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The BenefitsLink Newsletter -
Retirement Plans Edition
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January 10, 2002 - 12,782 subscribers
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Discussion of Confusing Example in IRS Explanation of Savers Tax Credit, With Suggested Improvement
Link to useful discussion and contribution on our message boards. Excerpt: "Has anyone had a chance to look at the sample employee notice for the new EGTRRA saver's credit for contributions to a 401(k) or IRA (IRS Announcement 2001-106)? Is it just me or is the first example that they use totally incomprehensible?" (BenefitsLink Message Boards)

California Legislators Struggle to Bring State Tax Laws Into Conformity With EGTRRA Changes
Excerpt: "[I]t is likely that California will enact legislation later this year, to conform to EGTRRA. In the meantime, an employee has two options: (a) defer up to the maximum federal limits in anticipation of timely changes to state law, with the potential of exceeding state income tax deduction limits if state law changes are delayed; and (b) under-defer, for federal purposes, until such time as state law catches up to the EGTRRA standard." (Christine P. Roberts, Esq. on BenefitsLink)

Table Showing Conformity of State Personal Income Tax Codes to Internal Revenue Code (PDF)
Excerpt: "The following table identifies states having a personal income tax, identifies which version of the federal Income Revenue Code (IRC), if any, the state uses for its personal income tax base, and cites the relevant state statutes." (Aon, published by Profit Sharing/401(k) Council of America)

ERIC Calls on Bush to Support Change in Pension Funding Interest Rates
Excerpt: "The ERISA Industry Committee (ERIC) strongly urges you to include in your February budget proposals to Congress relief from excessive pension funding requirements caused by the discontinuance of and precipitous drop in the rate of 30-year Treasury bonds." (ERISA Industry Committee)

Another Question is Answered in the Distributions: Taxation and Planning Q&A Column
In terms of designating a trust as a beneficiary of a qualified plan/IRA, is it possible to use the separate account provisions of the 2001 proposed regulations to use the age of each beneficiary to determine the proper required minimum distribution? Would the oldest beneficiary's age be used for determining the required minimum distribution, or would the age of each beneficiary under each of the separate trusts/accounts be used? (BenefitsLink.com)

Another Question is Answered in the Who's the Employer Q&A Column
I know you take the position that professional employer organizations are generally not the employer of the workers on their payroll which they lease to others. However, in my state there is a law which says that the workers are employees of the PEO. So, can we go ahead and set up a single employer plan for the PEO on that basis? (BenefitsLink.com)

Instructions for December 2001 Revision of Form SS-4 (PDF)
Excerpt: "Under the Tele-TIN program, you can receive your EIN by telephone and use it immediately to file a return or make a payment. To receive an EIN by telephone, IRS suggests that you complete Form SS-4 so that you will have all relevant information available. Then call the Tele-TIN number at 1-866-816-2065." (Internal Revenue Service)

County Officials' Million-dollar Pensions Bring More Complaints
Excerpt: "Under the pension provisions, people who choose to take a partial lump-sum payment get lower annual pension payments. The upgrades also would result in several other county officials' receiving lump sums of more than $1 million." (StarTribune.com)

Milwaukee County Official Moves to Eliminate Lump-Sum Payment Option
Excerpt: "Ament claims that no one knew how gigantic the lump-sums could be, including three high-level staffers that came up with the plan. They'd all become millionaires." (WISN via Yahoo! News)

New Procedures for Obtaining Employer Identification Numbers
Excerpt: "The following changes become effective January 2, 2002 ... Taxpayers (but not a third party designee) can call a single toll-free telephone number to get an Employer Identification Number (EIN). When this phone number is activated, IRS customer service representatives in three IRS Service Centers will respond to taxpayer calls Monday through Friday from 7:30 a.m.- 5:30 p.m. local time." (American Society of Pension Actuaries)

Bush Orders Review of Pension Rules
Excerpt: "President Bush, associated with a collapsed energy corporation facing congressional inquiry, ordered his economic team Thursday to review pension and company disclosure rules that could jeopardize workers' life savings." (StarTribune.com)

(Following items are in both editions of the BenefitsLink Newsletter)


Employers Battle California Crackdown on Use of "Independent Contractors"
Excerpt: "Over the past fiscal year, audits of 4,600 employers by the Department of Industrial Relations determined that 67,000 employees had been misclassified as independent contractors." (Sacramento Bee via International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans)

DuPont Offers Stock Options To Employees As Anniversary Celebration
Excerpt: "DuPont executives said Wednesday they are giving their employees around the world 200 stock options each as part of the company's 200th anniversary celebration. Nearly all 85,000 workers will be eligible to buy 200 shares of DuPont stock for $44.50 a share anytime during a 10-year period beginning in July 2003, with some conditions." (DelawareOnline.com)




Newly Posted or Renewed Job Openings - Post a Help Wanted Ad
Pension/Employee Benefits Specialist for Diversified Investment Advisors
in
MN
Retirement Plan Administrator for Nationwide Retirement Plan Services
in
OH
401(k) Sales Consultant for PlanMember Financial Corporation
in
ALL STATES, AZ, CA, CO, NV, OH, UT
Mid-Level Actuarial Analyst for Watson Wyatt Worldwide
in
MI, OH
Employee Benefits Audit Manager for Kraft CPAs
in
TN
Employee Benefits Audit Senior for Kraft CPAs
in
TN
Compliance Analyst for Leggette Actuaries, Inc.
in
TX
Vice President, National Sales for Corporate Benefit Services of America, Inc.
in
KS, MI, MO, OH
Institutional Financial Consultant for TIAA-CREF
in
MA
Account Executive - Business Development for ExpertPlan,Inc.
in
NJ



Newly Posted Conferences (Post Yours!)
Opportunities & Challenges: Stock Options in Today's Economyin CA on April 9, 2002
presented by National Center for Employee Ownership
Opportunities & Challenges: Stock Options in Today's Economyin NC on June 4, 2002
presented by National Center for Employee Ownership
Opportunities & Challenges: Stock Options in Today's Economyin MA on June 5, 2002
presented by National Center for Employee Ownership
2002 Diamond Degree Selectin CA on March 20, 2002
presented by PenServ Inc.



Newly Posted Press Releases (Post Yours!)
Alexander Hamilton Institute Releases New Free Reports, "Controlling Rising Health Care Costs" and "State Discrimination Record-Keeping Requirements" (Alexander Hamilton Institute)
New Captive Insurance Association Launched in DC (Captive Insurance Council of the District of Columbia, Inc.)



Newly Posted Announcements of Promotions and New Personnel (Post Yours!)
Sue A. Trammel (Benefit Plan Audit Services, LLC)

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Copyright 2001 BenefitsLink.com, Inc., but you may freely distribute this email newsletter in whole. This newsletter is edited by David Rhett Baker, J.D.