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September 12, 2008

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


Today's sponsor is BeneCom Associates, LLC

(Click on company name or banner to learn more.)
Banner ad for BeneCom Associates, LLC

Benefits are expensive. Communicating them doesnít have to be.

The high cost of benefits concerns everyone, employers, employees -- and us. Thatís why BeneCom believes itís vital to keep benefit communication costs as low as possible. Consequently, we donít charge hourly fees, we competitively bid all aspects of a project among our nation-wide network of media vendors, aggressively negotiate fees with those vendors, pass production savings on to clients and, finally, guarantee our pricing. As a result, many clients tell us our charges are up to 30% lower than those of their previous vendors.

Visit us. See how our biggest impact is on your benefits, not your budget.


Your Opinions Are Desired on International and Cross-Border Retirement and Fringe Benefit Plans; IRS Advisory Committee Survey Seeks Opinions of Employers, Administrators, Practitioners, Consultants
2-page Word survey questionnaire; September 30 deadline. Excerpt: "The IRS Advisory Committee on Tax Exempt and Government Entities (TE/GE) (the 'ACT') is undertaking a study to identify international and cross-border activities, issues, challenges, impediments and barriers in connection with the design, coverage, portability, and tax administration of US employee retirement (qualified and non-qualified) and fringe benefit plans. . . [T]he ACT is particularly interested in the views of stakeholders, such as employers, administrators, trustees, custodians, practitioners and consultants regarding these issues [and asks for your views on or before September 30, 2008]." (IRS Advisory Committee on Tax Exempt and Government Entities)


[Guidance Overview] Are Work-Life Programs a Boon for the Bottom-Line?
Excerpt: "While programs offering work-life flexibility for employees have been a staple of public accounting firms' recruiting and retention efforts, other companies could learn from their example -- and not just to shore up their staff. The bottom line may benefit, too." (CFO.com)


[Guidance Overview] In Important 11th Circuit Case After the Glenn Decision, Heightened Arbitrary and Capricious Review Is Questioned
Excerpt: "This recent unpublished 11th Circuit opinion presents interesting comment, post-Glenn, on the appropriate standard of review in a benefits denial case. At issue was the plan administrator's reduction of benefits under a long-term-disability plan based on a participant's receipt of Social Security disability benefits." (Attorney Roy F Harmon III in the Health Plan Law blog)

U.S. Treasury Department and U.S. Small Business Administration Partner to Help Small Businesses: HSA.gov
Excerpt from press release: 'The new website, www.hsa.gov, presents the advantages of HSAs, provides comparisons to other health coverage options, and has other materials to help employers and individuals determine whether and how to enroll in HSA-eligible coverage and how to save for health care costs through an HSA." (U.S. Treasury Department)


Fundamentals of Insurance: Implications for Health Coverage (PDF)
8 pages. Excerpt: "As state and federal policymakers renew their efforts to increase health coverage among the uninsured, a major issue is what exactly that coverage should be. . . . A discussion of key insurance principles can provide insight into these questions and the trade-offs that solutions may require." (American Academy of Actuaries)


Health Care Issue, Not Quite Hot, Remains Strong in Presidential Matchup
Excerpt: "Polls show not that concern about health care has faded significantly, only that the foreboding about energy and the economy has blitzed past it. Some analysts of health care politics argue that because Democrats are more associated with the issue, any de-emphasis may help Republicans. They warn, however, that candidates ignore health care at their own peril." (New York Times)



Sponsored by: ALM

(Click on company name or banner to learn more.)
Banner ad for ALM

Complete Benefits Law Guidance from Law Journal Press

The nation's workforce and health care system are constantly evolving and so are the legal issues. Law Journal Press helps you handle any benefits law question with up-to-date, authoritative books on all aspects of the field. Get legal and practical advice from leading experts on everything from COBRA to ERISA, "contingent" employees to family and medical leave, and more. Browse our product listings for detailed information and special offers.

(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

Apple Settles Shareholder Suits Over Stock Option Backdating
Excerpt: "A federal judge in San Jose has given preliminary approval to a $14 million settlement of shareholder claims over backdating of stock options against current and former Apple Inc executives, court documents showed." (Reuters via New York Times)


2007 Stats for IRA Assets and Contributions; Facts and Background on Domestic Partner Benefits
Excerpt: "IRAs are the largest repository of U.S. retirement wealth . . . . [and this Issue Brief] updates previous research by EBRI providing information on why employers offer domestic partner health benefits, legal issues involved, recent developments, and current data." (Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI))


Early Retirement? Why It Pays to Stay
Excerpt: "Companies across a range of industries, from financial services to retail, have been extending early-retirement packages in an effort to slash work forces." (CNNMoney.com)



Newly Posted Events
(Post Yours!)

How to Do a Dependent Audit (60-Minute Power Series)
Nationwide on September 23, 2008
presented by International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans

Care Management Measurement: Beyond ROI Webcast
Nationwide on September 25, 2008
presented by International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans

QDROs, Rollovers and Working Retirement
Nationwide on October 15, 2008
presented by Qualified Pension Consulting, Inc.

Determination Letter Applications: A Practical Approach
Nationwide on September 30, 2008
presented by Qualified Pension Consulting, Inc.

Determination Letter Applications: A Practical Approach
Nationwide on September 24, 2008
presented by Qualified Pension Consulting, Inc.

New DOL Fee Disclosures Rules For Service Providers
in District of Columbia on September 24, 2008
presented by WEB (Worldwide Employee Benefits Network) Washington Chapter

National ERISA Fiduciary ExecuSummit
in New York on November 4, 2008
presented by ExecuSummit



Newly Posted Press Releases
(Post Yours!)

Treasury, SBA Partner to Help Small Businesses Understand the Value of Health Savings Accounts
U.S. Department of Treasury



We're one of the top 350 employment sites on the web!Newly Posted or Renewed Job Openings
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Business Analyst-SPGA Installation
for Transamerica Retirement Services
in CA

Data Analyst - Defined Benefits
for Vanguard
in PA

Senior Care Management Consultant
for Towers Perrin
in IL, NY

Benefit Administrator
for Vanguard
in PA

Pension Consultants/Administrators
for Northern & Central NJ Mid-Size Pension Consulting Firm
in NJ

Pension Consultant & Daily Valuation Administrator
for M.L.Kerns & Associates, L.L.C.
in TX


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