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January 28, 2008

Here are the Web's best new links about compliance and cost aspects of plan operation, design and policy.


Today's sponsor is www.ftwilliam.com

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[Guidance Overview] Cycle C Determination Letter Submission Period Begins on Feb. 1, 2008
Excerpt: "The Cycle B determination letter submission program will end on January 31, 2008 and the Cycle C submission period will begin on February 1, 2008, the IRS has reminded plan sponsors. Under the staggered remedial amendment procedures set out in Rev. Proc. 2007-44 . . ., sponsors of individually designed plans must submit applications for determination letters in five-year cycles, based on the Employer Identification Number (EIN) used on the Form 5500." (Wolters Kluwer Financial Services)

[Guidance Overview] IRS Updates General Procedures for Issuing Letter Rulings and Determination Letters
Excerpt: "The IRS has published its general instructions and procedures to be used by taxpayers requesting letter rulings and determination letters. The revenue procedure is generally effective as of January 7, 2008." (Wolters Kluwer Financial Services)

[Guidance Overview] PBGC Proposes Rules on New Termination Information Disclosure Requirements
Excerpt: "As noted, the new termination disclosure requirements are effective for terminations initiated on or after August 17, 2006. However, the proposed regulations will apply only to requests for information made on or after the effective date of the final regulations." (Deloitte via BenefitsLink.com)

[Guidance Overview] Plan Administrator Cleared of Wrongdoing in Restitution Demand
Excerpt: "A federal judge has ruled that the administrator of a profit-sharing plan was entitled to demand that a participant reimburse $231,065 for benefits mistakenly distributed to him." (PLANSPONSOR.com; free registration required)

Employers Offering Array of New 401(k) Tools, Making It Easier Than Ever to Save for Retirement
Excerpt: "Employers are providing online tools, workshops and even professional one-on-one financial counseling to help workers manage their 401(k) investments. Such education is essential, because employees are responsible for more decisions with a 401(k) plan than with a pension . . . ." (Star-Telegram)

Benchmarks Sought for Target-Date Funds
Excerpt: "Consultants and executives at 401(k) plans are seeking universally accepted benchmarks to differentiate among funds in the booming target-date world. So far, Dow Jones Indexes and Target Date Analytics are providing that information, and more are expected to offer benchmarks soon." (Financial Week; free registration required)

A Focus on Financial Education for Employees (PDF)
12 pages. The target document is an interview with Dallas Salisbury, president & CEO of EBRI, focusing on the need for financial education and tools that show employees the probability of reaching retirement-income goals. (PIMCO)

Survey Shows Americans Delay Spending IRAs
Excerpt: "Americans who have money stored in Individual Retirement Accounts tend to hang on to it for use in the later years of their retirement, according to a study being released Monday. The Investment Company Institute, a Washington, D.C.-based trade association, found that less than one-fifth of households with IRAs made withdrawals from their accounts in tax year 2006, with the typical withdrawal averaging about 6 percent of the balance." (The Washington Post; free registration required)

[Opinion] The Current State of the Markets and Its Effect on 401(k) Plans
2 pages. Excerpt: "How does all of this capital market volatility affect 401(k) plans? First, while the factors . . . are all significant, there is nothing that we see that would suggest a change in strategy for our plan clients and their investments. All of the fundamental ERISA investment process steps remain sound and continue to be the basis for good plan governance. At the plan sponsor level, we continue to carefully monitor the qualitative and quantitative criteria used to evaluate the investment choices in your plans." (Michael J. Malone, MJM401k)


Sponsored by: ASPPA

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Banner ad for ASPPA

The ASPPA 401(k) SUMMIT

Join over 1,400 colleagues at the retirement industry's longest running conference dedicated solely to retirement plan sales and investment professionals , The ASPPA 401(k) SUMMIT. Attend advisor centered workshops, general sessions with internationally known speakers, secure insurance and other CE credits, network with your peers and more in Orlando, Florida, February 10-12, 2008. Don't miss your opportunity to join the best of the best.
Early bird savings apply so register NOW.

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

Links to Items on Executive Comp, Benefits in General

[Opinion] Vanguard Economist on the U.S. Outlook for 2008
Excerpt: "In two multimedia presentations -- an 8-1/2-minute video and an audiocast -- Joseph Davis, Ph.D., a principal and economist for Vanguard's Investment Counseling & Research and Fixed Income Groups, takes a hard look at what may be in store for the U.S. economy in 2008." (The Vanguard Group)

[Guidance Overview] Employee Benefits as of January 24, 2008 (PDF)
5 pages. This edition includes: A Look at ERISA Litigation: Preemption of San Francisco's Health Reform Law; Qualified Plan Queries: IRS Informally Indicates No Redlining of Plans Required for Cycle B Submissions; EEOC Regulations Resolving the Erie County Issue; Exec Comp Corner: SEC Comments on Year 1 Compensation Disclosures; and, Payroll Tax & Fringe Benefit Pointers: Reporting Settlement Payments to Claimants and Their Law Firms. (Miller & Chevalier Chartered)

When Pay Isn't Enough to Keep Workers
Excerpt: "As most employees know, a big paycheck is great. But good benefits can be an even bigger draw, adding thousands of dollars to a worker's compensation package. In South Florida, where the cost of living is high, employers are making efforts to keep their stars happy and offer the perks workers care about." (Miami Herald)

Some Good News for Unions in 2007
Excerpt: "The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) is reporting a rise in union membership: In 2007, the number of workers belonging to a union rose by 311,000 to 15.7 million, the U.S. Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Union members accounted for 12.1 percent of employed wage and salary workers, essentially unchanged from 12.0 percent in 2006. In 1983, the first year for which comparable union data are available, the union membership rate was 20.1 percent." (Workplace Prof Blog)

Tough Regulations Won't Derail Appeal of Executive Deferred Compensation
Excerpt: "Despite the Internal Revenue Service's final ruling last year on Section 409A, which changes the way non-qualified deferred-compensation plans are governed, an overwhelming majority of companies say they will continue to offer these retirement benefits to their top executives." (Financial Week; free registration required)

Workforce Trends - An AARP Study of Employers and Workers in Puerto Rico
Excerpt: "Two AARP surveys in Puerto Rico suggest that to prevent a labor shortage within their companies, employers in Puerto Rico need to address the retaining and recruiting of older employees." (AARP)

Ford To Offer Employees Buyouts and Early Retirement Packages
Excerpt: "Ford Motor [this past] Thursday announced it will offer buyout and early retirement packages to its hourly workers as part of a restructuring plan to bring in new workers that will receive lower pay and benefits, the AP/Richmond Times-Dispatch reports. The new wage system was established during last year's contract negotiations with United Auto Workers . . . ." (Kaiser Family Foundation)


Newly Posted Events
(Post Yours!)

2008 Midwinter Tour: Beyond the Essentials
in District of Columbia on February 6, 2008
presented by BISYS Retirement Services

2008 Midwinter Tour: Beyond the Essentials
in Kentucky on February 6, 2008
presented by BISYS Retirement Services

2008 Midwinter Tour: Beyond the Essentials
in Maryland on February 8, 2008
presented by BISYS Retirement Services

2008 Midwinter Tour: Beyond the Essentials
in Tennessee on February 8, 2008
presented by BISYS Retirement Services

2008 Midwinter Tour: Beyond the Essentials
in Pennsylvania on February 13, 2008
presented by BISYS Retirement Services

2008 Midwinter Tour: Beyond the Essentials
in Oklahoma on February 13, 2008
presented by BISYS Retirement Services

2008 Midwinter Tour: Beyond the Essentials
in Massachusetts on February 15, 2008
presented by BISYS Retirement Services

2008 Midwinter Tour: Beyond the Essentials
in Texas on February 15, 2008
presented by BISYS Retirement Services

2008 Midwinter Tour: Beyond the Essentials
in Wisconsin on February 27, 2008
presented by BISYS Retirement Services

2008 Midwinter Tour: Beyond the Essentials
in Wisconsin on February 29, 2008
presented by BISYS Retirement Services

2008 Midwinter Tour: IRA Essentials
in District of Columbia on February 5, 2008
presented by BISYS Retirement Services

2008 Midwinter Tour: IRA Essentials
in Kentucky on February 5, 2008
presented by BISYS Retirement Services

2008 Midwinter Tour: IRA Essentials
in Maryland on February 7, 2008
presented by BISYS Retirement Services

2008 Midwinter Tour: IRA Essentials
in Tennessee on February 7, 2008
presented by BISYS Retirement Services

2008 Midwinter Tour: IRA Essentials
in Oklahoma on February 12, 2008
presented by BISYS Retirement Services

2008 Midwinter Tour: IRA Essentials
in Pennsylvania on February 12, 2008
presented by BISYS Retirement Services

2008 Midwinter Tour: IRA Essentials
in Massachusetts on February 14, 2008
presented by BISYS Retirement Services

2008 Midwinter Tour: IRA Essentials
in Texas on February 14, 2008
presented by BISYS Retirement Services

2008 Midwinter Tour: IRA Essentials
in Wisconsin on February 26, 2008
presented by BISYS Retirement Services

2008 Midwinter Tour: IRA Essentials
in Wisconsin on February 28, 2008
presented by BISYS Retirement Services

2008 Web/Telephone Seminar: Amending & Restating QPs for EGTRRA
Nationwide on February 21, 2008
presented by BISYS Retirement Services

2008 Web/Telephone Seminar: Conducting Your Own Compliance Audit
Nationwide on February 19, 2008
presented by BISYS Retirement Services

2008 Web/Telephone Seminar: Individual(k) Plans
Nationwide on February 21, 2008
presented by BISYS Retirement Services

2008 Web/Telephone Seminar: IRA Beneficiary Distributions
Nationwide on February 5, 2008
presented by BISYS Retirement Services

2008 Web/Telephone Seminar: IRA Frontline Fundamentals - Part 1
Nationwide on February 12, 2008
presented by BISYS Retirement Services

2008 Web/Telephone Seminar: IRA Frontline Fundamentals -Part 2
Nationwide on February 14, 2008
presented by BISYS Retirement Services

2008 Web/Telephone Seminar: Retirement Distribution and Income Planning
Nationwide on February 26, 2008
presented by BISYS Retirement Services

2008 Web/Telephone Seminar: SEP Plans
Nationwide on February 28, 2008
presented by BISYS Retirement Services

2008 Web/Telephone Seminar: Withholding
Nationwide on February 7, 2008
presented by BISYS Retirement Services

401(k) Plans
in Washington on March 25, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

401(k) Plans
in Oregon on April 8, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

401(k) Plans
in New York on April 15, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

401(k) Plans
in Illinois on April 22, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

401(k) Plans
in Minnesota on May 6, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

401(k) Plans
in Ohio on May 13, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

401(k) Plans
in California on May 20, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

401(k) Plans
in Georgia on June 3, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

A New Way to Save Money on Healthcare While Helping Employees; Local Pharmacists Partner with Employers to Coach Patients with Chronic Diseases
in Maryland on February 14, 2008
presented by Worldwide Employee Benefits Network (WEB) - Baltimore Chapter

Cafeteria Plans
in Washington on March 26, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

Cafeteria Plans
in Oregon on April 9, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

Cafeteria Plans
in New York on April 16, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

Cafeteria Plans
in Illinois on April 23, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

Cafeteria Plans
in Minnesota on May 7, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

Cafeteria Plans
in Ohio on May 14, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

Cafeteria Plans
in California on May 21, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

Cafeteria Plans
in Georgia on June 4, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

COBRA Compliance for Group Health Plans
in Washington on March 28, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

COBRA Compliance for Group Health Plans
in Oregon on April 11, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

COBRA Compliance for Group Health Plans
in New York on April 18, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

COBRA Compliance for Group Health Plans
in Illinois on April 25, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

COBRA Compliance for Group Health Plans
in Minnesota on May 9, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

COBRA Compliance for Group Health Plans
in Ohio on May 16, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

COBRA Compliance for Group Health Plans
in California on May 23, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

COBRA Compliance for Group Health Plans
in Georgia on June 6, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

Employee Benefit Considerations in Domestic Relations Matters: QDROs and QMCSOs
Nationwide on February 14, 2008
presented by ABA Joint Committee on Employee Benefits

ERISA Compliance for Health & Welfare Plans
in Washington on March 27, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

ERISA Compliance for Health & Welfare Plans
in Oregon on April 10, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

ERISA Compliance for Health & Welfare Plans
in New York on April 17, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

ERISA Compliance for Health & Welfare Plans
in Illinois on April 24, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

ERISA Compliance for Health & Welfare Plans
in Minnesota on May 8, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

ERISA Compliance for Health & Welfare Plans
in Ohio on May 15, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

ERISA Compliance for Health & Welfare Plans
in California on May 22, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

ERISA Compliance for Health & Welfare Plans
in Georgia on June 5, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

HIPAA Portability, Privacy & Security
in Washington on March 28, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

HIPAA Portability, Privacy & Security
in Oregon on April 11, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

HIPAA Portability, Privacy & Security
in New York on April 18, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

HIPAA Portability, Privacy & Security
in Illinois on April 25, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

HIPAA Portability, Privacy & Security
in Minnesota on May 9, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

HIPAA Portability, Privacy & Security
in Ohio on May 16, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

HIPAA Portability, Privacy & Security
in California on May 23, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

HIPAA Portability, Privacy & Security
in Georgia on June 6, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

HSAs, HRAs, and Consumer-Driven Health Care
in Washington on March 27, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

HSAs, HRAs, and Consumer-Driven Health Care
in Oregon on April 10, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

HSAs, HRAs, and Consumer-Driven Health Care
in New York on April 17, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

HSAs, HRAs, and Consumer-Driven Health Care
in Illinois on April 24, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

HSAs, HRAs, and Consumer-Driven Health Care
in Minnesota on May 8, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

HSAs, HRAs, and Consumer-Driven Health Care
in Ohio on May 15, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

HSAs, HRAs, and Consumer-Driven Health Care
in California on May 22, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

HSAs, HRAs, and Consumer-Driven Health Care
in Georgia on June 5, 2008
presented by Employee Benefits Institute of America (EBIA)/Thomson Tax & Accounting

Leveraging Data Analytics to Benchmark and Improve Health Plan Performance
in Illinois on February 28, 2008
presented by WEB - Chicago West


Newly Posted Press Releases
(Post Yours!)

MassMutual Retirement Services Adopts Enhanced Regional Model
MassMutual

InFRE Issues Call for Retirement Related Research Papers
International Foundation for Retirement Education (InFRE)

New Web-Product Connects Pension & 401k Plan Auditors with Plan Sponsors
Venture (k) Corp.

Biophysical Unveils BiophysicalCheck Health Assessment Program to aid in Pre-Symptomatic Detection of Disease
Biophysical Corporation


We're one of the top 350 employment sites on the web!Newly Posted or Renewed Job Openings
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Retirement Sales Wholesaler - Inside Sales
for ExpertPlan, Inc.
in NJ

401(k) Plan Administrator
for Northeast Planning Services, Inc.
in MA

Compensation & Benefits Senior Manager
for Deloitte Tax, LLP
in DC, VA

Compliance Specialist
for Merrill Lynch
in NJ

Sr. Retirement Analyst
for Navy Federal Credit Union
in DC, VA

Relationship Manager I
for Citi
in FL

Relationship Manager II
for Citi
in FL

Lead Benefit Systems Analyst
for Citi
in FL

CRTNJ - Account Manager - AMT
for Citi
in ME

Employee Benefits Associate Attorney
for Gray Plant Mooty
in MN

Defined Benefits Operations Manager
for Hewitt Associates
in NJ

Actuarial Consultant
for MassMutual Financial Group
in MA

Retirement Plan Administrator
for Fringe Benefits Design
in MN

Actuary-50015626
for MassMutual Financial Group
in CT

Account Manager, Employee Benefits
for ABD Insurance and Financial Services
in CA

Licensing and Commissions Administrator
for Transamerica Retirement Services
in CA

401(k) Relationship Manager
for A.G. Edwards/Wachovia Securities
in IL, KS, MI, MO, TX

Senior Manager - Executive Compensation Consulting
for Deloitte Consulting LLP
in TX

Employee Benefits Opportunity
for Cincinnati Law Firm
in OH

Actuarial Consultant
for MassMutual Financial Group
in CT

Retirement Income Actuary
for MassMutual Financial Group
in CT

Participant Communication Consultant
for Vanguard
in PA

Defined Benefits Professional
for Vanguard
in PA

401(k) Client Relationship Specialist
for Matthews Benefit Group, Inc
in FL

Director, Plan Services
for Diversified Investment Advisors
in NY

Pension Recordkeeper
for Northern NJ Pension Consulting Firm
in NJ




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