Health & Welfare Plans

To BenefitsLink home page Fill your job openings fast on!
Search Earlier Newsletters:

Sort by date
Sort by closest match

November 5, 2008

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

Today's sponsor is

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

Q: Where can you find high quality Cafeteria, HRA, POP and now Section 132 plan documents?


Our Welfare plan document software is easy to learn, easy to use and affordable! The software includes SPDs, corporate resolutions, participant forms, updates, amendments, error correction and more! Get all four of these documents and unlimited use for only $775/year or $175/plan.

For details, call 800.596.0714 for details or email

[Guidance Overview] Mental Health Parity Requirements as Found in the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act
Excerpt: "Rules regarding enforcement and penalties for noncompliance have not been changed. Participants, beneficiaries, and the Department of Labor may still file civil actions under ERISA to enforce the parity requirements; the IRS can impose excise taxes for noncompliance as well." (Dorsey & Whitney LLP)

Some Industries Look for Silver Lining in Stimulus Package, Health and Energy Shifts
Excerpt: "The prospect of universal health care -- or in the shorter term, an expansion of children's health care and changes in Medicare and Medicaid purchasing -- will create new winners and losers. Democratic lawmakers have made it clear that payments to private insurers for Medicare plans are a big bull's eye in any health-care overhaul. Currently, private insurers receive more per beneficiary than the government would spend if it covered people directly. But insurers could benefit from a health-system overhaul. Aetna Inc.'s chief executive, Ron Williams, supports requiring people to buy health insurance. Some of Aetna's rivals oppose that position, but Mr. Williams says that without such a requirement, healthy people would opt out of the collective insurance risk pool and costs would spiral." (The Wall Street Journal)

Hypertext List of Documents Pertaining to the San Francisco 'Pay or Play' Healthcare Ordinance
The Web site provides a history with links to pertinent documents on the San Francisco health care ordinance. (Golden Gate Restaurant Association)

Nearly All State and Local Government Workers Have Access to Employer-Based Health Insurance at Varied Rates
Excerpt: "In 2006, practically all (99.9%) state and local government workers had access to health insurance from their employer; and 65.5% of the total work force was enrolled, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) reported in Statistical Brief #223, Employer-Sponsored Health Insurance for State and Local Governments, by Census Division, 2006." (Wolters Kluwer)

Day Care Becomes a Deal-Breaker for Two-Career Couples
Excerpt: "More two-career couples with kids admit that they have walked away from job offers because of the lack of onsite day care, reveals a survey by Bright Horizons Family Solutions. One in four working couples who have children enrolled in a company-sponsored day care center report that employer-sponsored child care played a key role in not pursuing certain career opportunities." (Employee Benefit News; free registration required)

Survey Gauges Health Care Experts' Views on Payment System Overhaul
Excerpt: "'Health Care Opinion Leaders' Views on Payment System Reform,' Commonwealth Fund/Modern Healthcare Health Care Opinion Leaders: More than two-thirds of experts surveyed on health care payment system reform said that fee-for-service payment is not effective in promoting high-quality, efficient care. According to the survey, there is strong support for a bundled payment approach, which would provide a single payment for all the items and services received during a period or episode of care." (Kaiser Family Foundation)

[Opinion] DOL Amicus Brief in GGRA v. City and County of San Francisco (PDF)
27 pages. (U.S. Department of Labor via American Benefits Council)

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

[Official Guidance] Text of Final IRS Regs: Information Reporting on Employer-Owned Life Insurance Contracts (PDF)
8 pages. Excerpt: "Effective Date: These regulations are effective on November 6, 2008. Applicability Date: These regulations are applicable for tax years ending after November 6, 2008. . . . [O]n January 24, 2008, the IRS released Form 8925, 'Report of Employer-Owned Life Insurance Contracts,' for taxpayers to use to comply with the reporting requirements . . . . [T]his Treasury decision adopts the proposed regulations without substantive change and removes the corresponding temporary regulations." (Internal Revenue Service)

[Guidance Overview] Employment Law Risks in the Current Financial Crisis
Excerpt: "The current economic crisis may lead employers to consider reductions in force. Employers that are considering reductions in force and providing severance payments to laid-off employees may wish to consider establishing a severance plan governed by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA). One advantage in having an ERISA-governed severance plan is that it provides many protections to employers who are sued by employees in connection with severance benefits." (Littler Mendelson P.C.)

Sample of TARP/Executive Compensation Agreement
Excerpt: "The Letter Agreement contains this language: 'In addition, the Company is required to review its Benefit Plans to ensure that they do not encourage senior executive officers to take unnecessary and excessive risks that threaten the value of the Company. To the extent any such review requires revisions to any Benefit Plan with respect to you, you and the Company agree to negotiate such changes promptly and in good faith.' All of this is agreed to 'in consideration of the benefits' that the executive will receive as a result of the Company's participation in the government's Capital Purchase Program." (Attorney B. Janell Grenier via

Newly Posted Events
(Post Yours!)

Accounting Basics for Employee Benefit Lawyers
Nationwide on December 4, 2008
presented by ABA Joint Committee on Employee Benefits

Aon Consulting’s 2008 Replacement Ratio Study™
in Colorado on November 11, 2008
presented by Western Pension and Benefits Conference Denver Chapter

Same-Sex Marriages: Overcoming Policy, Benefit, Payroll Challenges
in California on November 24, 2008
presented by

What’s Happening in Washington? A Legislative Update on Benefit Plans
in Georgia on November 20, 2008
presented by WEB (Worldwide Employee Benefit Network) Atlanta Chapter

Newly Posted Press Releases
(Post Yours!)

Dobrow New ASPPA President, Four Seated on ASPPA Board of Directors
American Society of Pension Professionals & Actuaries (ASPPA)

No License Fees For BLAZE SSI Employee Benefit Software

We're one of the top 350 employment sites on the web!Newly Posted or Renewed Job Openings
(Post a Job | View All Jobs | RSS feed for jobs RSS Feed )

Health and Welfare Professionals
for Towers Perrin
in DC, NJ, NY, PA

Senior Pension Specialist
for Chemtura Corporation
in CT

401k Sales Person
for Katz Zlotnick Associates, Inc.
in NY

Sr. Retirement Annuity Business Analyst
for Pacific Life Insurance Company, Newport Beach, CA
in CA

Education Specialist
for Kibble & Prentice, A USI COMPANY
in WA

Health & Welfare Consulting Actuary ( min. 8 yrs experience)
for Milliman, Inc. (New York City office)
in NY

Health & Welfare Consulting Actuary (12 -15 years experience)
for Milliman, Inc. (New York City office)
in NY

Senior Retirement Plan Analyst and Supervisor
for Mid Size New York City TPA
in NY

Vice President, Consultative New Logo Sales
for Buck Consultants
in CA, NJ, NY, PA, TX

Handy Links:

Subscribe to the BenefitsLink Retirement Plans Newsletter, Too!

Sign-up form is at (free).

This newsletter is sent to you each workday except federal holidays.

This email has been published by:, Inc.
1298 Minnesota Avenue, Suite H
Winter Park FL 32789
(407) 644-4146
Fax: (407) 644-2151

David Rhett Baker, J.D., Editor

Copyright 2008, Inc.; except that you can forward this email in full (including this boilerplate part) or otherwise reprint this email in full (including this boilerplate part) without obtaining our permission.

Anyone can receive these emails; just have them sign up at this web page:

Other useful links: