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Retirement Plans
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November 19, 2002 - 12,959 subscribers
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(Help BenefitsLink to provide this newsletter at no charge to you -- our sponsors pay your way. Remember to visit them periodically; we try to make sure their products and services will be of interest to you. Thanks! --Editor)
IRS Extends GUST Remedial Amendment Period in Rev. Proc. 2002-73 (PDF)
5 pages. Excerpt: "[T]he revenue procedure extends the time for amending pre-approved plans to comply with GUST to September 30, 2003 [and] extends the time for amending plans to comply with Rev. Rul. 2001-62 ... regarding changes to the mortality tables under § 417(e) ... and Rev. Rul. 2002-27 ... regarding the incorporation of deemed § 125 compensation in a plan's § 415(c)(3) definition of compensation ... to the end of the plan's GUST remedial amendment period." (Internal Revenue Service)

CalPERS to Corporations: Come Home
Press release. Excerpt: "The California Public Employees' Retirement System (CalPERS) Board of Administration voted today to lend its support to shareholders proposals urging three companies-- McDermott International, Ingersoll-Rand Company and Tyco International-- to bring the incorporation of their businesses back to the United States." (California Public Employees' Retirement System)

AP Coverage: CalPERS Votes Against Offshore HQs
Excerpt: "CalPERS, the nation's largest public pension fund, agreed to co-sponsor resolutions with the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees to change the formal addresses of Tyco International, Ingersoll-Rand and McDermott International.... AFSCME is leading the effort to recruit public pension funds around the country to force the issue. About 20 public companies are incorporated offshore ..." (AP via Yahoo! News)

Trouble in Trenton: Firefighters Plan Wants Money Back from Fire Chief Hired by City Government
Excerpt: "It was the latest of several moves by the pension board to re-enroll and demand repayment of pensions by city employees who retired from uniformed positions in either the police or fire departments to assume civilian posts involving their former departments." (The [Trenton, N.J.] Times via NJ.com)

Survey: Workers Still Like 401(k) Plans
Excerpt: "Employees of small businesses still like the concept of employee-funded retirement plans such as 401(k) plans, in spite of the recent stock market slump ... [D]espite the slump, 73% of the employees surveyed said they preferred 401(k) plans to traditional, company-directed pension plans." (The National Underwriter Company via International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans)

401(k) Plans Likely To Boost Bequests
Press release, with link to full text of the issue brief. Excerpt: "The emergence of 401(k) plans as the dominant component of the private pension system will likely boost bequests by up to $28 billion per year by 2004.... The brief-- co-authored by Alicia Munnell, Annika Sunden, Mauricio Soto and Catherine Taylor-- explores the impact of private pension trends on individuals' behavior in retirement." (Center for Retirement Research at Boston College)

Deemed IRAs: a Welcomed New Plan Design Feature
Excerpt: "[EGTRRA] added ... Section 408(q) ... This new section, entitled deemed IRAs under qualified employer plans, permits participants to make IRA contributions to a 'qualified employer plan,' beginning for plan years after December 31, 2002. This means that traditional or Roth IRA contributions can be made to an employer's qualified plan (including a 401(a), 401(k), ESOP, 403(a) annuity, and governmental 401(a) plan), governmental 457(b) plan, or a 403(b) annuity." (Groom Law Group)

Analysis: IRS Clears Way for Cash Balance Plans to Adopt New Mortality Table
Excerpt: "The change to the GAR mortality table is expected to result in a roughly 2 to 3 percent decrease in the annual annuity benefit for participants in cash balance plans. This ... led cash balance plan sponsors to question whether amending their plans to implement this change would violate the anticutback rule [IRC section 411(d)(6)] and/or trigger the ERISA section 204(h) notice requirements." (Deloitte & Touche Human Capital Advisory Services)

Links to Items on Executive Comp, Benefits in General

Year-End Checkup for Benefit Plans
8 pages; Nov. 18, 2002. Excerpt: "This Alert will help identify year-end administrative and planning issues that could lead to compliance or employee relations problems if not addressed before or fairly early in 2003. In addition, we have included reminders about recent developments affecting benefit plans or participants." (Aon Consulting)

When To Hire An ERISA/Employee Benefits Attorney
Excerpt: "[Q]ualified retirement plan issues which companies should consider involving an experienced ERISA attorney are: Merging an existing Money Purchase Plan with an existing 401(k) Plan or Profit Sharing Plan ...; EGTRRA Compliance and Planning; Determining Fiduciary Liability Issues; Sarbanes-Oxley Act planning for blackout periods, company stock and audit oversight; Providing Investment Advice to Participants; 401(k) Plan Fees; and Withdrawal liability from multi-employer pension plans." (Attorney Jeff Robertson of Bullivant Houser Bailey, P.C., published by 401kHelpCenter.com)

Industry Executive Jim Smith of SunGard Corbel Dies at 53
Very sad news. Excerpt: "Jim's affable personality, tied with a very strong sense of customer service, made him a favorite with his co-workers, employees and clients alike. His passing leaves an emptiness in all of us that will not soon be replaced." (SunGard Corbel)

FASB Invitation to Comment Explains Differences Between IASB Proposal and Current FASB Statement
Press release. Excerpt: "[The] Invitation to Comment explains the similarities of and differences between the proposed guidance on accounting for stock-based compensation included in the International Accounting Standards Board's (IASB's) recently issued exposure draft and the accounting for stock-based compensation under FASB Statement 123.... A copy of the document is available on the FASB's website." (Financial Accounting Standards Board)

FASB Seeks Comments on Proposal to Expense Stock Options
Excerpt: "The Financial Accounting Standards Board is asking for comment on an International Accounting Standards Board proposal issued earlier this month to make companies expense stock options, as it decides whether it should follow suit and require the same of U.S. companies." (Reuters via Forbes.com)

Newly Posted or Renewed Job Openings
Post a Help Wanted Ad

Pension Plan Administrator
for Elliott Davis, LLC
in SC

Defined Benefit, New Business Consultant
for NYLIM Retirement Plan Services LLC
in MA

Benefits Financial Manager
for Zurich North America
in IL

Newly Posted Webcasts
(Post Yours!)

iSeminar for Plan Sponsors - Understanding & Managing your Fiduciary Responsibility
on November 20, 2002
presented by Caterpillar Investment Management Ltd.

Employers Blaze New Trails With Consumer-Driven Health Care
on November 13, 2002
presented by Hewitt Associates

Newly Posted Press Releases
(Post Yours!)

Benefit Software Inc. Releases Version 6.12 of Fringe Facts® Communicator
(Benefit Software Inc.)

Successful Strategic Alliance Prompts Launch of Vinings Mellon Nonqualified Benefit Plans and Taxable Trusts Venture
(Vinings Mellon, LLC.)

Alexander Hamilton Institute Releases New Free Report: Whistleblowing: A New Perspective On An Old Issue
(Alexander Hamilton Institute)

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Editor and Publisher: David Rhett Baker, J.D.