IRS Releases Final 162(m) Regulations Implementing Statutory Changes

On December 18, 2020, the IRS released final regulations under 162(m) of the IRS Code to implement the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) changes as well as provide guidance to employers. Section 162(m) focuses on publicly held corporations and deductions for compensation paid to covered employees. This section does not allow these corporations to deduct compensation that exceeds $1 million per year. The TCJA changes the Read More

Overview of Benefits Provisions in New COVID-19 Bill

The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 (CAA) was signed into law on December 27, 2020. This major funding bill included the COVID-Related Tax Relief Act of 2020 and the Taxpayer Certainty and Disaster Tax Relief Act of 2020. Following are highlights of the provisions affecting employer-sponsored benefit plans: Flexible Spending Arrangements (FSAs) The CAA allows for certain relief pursuant to health care and Read More

DOL Adopts New Prohibited Transaction Exemption for Fiduciaries Providing Investment Advice

On December 18, 2020, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) published the final version of its new prohibited transaction class exemption for investment professionals: Prohibited Transaction Exemption 2020-02, Improving Investment Advice for Workers and Retirees.  The new class exemption is based on the DOL’s temporary policy adopted after a 2018 ruling by the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals in Chamber of Commerce of Read More

Pay Equity is a Key Issue for Employers to Watch in 2021

With a new administration and Congress in place, there will undoubtedly be some significant changes to employment laws, and pay equity is likely to be key issue for employers to watch in 2021 and beyond. During his campaign, President Biden indicated his support of the Paycheck Fairness Act (H.R.7) as the next step in building upon a pay equity law passed by the Obama-Biden administration, the Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Read More

DOL Issues COVID-19-Related Guidance Regarding Whether Overtime Payments Based on Expected Hours Worked are Credited for Overtime

In Opinion Letter FLSA2020-20, the Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division (WHD) provided guidance on paying overtime to live-in caregivers who work shifts of more than 24 hours based on an expected number of hours worked, and whether these overtime payments can be excluded from the regular rate and credited for overtime. The employer addressed in the Opinion Letter employs caregivers to provide in-home or Read More

DOL Issues Guidance Addressing Whether Certain Telework-Related Travel is Compensable

In Opinion Letter FLSA2020-19, the Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division (WHD) provided guidance on whether an employee who works remotely for part of the day and works at the office for the remainder of the day while doing personal tasks in between must receive compensation for travel time between home and office. There were two examples provided in the Opinion Letter: #1: Employee has a school Read More

Doing the Math: Partial Plan Terminations and the Consolidated Appropriations Act

  The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021, signed into law on December 27, 2020 (the “Act”), changes a myriad of different rules for employer-sponsored retirement plans and health and welfare benefits. Among the more significant of the Act’s changes is a temporary rule to provide relief for certain events related to COVID-19 that would otherwise be considered partial retirement plan terminations (which can Read More

DOL Provides Guidance Regarding Electronic Posting Of Mandatory Notices

In response to the widespread shift to remote workforces due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Department of Labor (DOL) has issued guidance to clarify how employers can comply with federal laws requiring the display of certain notices in the workplace that inform employees about their rights under federal employment law. Field Assistance Bulletin No. 2020-7 was issued on December 29, 2020, to give guidance on Read More

DOL Provides Guidance Regarding Telemedicine for Purposes of Establishing FMLA Entitlement

On December 29, 2020, the Department of Labor (DOL) issued guidance stating that a telemedicine visit with a health care provider to verify an employee’s serious health condition can be used to support FMLA leave. Under the FMLA, one avenue for an employee to prove a serious health condition is to visit a health care provider in person. Under the FMLA a “serious health condition” is an “illness, injury, Read More

EEOC Provides Guidance on COVID-19 Vaccine

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has updated its “What You Should Know About COVID-19 and the ADA, the Rehabilitation Act, and Other EEO Laws” web page with a new Q&A section about COVID-19 vaccinations for employees. The new section addresses how employers that require vaccinations for workers should respond to any employee unwilling to receive a vaccination because of a disability or sincerely Read More