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November 29, 2011 Get Retirement News  |  Advertise  |  Unsubscribe  |  Past Issues  |  Search

Employee Benefits Jobs

Senior Actuarial Analyst
for Diversified in MA

Director, Actuarial - Financial Modeling, Annuities
for Prudential in NJ

VP, Service Delivery-Defined Benefits/Pension
for ACS, A Xerox Company in NJ, NY, PA

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Webcasts and Conferences

Corporate Benefits Summit
in Nevada on January 23, 2012 presented by marcus evans

Form 5500 Reporting Update
Nationwide on December 12, 2011 presented by Lorman Education Services

Participant Disclosure Webcast
Nationwide on December 6, 2011 presented by McKay Hochman Co., Inc.

Same-Gender Marriage Rulings: Impacts on Employee Benefit Plans Across the Nation
Nationwide on December 19, 2011 presented by Lorman Education Services

SunGard's Advanced Pension Conference - Orlando 2012
in Florida on February 15, 2012 presented by SunGard Relius

SunGard's Just for ERPAs Workshop
in Florida on February 14, 2012 presented by SunGard Relius

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[Guidance Overview]
Significant Changes to San Francisco Health Care Security Ordinance Require Immediate Employer Action (PDF)
"In particular, the revised Ordinance imposes detailed design and administrative requirements on accounts established to satisfy the employer healthcare expenditure requirement. Because these new requirements directly relate to the operation of such accounts, there is a strong likelihood that the requirements will reopen the long-simmering debate about whether [ERISA] preempts some or all of the revised Ordinance." (Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP)

Advanced Education for all Taft-Hartley Trustees & Administrators   [Advert.]

Sponsored by Financial Research Associates

In a significantly changed investment climate, and with healthcare reform on the horizon, you canít afford to miss hearing from the best minds in the business about the key strategies youíll need to best manage your benefits in 2012 and beyond.

New CMS Estimates of State-by-State Health Expenditures
"At Noon ET on Wednesday Dec. 7, the Kaiser Family Foundation will hold a live interactive webcast to discuss trends in state health care expenditures and the implications for national and state efforts to constrain health care costs." (The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation)

Managing Pharmacy Benefits
"Complex pharma.ceutical issues require HR leaders to take a multi-faceted approach to strategic plan designs that balance employee needs with financial prudence. Education and communication to ensure employees understand the impact of their pharmacy choices are also crucial." (Human Resource Executive Online)

Feds Reject Two States' Health Waiver Requests
"The Department of Health and Human Services said Indiana and Louisiana do not need an adjustment from the health law's medical loss ratio." (Governing)

Group Health Care Premiums Still Rising, But at Slower Rate, According to Survey
"The [Council of Insurance Agents and Brokers'] November Employee Benefits Market Survey, which queried CIAB members about their clients' premium increases, found that small groups with 50 or fewer employees saw the largest increases, with 39% averaging rises of 11% to 20%." (Business Insurance)

Tricky Issues Surround Supreme Court's Health Law Review
"Should the arguments heard by the high court regarding the health law be televised on C-SPAN? And should certain justices step away from the case? These are among the key questions that continue to buzz around the health law's day in court." (The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation)

Is Telecommuting Better for Your Health?
"The cost of commuting — in terms of gas, time, carbon emissions and any other number of measures — is high. But does commuting also take a toll on your health? A recent Swedish study, which tracked 12,000 workers and evaluated their work commutes and overall health, concludes that is does." (CBS Interactive Inc.)

Blue Shield of California Opens California's First Retail Store
"At the store, which is staffed by one nurse and several 'brand ambassadors,' members can have policy questions answered, and both members and prospective ones can get information about all of the insurer's products." (AISHealth)

Video: How Can We Address Long-Term Care without CLASS?
"Richard Johnson talks us through ways [CLASS] could be revitalized, new policies that could boost participation in the private market, and public-private options that could help achieve higher rates of coverage." (Urban Institute)

Walmart Cuts Health Benefits, But Seeks to Launch Primary Health Services
"[Walmart's] request for information asks potential partners for expertise in managing and monitoring patients with chronic, costly health conditions, according to NPR, with the modest goal of becoming 'the largest provider of primary health care services in the nation.'" (Employee Benefit Adviser; free registration required)

Should Legislation Protect the Obese in the Workplace?
Read the discussion: "Should it be illegal for businesses to discriminate against applicants who are obese, typically defined as 20 percent above the range of normal body weight or higher? Or is stronger legislation to protect against this type of bias the only answer?" (The New York Times; free registration required)

Benefits in General; Executive Compensation

[Guidance Overview]
Favorable IRS Ruling on Tax Deductions for Bonus Pool Arrangements
"Many employers in the financial services industry and elsewhere create bonus pools for high-performing employees. However, the allocation of the individual bonuses is often not known prior to the end of the taxable year to which the bonus relates. The amount may not be known because, under the bonus plan, an employee has to be employed on the payment date or because the plan may give some discretion about making individual allocations." (McGuireWoods LLP)

[Guidance Overview]
New Jersey Mandates Employers 'Conspicuously Post' Notice of Obligation to Maintain Records on Wages, Benefits and Taxes
"Employers who fail to comply with these regulations could be found guilty of a disorderly persons offense and be subject to financial penalties anywhere between $100 and $1,000. In addition, the law prohibits employers from discharging or otherwise retaliating against any employee who complains or inquires about possible violations of any state wage, benefit, or tax law or institutes any action related to any such law." (Pepper Hamilton LLP)

IRS May Propose New Section 457(f) Vesting, Other Rules in Mid-2012
"No firm deadline exists, but an IRS attorney's recent statements indicate that the agency's current goal is to publish proposals by June 30, 2012." (Mercer LLC)

Are Tribal Benefit Plans 'Governmental'? Comments on Proposed IRS Standards
"Sovereignty is the overriding issue. There is nothing 'wrong' with Tribes maintaining a single plan that covers both commercial and governmental employees. It is just that the entire plan is then subject to all tax and ERISA requirements, respecting the 'governmental' employees as well as the 'commercial' employees. Balancing impact on Tribal sovereignty against the costs of complying with the proposed regulation will be the ultimate decision for Tribal leadership." (SNR Denton)

Five Most Unusual Benefits and Perks
"Ingenuity in business is all about separating from the pack. View some of the more unique ways companies stand out when attracting and retaining top talent." (Employee Benefit News)

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Lois Baker, J.D., President
Holly Horton, Business Manager

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