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Senior Retirement Plan Administrator

TPS Group
(Remote / Buffalo NY)

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Enrolled Actuary

Loren D. Stark Company (LDSCO)
(Remote / Houston TX)

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DB/DC Administrator

Primark Benefits
(Remote / Burlingame CA)

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Implementation Specialist

Ubiquity Retirement + Savings
(Remote)

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Defined Benefits Combo Cash Balance Consultant

Loren D. Stark Company (LDSCO)
(Remote / Houston TX)

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DC Plan Administrator

Heritage Pension Advisors, Inc.
(Remote / Commack NY)

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Defined Contributions Consultant

Loren D. Stark Company (LDSCO)
(Remote / Houston TX)

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ERISA Attorney

Smith & Downey
(Towson MD)

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National Healthcare Director

Nyhart, part of FuturePlan by Ascensus
(Remote / Indianapolis IN / AL / AR / CT / DC / DE / FL / GA / IA / IL / KS / KY / LA / MA / MD / ME / MI / MN / MO / MS / NC / ND / NE / NH / NJ / NY / OH / OK / PA / RI / SC / SD / TN / TX / VA / VT / WI / WV)

Nyhart, part of FuturePlan by Ascensus logo

Saver Success Specialist

Ubiquity Retirement + Savings
(Remote)

Ubiquity Retirement + Savings logo

Defined Contribution Plan Administrator

PPS Pension Services
(Remote / Williamsville NY)

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Customer Experience Specialist

AimPoint Pension
(Remote)

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Client Service Manager

July Business Services
(Remote / Woodway TX)

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VP Sales Consultant (Retirement)

FuturePlan, by Ascensus
(Remote / FL)

FuturePlan, by Ascensus logo

Client Success Specialist

Ubiquity Retirement + Savings
(Remote)

Ubiquity Retirement + Savings logo

Relationship Manager

Compass Retirement Consulting Group, Inc.
(Remote / MA / ME / NH)

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Retirement Plan Consultant

Cetera Retirement Plan Specialists
(Remote)

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DOL Continues Emphasis on Enforcement in 2021
Groom Law Group Link to more items from this source
Dec. 2, 2021

"[T]he lion's share of the amount recovered in enforcement actions was from EBSA's Terminated Vested Participant Project (TVPP), which encompasses EBSA's missing participant initiative. EBSA reported that the TVPP resulted in a recovery of over $1.5 billion."

Tags: Lost/Missing Participants  •  Retirement Plan Administration

Understanding the Evolving Business Models and Revenue of Pharmacy Benefit Managers (PDF)
PBM Accountability Project Link to more items from this source
Dec. 2, 2021

28 pages. "When considering future prescription drug policy options, it is vital to consider the implications of PBM incentive structures for patients and other stakeholders within the market: [1] PBMs benefit directly from prescription medicine list price growth, leading to misaligned incentives in the system.... [2] Excess complexity and information asymmetry in the market prevent payers and patients from properly evaluating PBM decisions or drug costs.... [3] Lack of meaningful PBM industry standards, limited transparency, and lack of regulatory oversight enable PBM revenue growth."

Tags: Health Plan Design  •  Prescription Drug Costs

Text of PBGC Final Regs: Allocation of Assets in Single-Employer Plans; Valuation of Benefits and Assets; Expected Retirement Age
Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation [PBGC] Link to more items from this source
[Official Guidance]
Dec. 2, 2021

"This rule amends the [PBGC's] regulation on Allocation of Assets in Single-Employer Plans by substituting a new table for determining expected retirement ages for participants in pension plans undergoing distress or involuntary termination with valuation dates falling in 2022. This table is needed to compute the value of early retirement benefits and, thus, the total value of benefits under a plan."

Tags: Funding of DB Plans  •  Multiemployer Plans

Infrastructure Law Kicks Pension Funding Cans Down Newly Paved Roads
Principal Financial Group Link to more items from this source
[Guidance Overview]
Dec. 2, 2021

"ARPA allowed use of a 25-year average corporate bond rate multiplied by 95% through 2025.... Then, the 95% multiplier was to drop 5% annually until ultimately reaching 70% in 2030.... IIJA punts the ARPA schedule an additional half-decade down the asphalt. The 95% multiplier is now in effect through 2030, with the ultimate 70% multiplier not scheduled to arrive until 2035."

Tags: Funding of DB Plans  •  Multiemployer Plans

Proposed Regs Extend ACA Individual Statement Due Dates
Mercer Link to more items from this source
[Guidance Overview]
Dec. 2, 2021

"Five states ... and Washington, DC, have implemented or enacted individual health coverage mandates. Reporting entities with health plan participants living in these jurisdictions may need to provide Form 1095-B or an alternative form to responsible individuals, despite the federal relief."

Tags: Health Plan Administration

Second Circuit: Union Trustees Not Acting as Fiduciaries When They Passed Invalid Plan Amendments
Roberts Disability Law Link to more items from this source
Dec. 2, 2021

"Looking to the terms of the Trust Agreements, the Second Circuit agreed with the district court that the Union Trustees failed to comply with those Agreements.... However, the Second Circuit disagreed with the district court that the Union Trustees were acting in a fiduciary capacity when they passed the amendments because passing procedurally invalid amendments was not a fiduciary function within the meaning of ERISA." [Massaro v. Palladino, No. 20-1807 (2d Cir. Nov. 30, 2021)]

Tags: Fiduciary Duties  •  Multiemployer Plans

Study Suggests Substantial Retirement Risks Remain
American Retirement Association [ARA] Link to more items from this source
Dec. 2, 2021

"[W]hile most surveyed workers report that they are saving for retirement, fewer than one in four (24%) are very confident that they will be able to fully retire with a comfortable lifestyle. Still, despite the pessimistic figure, the survey also finds that 49% of workers say they are 'somewhat confident,' resulting in nearly three in four workers (73%) saying they are confident they will be able to fully retire with a comfortable lifestyle."

Tags: 401(k) Plans  •  Retirement Plan Design

Good Faith Compliance Standard for ACA Reporting by Large Employers Is Ending
MZQ Consulting, LLC Link to more items from this source
[Guidance Overview]
Dec. 2, 2021

"Up until this reporting year, employers just had to 'try their best' when it came to filling out reporting forms.... Now ... employers ... not only need to file their Forms 1094/1095-C with the IRS, but they also need to get them right.... [E]mployers may be penalized for inaccurate/incomplete information returns, which comes with a fine of up to $280 per form for 2021."

Tags: Health Plan Administration

Illinois DOL Releases Guidance for Consumer Coverage Disclosure Act
EPIC Link to more items from this source
[Guidance Overview]
Dec. 2, 2021

"A new disclosure requirement ... requires employers sponsoring health plans in Illinois to disclose a written list of offered benefits compared to the list of essential health benefits offered by the State of Illinois. According to the rule, because the requirement is on employers, not insurance plans, the disclosure is not preempted by [ERISA]. The [Illinois DOL] provided a sample chart of essential health benefits employers can use to fulfill the disclosure requirement. There are penalties for failure to comply."

Tags: Health Plan Administration  •  Local Regulation

FAS87 ASC715 Discount Rates and Moody's Rates, November 30, 2021
BenefitsLink Message Boards Link to more items from this source
Dec. 2, 2021

An unofficial monthly report of the Moody's Daily Long-term Corporate Bond Yield Averages and Moody's Daily Treasury Yield Averages (used as benchmarks by some corporate pension plans).

Tags: Funding of DB Plans

Hospitals' Infrequently Published Prices Suggest Substantial Variance in Radiology Service Charges to Commercial Payers
FierceHealthcare Link to more items from this source
Dec. 2, 2021

"Despite the threat of daily fines, hospitals have so far been slow to publish their prices online in accordance with a new federal regulation.... [New data suggest] roughly two-thirds of U.S. hospitals have not published commercial negotiated prices for at least one of the 13 radiology services designated as a common shoppable service by [CMS].... Further, the hospitals that did share their radiology service commercial negotiated prices appear to be all over the map, often setting price tags that varied by hundreds or thousands of dollars for certain imaging services."

Tags: Health Plan Costs

Even Before COVID-19, Many Adults Delayed or Did Not Get Needed Prescription Drugs Because of Costs
Urban Institute Link to more items from this source
Dec. 2, 2021

"Nearly 13 million adults delayed or did not get needed prescription drugs in [2018 and 2019] because of the cost ... Nearly all Medicare beneficiaries and more than 8 in 10 privately insured adults with unmet needs have been diagnosed with a chronic condition ... More than one-quarter of adults with Medicare (25.4 percent) and 5.3 percent of privately insured adults spent more than 1 percent of their family incomes on their individual out-of-pocket prescription drug costs."

Tags: Medicare  •  Prescription Drug Costs

Non-Profits to Increase Focus on Retirement Income and Financial Wellness in 2022
Principal Financial Group Link to more items from this source
Dec. 2, 2021

"[T]op priorities for plan sponsors had shifted in a few key areas since surveying done before the pandemic. This included an increase in focus on retirement income solutions in plan design, as well as a 45% jump in prioritizing financial wellness tools -- just over 12.3% of surveyed organizations did so this year, versus 8.5% in the prior survey."

Tags: Retirement Plan Design

A Group of Midwestern Retirees Are Trying to Stop Use of Hedge Funds and Private Equity in Governmental Plans
Jacobin Link to more items from this source
Dec. 2, 2021

"Due to an active group of retirees and the assistance of a former Ohio attorney general, both the Ohio state auditor and the Ohio Department of Securities have launched inquiries into the Ohio State Teachers Retirement System (STRS Ohio), a $100 billion pension that has launched billions of dollars of investments into the riskier corners of the market, namely private equity and hedge funds."

Tags: Retirement Plan Investments  •  State and Local Government Plans

Fifth Circuit: Employee's Retirement Constitutes 'Qualifying Event' and Triggers Employer's COBRA Notice Obligation
Roberts Disability Law Link to more items from this source
Dec. 2, 2021

"The district court erred when it determined that there was no qualifying event because the retirement was not contemporaneous with the loss of coverage. 'A loss of coverage does not need to be contemporaneous to the qualifying event.' The loss of coverage need only occur within 18 months of a qualifying event." [Randolph v. E. Baton Rouge Parish School Sys., No. 21-30022 (5th Cir. Nov. 30, 2021)]

Tags: COBRA

CMS Makes Templates Available to Help with Aspects of the New Surprise Billing Regs
Healthcare Financial Management Association [HFMA]; free registration required Link to more items from this source
Dec. 2, 2021

"The resources ... include forms for: [1] Notifying self-pay and uninsured patients of their right to receive a good-faith estimate of expected charges; [2] Generating a good-faith estimate; [3] Tracking the data elements that are required in the good-faith estimate; [4] Tracking required documents for the provider-patient dispute resolution process, which can be used when charges exceed the good-faith estimate by at least $400."

Tags: Health Plan Administration  •  Health Plan Costs

How 'Microcare' Can Promote Employee Mental Health and the Employer's Bottom Line
Forbes; subscription may be required Link to more items from this source
Dec. 1, 2021

"According to a 2021 Gallup poll, 48% of the American workforce is searching for a new job opportunity, and many are looking for signs that companies care about them. Research shows that various forms of Microcare create a win-win for both employees ... and employers ... There are five types of Microcare that yield big payoffs in a short amount of time: Microsteps, Microbreaks, Microchillers, Microweeks and Microcations."

Tags: Health Plan Design

How Governmental 457(b) Plans Differ from Top Hat 457(b) Plans
Slott Report Link to more items from this source
[Guidance Overview]
Dec. 1, 2021

"Governmental 457(b) plan funds must be held apart from the employer's assets in a trust fund. By contrast, top hat plan funds must remain property of the employer. So, even though top hat assets can't be reached by the employee's creditors, they can be reached by the employer's creditors at all times. This makes top hat plans riskier than governmental plans. That level of risk is why Congress limited eligibility to highly-paid employees who can better bear that risk."

Tags: 457 Plans  •  State and Local Government Plans

District Court Issues Nationwide Stay of CMS Vaccination Mandate for Healthcare Workers
Holland & Hart LLP Link to more items from this source
Dec. 1, 2021

"[A] federal district court in Louisiana issued a preliminary injunction staying the CMS vaccine mandate nationwide (except for the 10 states subject to [the Nov. 29] injunction in Missouri).... CMS is likely to appeal. In the meantime, facilities otherwise covered by the CMS rule may suspend their efforts to implement and enforce the CMS rule." [Louisiana v. Becerra, No. 21-3970 (W.D. La. Nov. 30, 2021)]

Tags: Coronavirus (COVID-19)  •  Health Plan Design

District Court Enjoins Federal Contractor COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate in Kentucky, Ohio, and Tennessee
Seyfarth Shaw LLP Link to more items from this source
Dec. 1, 2021

"Despite the breadth of the authority delegated by Congress to the president in procurement matters under the Federal Property and Administrative Services Act (FPASA), the Judge concluded that the FPASA has never 'been used to promulgate such a wide and sweeping public health regulation as mandatory vaccination for all federal contractors and subcontractors' and cautioned that 'the President's authority is not absolute.' The Judge indicated that regarding the contractor vaccine mandate, the government cannot demonstrate a 'close enough nexus to economy and efficiency in federal procurement.' " [Commonwealth of Kentucky v. Biden, No. 21-0055 (E.D. Ky. Nov. 30, 2021)]

Tags: Coronavirus (COVID-19)  •  Health Plan Design

HHS Adjusts 2021 HIPAA, ACA and MSP Monetary Penalties
Mercer Link to more items from this source
[Guidance Overview]
Dec. 1, 2021

"Inflation adjustments released by [HHS] apply to penalties assessed on or after Nov. 15, 2021, for violations occurring on or after Nov. 2, 2015. This most recent inflation increase is 1.182%. This article highlights the changes of interest to employers sponsoring group health plans."

Tags: HIPAA  •  Health Plan Administration

Eighth Circuit: Ordinary Summary Judgment Procedures Apply to Review of ERISA Benefit Claims
Roberts Disability Law Link to more items from this source
Dec. 1, 2021

"The Eighth Circuit ... held that ordinary summary-judgment procedures under FRCP 56 apply in ERISA benefit cases where the administrator lacked discretionary authority. Parties in an ERISA case that want the district court to exercise its factfinding function under FRCP 39(b) and 52(a)(1) to decide the case on the administrative record should request that the district court do that." [Avenoso v. Reliance Standard Life Ins. Co., No. 21-1772 (8th Cir. Nov. 30, 2021)]

Tags: Health Plan Administration  •  Retirement Plan Administration

Best Interest Standard of Care for Advisors, Part 75: Mitigation of Conflicts
FredReish.com Link to more items from this source
[Guidance Overview]
Dec. 1, 2021

"There is a good chance that the DOL (and the SEC) will, in the next year or two, focus their examinations on the mitigation practices of broker-dealers, investment advisers and other financial institutions. And their views about mitigation may differ from the private sector's -- in the sense that the regulators may expect more than is anticipated."

Tags: Fiduciary Duties  •  Retirement Plan Investments

Editor's Pick Employer Checklist for New Health Plan Price Transparency Rules and CAA
Foley & Lardner LLP Link to more items from this source
[Guidance Overview]
Dec. 1, 2021

"[S]everal provisions [of the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 and related regulations, and the Transparency in Coverage Rule] that will have a large impact on self-funded health plans are effective in January 2022, including requirements related to surprise billing. [This checklist is designed] to help employers with self-funded health plans be aware of the obligations imposed by these laws and the steps they may need to take to comply[.]"

Tags: Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021   •  Health Plan Administration

DOL Temporarily Halts Enforcement of Compliance with PTE and ERISA Fiduciary Obligations for Rollover Advice
Faegre Drinker Link to more items from this source
Dec. 1, 2021

"In [FAB 2021-02], the DOL announced that ... it will not enforce the requirement that retirement investors be provided with the specific reasons why a rollover recommendation is in their best interest until July 1, 2022.... The DOL will begin enforcing all of PTE's other requirements on February 1, 2022."

Tags: Fiduciary Duties  •  Retirement Plan Investments  •  Rollovers

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