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November 10, 2010

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[Official Guidance]
Text of EEOC Final Regulations under Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (PDF)
29 pages. Excerpt: "Congress enacted Title II of GINA to protect job applicants, current and former employees, labor union members, and apprentices and trainees from discrimination based on their genetic information."
(U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission)

[Official Guidance]
Background Information for EEOC Final Rule on Title II of Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008
Excerpt: "[This set of questions and answers is] intended to provide practical information about the most important requirements of Title II of GINA and the EEOC's regulations."
(U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission)

[Official Guidance]
Questions and Answers for Small Businesses: EEOC Final Rule on Title II of Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008
Excerpt: "Title II prohibits the use of genetic information in employment, restricts employers from requesting, requiring, or purchasing genetic information, and strictly limits the disclosure of genetic information."
(U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission)

50 Mil.lion Americans Uninsured, According to CDC Report:
Excerpt: "'According to a new report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 49.9 mil.lion people ages 18 to 64,' or about 26.2 percent of the adult population, 'had no medical coverage for at least part of the past 12 months."
(Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation)

New Waiver Requirements for Mini-Med Plan Sponsors
Excerpt: "Sponsors of 'mini-med' plans that receive waivers from federal regulators to allow them to temporarily continue to offer the arrangements face new reporting requirements."
(Business Insurance)

How Michigan Blue Cross Stifled Ford's Attempt to Control Health Costs
Excerpt: "As health care costs soared nationally, a small Michigan firm gave Ford Motor Co. a proposal to cut its physical therapy costs. The automaker signed up for an in-state pilot program, which was so successful Ford expanded it last year to cover about 390,000 employees, retirees and their families nationwide. Yet the cost-saving program created by Pontiac-based TheraMatrix has come under attack from Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan."
(USA TODAY)

New Health Rules Being Waived More Often
Excerpt: "As Obama administration officials put into place some of the new rules that go into effect under the federal health care law, they are issuing more waivers to try to prevent some insurers and employers from dropping coverage and also promising to modify other rules because many of the existing policies would not meet new standards."
(The New York Times; free registration required)

Some Companies Shift Health Costs to Better-Paid
Excerpt: "With health care costs climbing even higher during this enrollment season, more employers are adopting a tiered system to pass on the bulk of those costs to their employees by assigning bigger contributions to workers in top salary brackets and offering some relief to workers who make less money."
(The New York Times; free registration required)

Employee Perspectives on Health Care: The Affordability Gap
Excerpt: "As health care costs continue to rise, new Towers Watson survey results show that there is a growing affordability gap that could threaten employees' financial security. While few have taken more actions in the past two years to control these costs, many are becoming increasingly risk-averse."
(Towers Watson)

[Opinion]
New Congress, Same Challenges: What's Next for Health Care Policy?
Excerpt: "[The article highlights] what to expect for the remainder of 2010 and explain the strategies that Republicans may use in the coming years as they work to mold healthcare reform to their liking."
(Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP)




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Our subscribers care about employee benefit plan compliance, administration, costs and design. Roles include in-house benefits directors and administrators, TPAs, consultants, attorneys, trust officers, auditors and investment managers.

Call Mary Hall for details at 262-797-6380, or reach her at maryhall@benefitslink.com


Benefits in General; Executive Compensation

[Official Guidance]
IRS Revenue Ruling 2010-27: Addressing Qualifying 'Unforeseeable Emergencies' for Distributions (PDF)
Excerpt: "The revenue ruling provides guidance, in the form of examples, on what constitutes an unforeseeable emergency distribution under section 457(b) of the Code and section 1.457-6(c) of the regulations. The revenue ruling also applies the same standards to distributions from a nonqualified deferred compensation plan subject to section 409A."
(U.S. Internal Revenue Service via American Benefits Council)

[Guidance Overview]
Section 409A Compliance: Deadline for Taking Advantage of Correction Program Is December 31, 2010
Excerpt: "Companies should review all of their non-qualified deferred compensation arrangements to ensure that they comply with Section 409A and, if they do not comply, act now to take advantage of the Notice 2010-6 document correction program, as the relief available under Notice 2010-6 expires at the end of this year."
(Mintz, Levin, Cohn, Ferris, Glovsky and Popeo, P.C.)

[Guidance Overview]
Retirement Plan Status Affecting Options: No ERISA Claim
Excerpt: "Specifically, the Second Circuit rejected a former employee's argument that it was an ERISA breach of fiduciary duty for a stock plan administrator to assure the former employee that she could exercise her options following retirement under an ERISA-covered retirement plan."
(Utz, Miller & Eickman, LLC)


Webcasts and Conferences

ASPPA EduCast: Cash Balance Plan Basics
Nationwide on December 2, 2010
presented by ASPPA (American Society of Pension Professionals & Actuaries)

ASPPA Webcast: Did You Survive the 2009 5500 Process?
Nationwide on December 16, 2010
presented by ASPPA (American Society of Pension Professionals & Actuaries)

ASPPA Webcast: Engagement Letters Under Final DOL Fee Disclosure Regulations
Nationwide on December 14, 2010
presented by ASPPA (American Society of Pension Professionals & Actuaries)

ASPPA Webcast: Hybrid Retirement Plans Regulations - New Final and Proposed Rules
Nationwide on November 11, 2010
presented by ASPPA (American Society of Pension Professionals & Actuaries)

ASPPA Webcast: Participant Fee Disclosure What You Need to Know Under the Final Rules
Nationwide on November 18, 2010
presented by ASPPA (American Society of Pension Professionals & Actuaries)

ASPPA Webcast: Redefining Fiduciary Status Under DOL Proposed Regulations
Nationwide on December 10, 2010
presented by ASPPA (American Society of Pension Professionals & Actuaries)

ASPPA Webcast: Small Business Jobs Act: Roth Opportunities and Challenges
Nationwide on December 7, 2010
presented by ASPPA (American Society of Pension Professionals & Actuaries)

Los Angeles Benefits Conference
in California on January 12, 2011
presented by ASPPA (American Society of Pension Professionals & Actuaries)

The ASPPA 401(k) SUMMIT
in Nevada on March 6, 2011
presented by ASPPA (American Society of Pension Professionals & Actuaries)


Press Releases

Virginia Woman Sentenced to Prison and Ordered to Repay Approximately $57,000 in Restitution to Plan Participants
U.S. Department of Labor, Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA)


Newly Posted Employee Benefits Jobs

Account Manager
for BenefitMD
in WA

Retirement Plan Specialist
for Pension and Retirement Services
in MO

Qualified Plan Salesperson/Consultant
for Independent Employee Benefits Consulting Firm
in NC

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

Pension Administrator
for Cornerstone Group
in ANY STATE

Project Manager, Defined Contributions
for The Newport Group
in NC




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