA

Benefits Administrator
for TPA Firm in

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Webcasts and Conferences

Overview of Types of Plans, IRA/DOL Guidance
Nationwide on April 11, 2013 presented by McKay Hochman Co., Inc.

401(k) Advisor Symposium - Tampa, FL
in Florida on February 21, 2013 presented by 401(k) Rekon

401(k) Advisor Symposium - Newton, MA
in Massachusetts on February 27, 2013 presented by 401(k) Rekon

It's Not Your Grandfather's Plan Anymore: Health Care Reform Exemptions
Nationwide on January 30, 2013 presented by Davidson Marketing Group -- FutureOffice Network

Governmental Pension Reporting The New Standards Webcast
Nationwide on February 11, 2013 presented by Accounting Continuing Professional Education Network (ACPEN)

The Fiscal Cliff: Crisis Averted? Webcast
Nationwide on February 7, 2013 presented by Multnomah Group

"401(k) Testing Techniques" Web Seminar
Nationwide on February 19, 2013 presented by SunGard Relius

Qualified Plan Essentials Plus Series
Nationwide on April 11, 2013 presented by McKay Hochman Co., Inc.

Designated Roth Accounts and Roth Conversions
Nationwide on April 18, 2013 presented by McKay Hochman Co., Inc.

Participant Loans
Nationwide on June 20, 2013 presented by McKay Hochman Co., Inc.

View All Webcasts and Conferences


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[Guidance Overview]

IRS Updates Correction Program for Retirement Plans
"The IRS has slightly expanded the ability for tax-exempt plan sponsors to correct Code Section 457(b) plan failures. RP 2013-12 provides that the IRS may consider a voluntary submission where, for example, the plan was erroneously established to benefit the entity's non-highly compensated employees and the plan has been operated in a manner that is similar to a qualified plan." (McGuire Woods LLP)


[Advert.]

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Join us in exciting Las Vegas at Caesar's Palace and get the latest government and regulatory updates that affect you and find out why 1,300+ retirement plan professionals return every year.


[Guidance Overview]

Procedures Updated for Technical Advice by Employee Plans or Exempt Organizations Technical Offices
"In the subsection concerning areas of mandatory technical advice, the IRS has provided a clarification regarding when a TAM is required by the EO Examination office. In the section that concerns when TAMs should be requested, the IRS has added a subsection relating to coordination with the Department of Labor. Specifically, if a case being submitted by EP Examinations involves a prohibited transaction that has not been corrected or a violation of the exclusive benefit rule, EP Examinations must coordinate its examination case with the Department of Labor before submitting the request for technical advice to EP Technical." (Wolters Kluwer Law & Business)

2012 Reporting of 2010 Roth Rollovers and Conversions
An informational page for taxpayers, describing the various rules that depend upon whether distributions were received in 2010, 2011 or 2012. "In 2010, did you: [1] convert (transfer) amounts from a non-Roth IRA to a Roth IRA, [2] roll over eligible distributions from a retirement plan (other than an IRA-based plan) to a Roth IRA, or [3] do an in-plan Roth rollover (after September 27, 2010)? If yes, you were required to report half of the taxable amount of your 2010 Roth rollovers and conversions on your 2011 tax return and now must report the remaining half on your 2012 return, unless ..." (Internal Revenue Service)

Qualified Retirement Plans: Key Dates and Deadlines for 2013
The linked article includes three 2013 pension plan calendars with key administrative dates and deadlines ... [1] calendar-year multiemployer defined benefit plans; [2] calendar-year single-employer defined benefit plans; and [3] calendar-year defined contribution retirement plans. (Retirement Town Hall)

New York State Comptroller Criticizes Cuomo's Plan to Cut Pension Costs
"Government pension costs have soared in recent years, putting enormous pressure on municipalities across the country. [Governor] Cuomo has proposed allowing municipal governments to defer a portion of their pension costs by choosing a fixed contribution rate below the current one.... Mr. DiNapoli's criticism, however, could doom the plan, announced a week ago. The state comptroller is the sole trustee of the state's $150 billion pension fund, and his support is needed for the plan to proceed." (The New York Times; free registration required)

Bill Would Exempt Thousands of California Public Employees from Pension Overhaul
"Three months after lawmakers enacted public pension rollbacks, a new measure has surfaced that would exempt thousands of public transportation workers from the law. The bill's author and its union sponsors say it's a necessary, narrow and reasonable tweak to the pension statute that will keep billions of federal dollars flowing into California. But one of the state's leading pension reform advocates said it's another example of organized labor flexing its muscle to undo the retirement changes." (Sacramento Bee)

PBGC Sues Renco Group Over RG Steel's Unfunded Pension
"The [PBGC has] sued the Renco Group Inc. over $97.2 million in unfunded pension liabilities at its bankrupt RG Steel LLC unit, once the fourth-biggest U.S. flat-rolled steelmaker. The agency claims Renco deceived it in January 2012 when it was ready to terminate the pension plans. Renco executed a financing transaction that month with an affiliate of Cerberus Capital Management LP in an effort to avoid the financial obligations of the former steel-maker's pension shortfall [according to the PBGC suit]." (Bloomberg)

CalPERS Portfolio Continues to Miss the Cut
"[D]espite [its] complexity, it doesn't appear that the CALPERS investment portfolio has exceeded the return on a simple set of low cost index funds.... The 2012 return for CALPERS of +13% looks good on the surface, until we realize that a simple portfolio that is 80% in stock indexes and 20% in bond indexes earned +14.1%." (Servo Wealth Management)

Eight Hot Topics for Retirement Plan Sponsors
"[E]ight trends that plan sponsors, committee members and participants can expect in 2013 and beyond[:] 1. Focus on behavioral finance and participant plan usage.... 2. Consolidation of investment menus.... 3. Additional asset classes for greater diversification.... 4. Continued fee scrutiny.... 5. Challenges to the fixed annuity and stable value fund marketplace.... 6. Continued growth of qualified default investment alternative (QDIA) appropriate funds.... 7. Participant desire for guaranteed income.... 8. Sustained regulatory scrutiny and legislation." (Cammack LaRhette Consulting)

European Governments to Take 'Aggressive Action' to Tackle Retirement Savings Gap
"According to a [recent] survey ... nearly seven out of 10 pension [plans] (69 per cent) across Europe expect governments will take 'aggressive action' to close the retirement savings gap in the next five years. Such measures would include compulsory (or opt-out rather than opt-in) saving mechanisms such as the UK's auto-enrollment and new financial incentives to save. Pension [plans] are feeling optimistic with nearly eight out of 10 (77 per cent) believing that contribution rates will increase over the next five years." (State Street Corporation)

Family Pension Responses to Liquidity Change and Perceived Returns (PDF)
"Besides the impact of the overall economic climate, individual, family level events and cash flow changes are expected to play a role in the decision to add to or withdraw from a DC pension plan. Preliminary studies suggest that the savings response by households to recent economic uncertainties during 2009-2011, was greater overall savings and an increase in liquid asset holding, a result consistent with classic predictions of a response to economic turmoil. Overall, pension fund inflows have not been a part of the increase in private saving in the Great Recession." (University of Michigan Retirement Research Center)

[Opinion]

Morningstar Star Ratings: Do They or Don't They Predict?
"Most of the advisers ... see Morningstar's ratings as historical evaluations, not predictive devices. Morningstar, the proverbial hairdresser in this sense, appears to delight in leaving the answer rather ambiguous. It wasn't always this way.... But now Morningstar's tune might be changing." (Fiduciary News)

[Opinion]

Retirement Reform a Likely Target for Obama's Second Term
"[I]n an era where 'the power of inertia' helps guide an otherwise shell-shocked and financially confused participant public, the most likely change will probably be an Obama-led move to mandatory, automatic IRAs for most American workers. Under that slightly revolutionary plan, companies with at least 10 employees would be required to establish a deferral rate of 3 percent into IRA plans (a post-tax Roth IRA would be the default but pre-tax traditional IRAs would be available as a second choice). Workers as young as 18 would be included in the plan." (BenefitsPro)

[Opinion]

Text of ASPPA Request for DOL and IRS Guidance on Form 5500 and 8955-SSA Filing Requirements for Multiple Employer Plans
"ASPPA recommends that the [DOL] and IRS jointly provide guidance that clarifies and resolves the apparent inconsistent reporting obligations under Title I of ERISA and the IRC for plan sponsors participating in MEPs.... [It] is critical that guidance be issued as soon as possible to resolve the apparent conflict. Until clarified, transitional relief should be provided that would deem a plan sponsor participating in a MEP to have satisfied its reporting obligations under Title I of ERISA and the IRC if a Form 5500 has been filed for the MEP as a single plan." (American Society of Pension Professionals & Actuaries (ASPPA))

Benefits in General; Executive Compensation

Employees Willing to Pay for a Range of Voluntary Benefits
"With benefit costs outpacing inflation in many countries and employers unable to pass along these costs to employees, voluntary benefits represent an attractive option for employers who wish to reign in expenses while maintaining broad benefit offerings. Employees pay for these benefits, but often at discounted prices and with less underwriting compared to the same products in the open market. Mercer's Making Smart Benefit Choices Survey, conducted in 10 markets, shows which benefits employees would be most willing to pay for themselves." (Mercer)

Health TPA Can Be Sued for ERISA Benefits Although Not Named as Plan Administrator
"This [Fifth Circuit] decision should strike a cautionary note for TPAs and plan sponsors, reminding all that function prevails over contractual language, and that plan interpretation must be consistent with plan language. Even if this TPA does not ultimately have to pay the participants' benefits, it is out its litigation expenses and the award of attorney's fees (and may have contractual obligations to the plan sponsors as well)." [LifeCare Mgmt. Servs. LLC v. Insurance Mgmt. Adm'rs Inc., 2013 WL 57035 (5th Cir. 2013)] (Thomson Reuters / EBIA)

Press Releases

PBGC Sues the Renco Group Inc. for $97 Million in Pension Liabilities
Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC)

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