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December 6, 2006

Sponsored by: Employee Benefits Institute of America Inc. (EBIA)

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Record Retention Requirements for Health & Welfare Plans

In Record Retention Requirements for Health & Welfare Plans, EBIA's experts analyze record retention requirements for ERISA health and welfare plans as well as other employer-provided health and welfare benefits not subject to ERISA. You'll find answers to your record retention questions for many benefits including cafeteria plans, DCAPs, qualified transportation plans, HSAs, group health plans (like major medical, dental, health FSAs, and HRAs), and other ERISA benefits.
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UnitedHealth Foundation Releases the Nation's Annual Health Checkup
Excerpt: "Americans' continued smoking habits and spike in obesity have slowed improvements in the country's overall health, according to a report . . . ." (The Washington Times)

Overview: HIPAA National Provider Identifier Deadline (PDF)
2 pages. Excerpt: "The next Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) mandate requires health plans to use a new National Provider Identifier (NPI) when conducting certain HIPAA standard electronic transactions. NPI capability must be tested and implemented by May 23, 2007. [This Bulletin discusses this new requirement which may even affect health plans that do not conduct HIPAA standard transactions.]" (The Segal Group, Inc.)

Audio: Make the Most of Your Employee Benefits
Excerpt: "This time of year, many employers hold 'open enrollment,' a time when workers can choose or modify benefits. Host Madeleine Brand speaks with Day to Day personal finance contributor Michelle Singletary about making the most of 'open enrollment' offerings." (Day to Day via National Public Radio)

Wisconsin State Lawmakers' Past Sick Leave Can Now Be Recorded
Excerpt: "Members of the state Assembly were told Tuesday that they may now report sick leave use retroactively, changing a previous policy that didn't allow them to claim it for past absences." (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

Companies Offer Employees a Range of Concierge Conveniences
Excerpt: "Such employee-friendly perks [free gift wrapping, for one] --inexpensive when compared with benefits such as company-paid health care--go a long way toward buying goodwill in an era where time is scarce, experts say." (Chicago Tribune; free registration required)

Do You Know What Is Happening to Health Care Costs for Boston? Consider This Number: $2,228,099
Excerpt: "That is what it will cost the City of Boston, on average, for health insurance alone for a single employee, say a cop or a teacher, over a lifetime, according to Segal Co., the city's actuarial consultant. That is $2.2 million per employee on a city payroll that currently has 16,400 employees and another 12,600 retirees and their dependents." (The Boston Globe)

West Virginia's Public Employee Insurance Agency Benefits Underfunded by $8 Billion
Excerpt: "Currently, retirees pay $62 million in premiums, but their health care costs $170 million, officials noted. 'This is more than the Teacher's Retirement and Worker's Compensation underfunded liabilities combined,' . . . . 'By changing benefits now, PEIA can reduce the current unfunded liability and slow the growth of future liability.'" (The Intelligencer & Wheeling News Register)

According to The Top Seven Health Industry Trends of '07 Survey Consumers Lack Belief in EHRs
Excerpt: "Despite all of the studies and articles on the benefits of electronic health care records to health care, most consumers are still not convinced that the technology will improve their medical care, finds a new report by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC)." (PricewaterhouseCoopers via

Links to Items on Executive Comp, Benefits in General

Overview: Requirements for Sec. 409A Reporting/Withholding & for Employer Securities Diversification (PDF)
3 pages. Excerpt: "On November 30, 2006, the Treasury Department and IRS issued two important pieces of guidance. Notice 2006-100 provides guidance under Code section 409A on the reporting and withholding requirements for 2005 and 2006 with respect to deferrals and amounts includible in income under that provision. Notice 2006-107 provides transitional guidance on the new diversification requirements under the [PPA] for employer securities held by defined contribution plans." (Miller & Chevalier Chartered)

City of Columbia, Missouri, Plan Would Offer Domestic Partner Benefits
Excerpt: "The city of Columbia would become one of four governments in the state that offer health care benefits to domestic partners, including same-sex couples, if the City Council follows through with a recommendation from the Employee Benefits Committee." (Columbia Missourian)

Public Employee Same-Sex Benefits in Alaska Proving to Be No Issue and Little Cost
Excerpt: "Never mind the legal chaos at the state level, confused further by the swearing in of a new governor Monday. The municipality, the Anchorage School District and the Alaska Railroad are all moving ahead with plans to provide benefits for same-sex partners of employees." (The Anchorage Daily News)

Hay Group's Executive Edition, No. 3, 2006
Excerpt: "In this issue: Regulatory - Executive Employment Agreements: Why, When, and What - Addressing the Challenge of the New Executive Pay Disclosure Rules; Data - 2006 Survey of Executive Severance Policies; Trends and Hot Topics - Increasing Accountability for Executive Compensation within Not-for-Profit Organizations." (Hay Group)

Principal Survey Finds Concern about the Future
Excerpt: "Almost three-quarters of employees (71%) and half of retirees (50%) said they were very concerned about their long-term financial future, according to the latest Principal Financial Well-Being Index." (; free registration required)

Lawmakers Expected to Target Stock Option Tax Laws
Excerpt: "Capitol Hill watchers expect the new Congress to try eliminating a corporate-tax deduction that encourages companies to award executives with stock options . . . ." (Investment News; free registration required)

Newly Posted Events
(Post Yours!)

Do-It-Yourself Compliance Reviews for Cafeteria Plans and Health Plans -- Ten Ways to Identify and Fix Problems Before They Cost You
Nationwide on November 30, 2006
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America Inc. (EBIA)

ERISA Basics Series #2: Working With Employee "Cash or Deferred" Arrangements -- What You Need to Know About Section 401(k)
Nationwide on January 30, 2007
presented by ABA Joint Committee on Employee Benefits

Newly Posted Press Releases
(Post Yours!)

U.S. Labor Department Announces Availability of 2006 Form M-1 for Multiple Employer Welfare Arrangements Online Filing Available
U.S. Department of Labor, Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA)

U.S. Labor Department Sues Baltimore Co. for Failing to Distribute 401(K) Funds After It Went Out of Business
U.S. Department of Labor, Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA)

U.S. Labor Department Obtains Default Judgment Appointing Independent Trustee for Abandoned Cincinnati 401(k) Plan
U.S. Department of Labor, Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA)

U.S. Labor Department Obtains Agreement Restoring Assets to Abandoned Utah 401(k) Plan
U.S. Department of Labor, Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA)

2007 Health Care Purchasing Coalitions Directory Now Available
International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans

International Foundation Announces 2007 Executive Committee
International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans

CitiStreet Assures Customers PPA is Beneficial and Manageable

More Employees Will Take Home a Gift or Bonus this Year, BNA Survey Finds, But Will Have Less Time Off to Enjoy It
BNA, Inc.

NAM Advocates FMLA Reform To Protect Employee Benefits
National Association of Manufacturers (NAM)

Top Advisors Take A Stand For Employers and Employees
PrimeTRUST Advisors

Newly Posted or Renewed Job Openings
Post a Help Wanted Ad

Actuarial Consultant
for RSM McGladrey Retirement Resources
in IL

Retirement Plan Administrator
for PEN-CAL Administrators, Inc.
in CA

Sr. Operations Manager
for CitiStreet
in FL

Retirement Compliance Testing Manager
for Vanguard
in PA

Plan Review Consultant
for Vanguard
in AZ

Consulting Associate-Temporary
for McCready and Keene, Inc.
in IN

ERISA Consultant
for BISYS Retirement Services
in MN

Relationship Manager
for MassMutual Financial Group
in MD

Retirement Sales Consultant/Sales Executive
for BenefitStreet, Inc.
in NY

Business Development - Retirement Coordinator
for BISYS Retirement Services
in PA

Supervisor - Plan Reconciliation
for BISYS Retirement Services
in PA

Relationship Manager - Client Service
for BISYS Retirement Services
in PA

Senior Benefits Analyst
for Affiliated Computer Services
in NJ

Retirement Plan Consultant
for Diversified Investment Advisors
in NC

Senior Benefits Administrator
for Sodexho
in MD

Pension Administrator
for Northwestern Mutual Financial Network
in NJ

Defined Contribution Pension Plan Administrator
for The Angell Pension Group, Inc.

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