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Health & Welfare Plans Newsletter

March 19, 2010

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HIPAA covered entities, including health plans, health care clearinghouses, and covered health care providers, must comply with the HIPAA Security Rule. This regulation also requires compliance from business associates. Covered entities must create and document compliance with a HIPAA Security manual. This course will outline the security rules, safeguards and what is required for the manual.

'Cadillac' Insurance Plans Explained
Excerpt: "The Democrats final health bill negotiated by the House, Senate and White House and released [March 18, 2010] contains a scaled-back tax on high-cost insurance policies. Here is a brief guide to these types of insurance plans."
(Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation)

COBRA Subsidy Information Will Highlight COBRA Continuation of Coverage Survey; Participation Requested
Excerpt: "Spencer's Benefits Reports is now collecting information for its 2010 COBRA Health Care Continuation of Coverage Survey. Survey forms are available online (visit to complete the survey)."
(Wolters Kluwer)

The World Congress 7th Annual World Health Care Congress | April 12 - 14, 2010 | Washington, DC
The MUST attend event for health care government and corporate leaders to formulate business strategies in a new era of reform and market competition!
Sponsored by World Congress

Executive Compensation; Benefits in General

[Guidance Overview]
FICA Tax on Severance Payments Questioned
Excerpt: "Certain severance benefits may not be subject to taxation under the Federal Insurance Contributions Act (FICA), according to a recent district court decision. In United States v. Quality Stores, Inc., No. 1:09-cv-44 (W.D. Mich. Feb. 23, 2010), a decision affirming a bankrup.tcy court decision, the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Michigan highlighted the historical uncertainty regarding whether certain severance payments made to employees are subject to taxation under FICA. In this episode, the court held that such payments were not subject to FICA, as they did not constitute 'wages.'"
(McGuireWoods LLP)

[Guidance Overview]
Independent Contractors Not Protected by ADEA When Terminated
Excerpt: "A company was not in violation of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) when it dismissed an independent contractor and replaced her with a younger employee, the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in Ernster v. Luxco, Inc. (No. 09-1200). The issue in the case involved whether Barbara Ernster was an independent contractor or an employee, because the ADEA and the Iowa Civil Rights Act (ICRA) 'protects employees but not independent contractors.'"
(Wolters Kluwer)

[Guidance Overview]
Voluntary Correction Program for § 409A Documentary Failures (PDF)
6 pages. Excerpt: "IRS Notice 2010-6, 2010-3 I.R.B. 275 (January 5, 2010), allows taxpayers to voluntarily correct many documentary failures under Internal Revenue Code § 409A. Previously, voluntary 409A corrections were available only for operational failures under Notice 2008-113."
(Charles C. Shulman, Esq.)

Responsible Federal Contracting: Report from the Middle Class Task Force
Excerpt: "In its first annual report, the Middle Class Task Force says it will push for stronger standards from federal contractors to make sure they offer proper wages and benefits, and comply with labor laws. Just how that will shake out remains to be seen, but HR executives at companies that depend on federal contracts had better start paying attention."
(Human Resource Executive Online)

Webcasts and Conferences

Employee Benefits Law Section Seminar
in Georgia on April 15, 2010
presented by Employee Benefits Law Section, State Bar of Georgia

Press Releases

Austin Firm Expands Into 401k Market
Richard P. Slaughter Associates

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Newly Posted Employee Benefits Jobs

Pension Administrator
for Actuaries Unlimited, Inc.
in CA

TotalSource District Manager
for ADP
in CA, IL, MD, NY, OH, TX, WI

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