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My Benefits, LLC
(Daphne AL / Greenville SC)

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Editor's Pick Use of HSAs Among Adults Enrolled in High-Deductible Health Plans
JAMA Network Link to more items from this source
July 27, 2020

"In this national survey of 1637 respondents, approximately 1 in 3 adults enrolled in a high-deductible health plan did not have a health savings account. Among those with a health savings account, most had not contributed money into it in the last year ... These findings suggest that ... targeted interventions could enhance uptake of and contributions to health savings accounts."

Tags: HSAs  •  Health Plan Design

Editor's Pick Current Summary of States Permitting Remote Notarization
Akerman Link to more items from this source
July 24, 2020

Updated Jul. 23, 2020. "States are rapidly adapting to social distancing in their approaches to remote notarization. The [chart in this article] tracks the steps, special conditions, and considerations on a state-by-state basis. The chart lists states with temporary remote notarization procedures. It does not list states with pre-existing remote notary statutes and states requiring use of a third-party remote online notarization service."

Tags: Coronavirus (COVID-19)  •  Retirement Plan Administration

Editor's Pick American Benefits Council Letter to IRS: Urgent Need for Delay in Due Date for DB Plan Form 5500
American Benefits Council Link to more items from this source
[Opinion]
July 23, 2020

"[We] urge you to issue guidance as soon as possible delaying the due date for any defined benefit plan Form 5500 that would otherwise be due during the remainder of this year to no earlier than February 1, 2021. Many Form 5500s are due next week, so the need for this relief is urgent. Otherwise, many such Form 5500s would be required to be filed showing unpaid minimum required contributions (MRCs), which might then need to be amended once the MRCs are made.... If the due date for the Form 5500 is not delayed, then the PBGC variable premium filing will also be due next week (unless otherwise delayed), meaning that any deferred contributions would not be taken into account for determining the amount of the variable rate premium due."

Tags: Coronavirus (COVID-19)  •  Retirement Plan Administration

Editor's Pick How the ACA Affordability Increase to 9.83% Affects Employers
ABD Insurance & Financial Services Link to more items from this source
[Guidance Overview]
July 22, 2020

"When designing 2021 employee contribution levels, consider these affordability safe harbors to avoid potential ACA employer mandate 'B Penalty' liability. Where possible and within budgetary constraints, employers should consider offering at least one medical plan option to full-time employees in all regions with an employee-share of the premium not exceeding $104/month for employee-only coverage."

Tags: Health Plan Costs  •  Health Plan Design

Editor's Pick FMLA Changes That Could Be On the Horizon
Fisher Phillips Link to more items from this source
July 22, 2020

"DOL published a request for information seeking public input about the way it interprets and implements the federal leave law ... [F]ive changes that could be on the horizon: [1] 'Serious health condition' definition ... [2] Intermittent and unplanned leave ... [3] Leave request process ... [4] Medical certification process ... [5] Formal guidance on specific opinion letters."

Tags: FMLA and Other Leave

Editor's Pick Compliance Issues for Health and Leave Benefits in 2021
Mercer Link to more items from this source
July 22, 2020

"[1] COVID-19 issues for group health plans.... [2] Transition back to a safe, healthy workplace.... [3] Paid leave.... [4] State activity.... [5] Prescription drug costs and coverage.... [6] Transparency rules.... [7] Data privacy and security.... [8] HSA, HRA and FSA developments.... [9] Preventive services.... [10] Other ongoing ACA concerns."

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

Editor's Pick Is Federally Mandated Paid Leave Coming in 2021?
Foley & Lardner LLP Link to more items from this source
July 21, 2020

"Because the [DOL Women's Bureau] does not have the authority to issue or enforce regulations, one might not expect its RFI to lead to specific regulations. However, because that RFI was immediately followed by another RFI on the same general topic (the FMLA) from [the WHD], the agency responsible for issuing and enforcing regulations on the FMLA, it is likely that some changes are certain to come. Whether those changes will involve mandatory pay requirements -- as suggested by the Bureau's RFI -- is to be seen."

Tags: FMLA and Other Leave

Editor's Pick The HSA Proportional Contribution Limit
ABD Insurance & Financial Services Link to more items from this source
[Guidance Overview]
July 20, 2020

"The standard rule is that employees who are HSA-eligible for only a portion of the calendar year have a reduced HSA contribution limit.... [A] special rule known as the 'last-month rule' may apply to permit the mid-year enrollee to contribute up to the full statutory limit -- even though the employee was not HSA-eligible for the full calendar year."

Tags: HSAs  •  Health Plan Design

Editor's Pick Allowing Cross-Plan Offsets Could Mean Danger for Plan Fiduciaries
Graydon Link to more items from this source
July 17, 2020

"In light of these recent lawsuits, and especially the DOL's stated belief it is a violation of ERISA, plan sponsors should take time to review their service agreements with carriers and TPAs to determine if off-setting is part of their overpayment recovery method. While recovery of overpayments is a valid fiduciary interest for plans, plan sponsors should discuss other possible methods or compromises with their service providers that do not result in cross-plan offsets."

Tags: Health Plan Costs  •  Health Plan Design

Editor's Pick COVID-19 Resource Guide: Employee Benefits Considerations for Reopening in 2020
Troutman Sanders Link to more items from this source
July 17, 2020

Outline provides action steps for various types of benefit plans. Topics include: [1] Onboarding furloughed employees; [2] Onboarding employees who have been laid off; [3] Other health and welfare plan considerations; [4] Other qualified plan considerations; [5] Reporting and disclosure considerations; [6] Fiduciary and governance issues; [7] Planning for remainder of 2020 and for 2021.

Tags: 401(k) Plans  •  Coronavirus (COVID-19)  •  Fringe Benefits (Transit, Discounts, etc.)  •  Health Plan Administration  •  Retirement Plan Administration

Editor's Pick Voluntary Transfers of Uncashed Checks from ERISA Plans to State Unclaimed Property Programs (PDF)
Advisory Council on Employee Welfare and Pension Benefit Plans, Employee Benefits Security Administration [EBSA], U.S. Department of Labor [DOL] Link to more items from this source
July 16, 2020

48 pages. "[T]he focus of the [ERISA Advisory Council] was to gain an understanding of the nature and operation of state unclaimed property programs and to evaluate the extent to which they might advance the goal of reuniting Missing Participants with their retirement savings and whether there are circumstances under which a plan fiduciary might voluntarily transfer uncashed checks to a state unclaimed property program."

Tags: Retirement Plan Administration  •  Retirement Plan Policy

Editor's Pick DOL Announces Enhancements to Assist Employees, Employers and Other Stakeholders in Use of Family and Medical Leave
Wage and Hour Division [WHD], U.S. Department of Labor [DOL] Link to more items from this source
[Guidance Overview]
July 16, 2020

"WHD’s new forms are simpler and easier for employees, employers, leave administrators and healthcare providers to understand and use. Revised with substantial public input, the forms include more questions that users can answer by checking a response box and electronic signature features to reduce contact. WHD believes the changes will reduce the time users spend providing information, improve communications between leave applicants and administrators and reduce the likelihood of violations."

Tags: FMLA and Other Leave

Editor's Pick DC Employees Now Eligible to Collect Benefits Under the Universal Paid Leave Amendment Act of 2016: List of Action Steps
Epstein Becker Green Link to more items from this source
[Guidance Overview]
July 16, 2020

"As of July 1, 2020, ... employees are now eligible to collect benefits.... [1] [M]ake sure to post and distribute the required notice.... [2] Identify employees covered by the Act in light of updated guidance, especially when so many employees are working remotely outside of DC during the COVID-19 pandemic.... [3] Consider how (or whether) current paid leave policies should change in light of the new UPL benefit.... [4] Check whether current policies distinguish between extended medical leave and brief sick leave to better coordinate across the expanding leave landscape."

Tags: FMLA and Other Leave  •  Local Regulation

Editor's Pick 2020 PBGC Premium Burden Report (PDF)
October Three Consulting Link to more items from this source
July 16, 2020

36 pages. "[M]any plan sponsors continue to pay much more in PBGC premiums than they should.... Missed savings in 2018 alone were $40 million.... Most employers have taken steps to manage this growing burden by settling liabilities and making voluntary contributions.... Many employers have also adopted other, simpler strategies for reducing premiums ... [T]hree Large Plans ... have paid more than $10 million between 2011 and 2018 that could have been avoided simply by recording contributions optimally."

Tags: Funding of DB Plans  •  Retirement Plan Administration

Editor's Pick Health Coverage for Employees on Military Leave
ABD Insurance & Financial Services Link to more items from this source
[Guidance Overview]
July 15, 2020

"Employers need to offer USERRA continuation coverage to employees who lose health plan coverage because they are called to active duty. Employers that are ALEs subject to the ACA employer mandate should take extra precautions in determining if and when employees will lose active coverage."

Tags: Health Plan Administration  •  Health Plan Design

Editor's Pick Offering CARES Act Distributions to Defined Benefit Plan Participants
Mercer Link to more items from this source
July 15, 2020

"Even if a plan already offers a lump sum, the employer still might want to designate payments (up to $100,000) to qualified individuals as CRDs so participants can take advantage of the reduced withholding.... DB plans not offering CRDs don't need to change their tax withholding and reporting for participants claiming CRD treatment for a plan distribution.... Employers whose plans don't already offer lump sums will need to amend their plans to provide for the new CRD option."

Tags: CARES Act  •  Coronavirus (COVID-19)  •  Retirement Plan Administration

Editor's Pick Summary of CARES Act and FFCRA Tax Credit and Payroll Tax Relief (PDF)
Troutman Sanders Link to more items from this source
[Guidance Overview]
July 15, 2020

15 pages; current as of Jul. 6, 2020. "This chart is a high-level overview of the various payroll and tax credit programs under the CARES Act and FFRCA [including the payroll tax credit for Emergency Sick and Family Leave]."

Tags: CARES Act  •  Coronavirus (COVID-19)  •  FFCRA  •  FMLA and Other Leave  •  Retirement Plan Administration  •  Retirement Plan Design

Editor's Pick Recent Developments in ERISA Plan Investment Regulation
Morgan Lewis Link to more items from this source
[Guidance Overview]
July 14, 2020

"While the ESG Proposal and [Information Letter 2020-06-03] may, respectively, discourage and encourage investments in the types of investments they address, and raise a number of issues that will require further consideration for those making these types of investments, [the DOL provides] commonality [in] the view that fiduciaries must focus on the expected pecuniary benefits of an investment to the plan and its participants and beneficiaries. In that respect, their approach is consistent with historic views on the fiduciary duty of prudence under ERISA, and it may be that the DOL's differences in approaches here are rooted in concerns that particular investments may raise under ERISA's duty of loyalty -- concerns that may be perceived as elevated in the ESG investment space."

Tags: Fiduciary Duties  •  Retirement Plan Investments  •  Retirement Plan Investments - ESG

Editor's Pick 2020 Relative TSR Prevalence and Design of S&P 500 Companies (PDF)
ExeQuity Link to more items from this source
July 14, 2020

11 pages. "In the absence of a reliable goal-setting process, compensation committees facing pressure to demonstrate pay-for-performance may increasingly turn to relative total shareholder return (RTSR) ... RTSR requires no goal setting, is simple to adopt, provides a defensible link to shareholder value, and has historically been accepted by shareholders and proxy advisors."

Tags: Coronavirus (COVID-19)  •  Executive comp

Editor's Pick IRS Temporarily Relaxes Cafeteria Plan Midyear Election Change and FSA Rules
Jones Walker Link to more items from this source
[Guidance Overview]
July 10, 2020

"Employers will need to engage with their cafeteria plan vendor to coordinate the implementation of any changes and to identify any potential issues or limitations, such as vendor capabilities. Employers wishing to adopt the claims period extension will also need to determine whether FSA forfeitures have already been applied to pay for plan expenses. If so, the employer will likely have to restore these amounts.... [E]mployers should consider how the changes will be communicated to employees, in accordance with ERISA (particularly for Health FSAs)."

Tags: Cafeteria Plans  •  Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Editor's Pick DOL Provides Retirement Plans with Additional Safe Harbor for Electronic Disclosure of Required Plan Notices Under ERISA
Trucker Huss Link to more items from this source
[Guidance Overview]
July 10, 2020

"The new, additional safe harbor does not supersede the 2002 safe harbor.1 It goes beyond the 2002 safe harbor by covering all retirement plan participants and beneficiaries who have not opted-out, not just those who are 'wired at work' or who affirmatively consent to electronic delivery. The final rule only applies to required retirement plan disclosures that are within the jurisdiction of the DOL and is fundamentally similar to the proposed rule, published on October 23, 2019."

Tags: Retirement Plan Administration

Editor's Pick How and Why to Design Pensions for Full Funding in the Real Word
Prof. Jonathan Barry Forman, via Marquette Law Review Link to more items from this source
July 9, 2020

109 pages. "[F]inancial planners often suggest that retiring workers should aim to replace 70 to 80% of their annual preretirement earnings. Social Security benefits typically replace around 35% of the typical worker's preretirement earnings, and the purpose of this Article is to show how pensions could and should be designed to replace, say, 40% of the typical worker's preretirement earnings throughout her retirement years. In particular, because so many public and private pension plans are underfunded, this Article focuses on how to fully fund those pensions."

Tags: Funding of DB Plans  •  Retirement Plan Design

Editor's Pick Key Points About the DOL's New Fiduciary Rule
Troutman Sanders Link to more items from this source
[Guidance Overview]
July 9, 2020

"The trigger for the application of the proposed exemption is that the investment advice fiduciary is already a regulated entity in the form of an RIA, registered broker dealer, bank or insurance company and their employees, agents and representatives. Apparently, a 'country squire' who is not associated with one of these entities cannot avail themselves of the exemption.... All five prongs of the five-part test must apply for a financial institution or investment professional to be an investment advice fiduciary when making a rollover recommendation."

Tags: Fiduciary Duties

Editor's Pick Satisfying Employee Benefit Plan Disclosure, Notice and Election Requirements During a Pandemic and Beyond
BakerHostetler Link to more items from this source
[Guidance Overview]
July 9, 2020

"The Internal Revenue Code and [ERISA] set forth numerous disclosure, notice and election requirements for employee benefit plans. These communications can involve thousands of pages per year, per participant, and be very expensive if they must be printed on paper and mailed. Few participants really want all that paper.... Pre-COVID-19 guidance regarding electronic media ... IRS Notice 2020-42: COVID-19 Temporary Guidance Regarding Electronic Elections ... EBSA Disaster Relief Notice 2020-01 ... DOL safe harbor for electronic media for retirement plans ... Deciding whether to adopt the DOL 2020 safe harbor for retirement plans."

Tags: Coronavirus (COVID-19)  •  Retirement Plan Administration

Editor's Pick The DOL's Fiduciary Proposal 3.0: Exemption and Investment Advice Fiduciary Definition (PDF)
Eversheds Sutherland Link to more items from this source
[Guidance Overview]
July 8, 2020

21 pages. "[It] now is more widely understood that: [1] There can be no financial services business model that is unconflicted in the absolute sense that ERISA presumes fiduciaries can be; and [2] At least in part, these conflicts arise from the industry's function in our financial system and are shaped by the primary pattern of regulation to which that industry is subject. Because those financial services are indispensable to the operation of the private retirement system, ERISA's share of the regulation of those industries must accommodate to those realities."

Tags: Fiduciary Duties  •  Retirement Plan Investments


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