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July 14, 2006
Today's sponsor: Employee Benefits Institute of America Inc. (EBIA)

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Banner ad for Employee Benefits Institute of America Inc. (EBIA)

Explore the Seven Wonders of the Benefits Compliance World

No HR or benefits professional's library would be complete without EBIA's compliance manuals. Save time and steer clear of compliance traps by joining thousands of professionals who rely on our manuals.

"I know I can rely on your manuals, above and beyond any others, to be clear, concise, easy to understand, and accurate!" -Director of Flexible Benefits


(Please visit our sponsors. We try to make sure their products and services will be of interest to you. Thanks! --Editor)

U.S. Lawmakers Target Pension Credit Balance Loophole
Excerpt: "U.S. lawmakers will produce a pension reform bill tough enough for President Bush to sign into law, partly by cracking down on an accounting loophole, House Majority Leader John Boehner said [yesterday]." (Reuters)

Fiduciary Investment Issues in Defined Contribution Plans (PDF)
8 pages. Excerpt: "The recent emergence of multiemployer 401(k), profit-sharing and money purchase plans as important retirement tools has led to a reexamination of the respective roles and responsibilities of trustees, money managers, consultants, brokers and other service providers. This article reviews trustee fiduciary duties relating to DC plan investments; shielding trustees from fiduciary liability for poor investment performance; and controlling investment costs and fees." (Benefits & Compensation Digest via International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans)

Vaughn v. Bay Environmental Management, Inc.; DOL's Amicus Curiae of June 7, 2006 (PDF)
34 pages. Excerpt: "Argument: Plaintiffs -- who claim that fiduciary breaches caused a diminution in the amount of benefits they were paid when defendant Bay Environmental terminated the defined contribution plans in which they participated -- have standing under ERISA to bring their suit." (U.S. Department of Labor, Employee Benefits Security Administration)

Moving Employer Stock to a Taxable Account
Excerpt: "QUESTION: Is it true that stock held in a 401(k) can be withdrawn and placed in a taxable account and ordinary income tax would be due only on the cost basis of the stock?" (SmartMoney.com)

Invesmart's Plan Sponsor Newsletter, Summer 2006 (PDF)
6 pages. This edition features: StanCorp's Pending Acquisition of Invesmart; Quarterly Commentary; Roth Reminders; Web Service Update; Labor Department Unveils Retirement Planning Resource For Hispanic Americans; and, Common Plan Sponsor Concerns. (Invesmart)

Should You Invest In Your 401(k) or Your Home Mortgage?
Excerpt: "'We'd like to make extra principal payments on our home mortgage each month, but we can't do that and invest for retirement. Which should have the priority?' There's no one-size-fits-all answer -- your age, your tax bracket, what you would do with the tax savings from your mortgage interest, how long you expect to live in your home, and your general attitude toward being debt-free all play significant roles." (Sound Mind Investing via AgapePress)

How Does Automatic Enrollment in 401(k) Plans Work? (PDF)
4 pages. Excerpt: "To help plan sponsors weigh whether automatic enrollment could help them increase plan participation, [July Business Services answers] questions about, and look at some developments concerning, this plan feature." (July Business Services)

A Bill for Thought: Dividends, Pension Contributions, and California
Excerpt: "According to CFO.com, the State of California may soon prohibit a company from paying out dividends or buying back shares until all required defined benefit plan payments have been made. AB 2122, introduced by Democrat Johan Klehs, could impact corporate leaders individually as well...." (Pension Risk Matters)

Adviser Says U.K. Not Breaking E.U. Pension Law
Excerpt: "Flaws in the United Kingdom's protection for workers who lose their pensions when firms go bust are not big enough to make the country liable to make up the shortfalls, an adviser to the European Union's top court said [yesterday]." (Business Insurance)

Hewitt's Global Retirement Update, July 2006 (PDF)
3 pages. Excerpt: "This update summarizes recent legislative developments and trends related to retirement and financial management and highlights recently passed and pending legislation that may require employers to take action to comply with new rules or review existing plans." (Hewitt Associates)

Lawsuit Over Pension Fund Settled: Former Harnischfeger Employees to Split $10.8 Million
Excerpt: "The settlement, finalized in U.S. District Court in Boston, will result in the money being distributed among about 4,700 current and past employees, including retirees. The amount each person receives will depend on how much he or she lost in the pension plan -- but it will be less than the full amount lost, according to court documents." (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel via Human Resource Executive Online; one-time registration required)

Overview: IRS Offers Fixes for Common Failures Found in SIMPLE IRAs, SEPs
Excerpt: "Common mistakes which can cause plans to become disqualified, according to the IRS, include the failure to update plans for recently enacted laws, the failure to pass the deferral percentage test (for SARSEPs), and under- or over-contributions to funds." (CCH Pension & Benefits)


Links to Items on Executive Comp, Benefits in General

Text of the 2006 Form 5500 and Instructions
Excerpt: "[According to the press release, t]he modifications to the Form 5500 for plan year 2006 are described under 'Changes to Note' in the 2006 Instructions. Of particular importance, the Schedule P (Annual Return of Fiduciary of Employee Benefit Trust) is no longer required; the instructions for the Schedules H and I are updated to refer to EBSA's revised Voluntary Fiduciary Correction Program and companion exemption; new addresses for submitting late filing penalties...." (U.S. Department of Labor, Employee Benefits Security Administration)


We thank and invite your attention to our additional sponsor: The Center for Tax Law and Employee Benefits at The John Marshall Law School

(Click on company name or banner to learn more.)
Banner ad for The Center for Tax Law and Employee Benefits at The John Marshall Law School

You Have the Potential. We Have the Programs.

Are you working in human resources? Are you dealing with health insurance plans or pension benefits? Learn how you can broaden your experience with an M.S. degree (for non-lawyers) or LL.M degree (for attorneys) in employee benefits from The John Marshall Law School in Chicago during an information session from 5 to 7 p.m., Wednesday, August 2. Learn how these unique programs can help advance your career.

(Please visit our sponsors. We try to make sure their products and services will be of interest to you. Thanks! --Editor)

Newly Posted Events
(Post Yours!)

Challenges and Solutions for Mature ESOP Companies
in Pennsylvania on September 26, 2006
presented by National Center for Employee Ownership

ESOP Feasibility: Beyond the Basics
in Minnesota on October 3, 2006
presented by National Center for Employee Ownership

Rewards Risk Management: Hidden Accounting and Compliance Risks in Your Global Compensation Programs - Webcast
Nationwide on August 2, 2006
presented by Deloitte

Stock Option Backdating
Nationwide on August 17, 2006
presented by National Center for Employee Ownership


Newly Posted Press Releases
(Post Yours!)

Employer Cash Incentives for Hybrids Are Taxable
(Internal Revenue Service (IRS))

Pension Bill Conferees Warned That House Provisions On Cash Balance Issues Do Not Protect Older Workers
(Pension Rights Center)

Aetna Introduces Vital Savings on Health: Industry-First Offering Combines Discounted Care with Debit Card Feature
(Aetna)

Three-Year Study Shows Consumer-Driven Health Plans Continue to Stimulate Positive Changes in Consumer Health Behavior
(UnitedHealth Group)

Health Coaching Best Practices Outlined in New White Paper from Leade Health
(Leade Health)

Former Senator John Breaux Launches Podcast on Health Care Reform From His Ceasefire on Health Care Campaign
(Ceasefire on Health Care)


Newly Posted or Renewed Job Openings
Post a Help Wanted Ad

Plan Administrator
for Third Party Administration Firm
in FL

401(k) Administrator - Analyst
for The Pension Group, Inc.
in CA

Regional Vice President - NC, SC and VA
for BISYS Retirement Services
in NC, SC, VA

Senior Plan Administrator
for American National Insurance Company
in TX

Pension Plan Administrator
for Qualified Plans, LLC
in GA

Benefits Coordinator
for Montgomery County Government
in MD

Retirement Policy and Planning Specialist
for University of California, Office of the President
in CA

Relationship Manager for Business Development Group
for Transamerica
in IL

Implementation Project / Program Manager
for Fidelity Investments
in NC, NH

Bookkeeper/Assistant Plan Administrator
for RSM McGladrey Retirement Resources
in MD

Employee Benefits Tax Manager
for Deloitte
in NJ

Design Analyst (Insurance/Benefits)
for Clark Consulting
in TX




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