Is Simultaneous Sponsorship of an FSA, HRA, and HSA Possible?

Employers struggling to offer the health and welfare benefits employees prefer may find that certain options do not mix well. In fact, employers may wonder if simultaneous sponsorship of an FSA, HRA, and HSA is possible or even preferable. The first and most important decision to make is whether it is possible to supplement health insurance with FSAs, HRAs, and HSAs under current laws. Publication 969, Health Savings Read More

Avoiding Fiduciary Liability in 2019: Steps 401(k) Fiduciaries Should Take Now

Plan fiduciaries, regardless of their title, are expected to perform their duties solely in the best interests of plan participants and their beneficiaries. In addition, plan fiduciaries are expected to act prudently. Failing to do so, and failing to comply with Department of Labor (DOL) fiduciary responsibilities, can lead to a fiduciary liability lawsuit. What follows are actionable suggestions on avoiding Read More

New Democrats in the House Address ACA Litigation and Three Other Policy Issues

The majority party in the United States House of Representatives (the “House”) generally sets the tone for the coming two-year Congressional session. In 2019, for the first time since 2010, the Democratic Party is the majority party. As such, they are responsible for proposing House Rules (the “Rules”) that determine how the House will operate. Among other issues, the new Rules address ACA litigation and three other Read More

Recent Updates to U.S. Equity Compensation FAQs

Institutional Shareholder Services (ISS) maintains a comprehensive list of U.S. Equity Compensation FAQs. On December 19, 2018, ISS issued updates to its FAQs based, in part, on recent changes to the Internal Revenue Code of 1984, as amended (the “Code”) and the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 (“TCJA”).   Effect of Section 162(m) Deduction Removal on Compensation Programs Removal of Section 162(m) of the Code Read More

Timing Your Company’s Nonqualified Deferred Compensation Plan

Companies provide different types of benefits to meet the interests and needs of their employees. One option to consider is a nonqualified deferred compensation (NQDC) plan. A NQDC allows employees to earn wages and other types of compensation over the course of one tax year then defer those earnings and income tax obligations to a later year. Common examples of deferred compensation plans are supplemental executive Read More

Cybersecurity Best Practices for Employee Benefit Plans

Employee benefit plans typically gather, use, and maintain confidential data about plan participants. Employers, plan sponsors, and fiduciaries must use cybersecurity best practices to protect this information. In this article, we will explore some cybersecurity techniques applicable to employee benefit plans. At this time, the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, as amended (“ERISA”) provides no clear Read More

Avoid HIPAA Noncompliance Penalties by Consulting ERISA Counsel

Noncompliance with government regulations can occur simply by lack of understanding the finer points of those regulations. For example, it’s simply impossible for a quick read of ERISA to give you all the information you need to avoid HIPAA noncompliance penalties. In this article, we will examine how consulting with ERISA counsel can give you the in-depth information you need.   Top HIPAA Noncompliance Read More

ERISA-Qualified Government Health Plans Under Attack by Plaintiff’s Bar

In recent years, we have seen challenges to the exemption for church-sponsored pension plans contained in the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA). A U.S. Supreme Court decision in 2017 (Advocate Health Care Network et al. v. Stapleton et al.) seemed to settle the argument that plans offered by church-affiliated hospitals still qualified for the exemption. However, it now appears that Read More

The Pros and Cons of Arbitrating ERISA Fiduciary Claims

Arbitration is an oft-used form of alternative dispute resolution. Two or more parties fail to resolve a disagreement, they may turn to arbitration. But is it better to litigate or arbitrate? The answer to this question depends on a number of factors. When it comes to arbitrating ERISA fiduciary claims, the situation becomes even more complex. Is arbitration the best solution? Are there any downsides to solving an Read More