Complying with FICA’s Special Timing Rule

Taxes collected under Federal Insurance Contributions Act (FICA) are levied on wages paid by an employer to an employee regarding their employment. Collecting the tax on basic wages is fairly simple. However, nonqualified deferred compensation plans present special problems for compliance with the law, especially considering FICA’s special timing rule.   What Is the Special Timing Rule? The Internal Revenue Read More

Pros and Cons for Offering a Restricted Stock Program

At Hall Benefits Law, we help employers develop effective executive compensation plans and the subject of adding a restricted stock program may arise. When deciding upon how to attract, retain and motivate your employees through your executive compensation program, it’s crucial to understand their complexities. In this article, we will look at the pros and cons for offering a restricted stock program to your Read More

Good-Faith Reporting Standards Applies to 2018 ACA Reporting

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (“ACA”) is designed to make affordable health care more accessible to more people than ever before. However, ACA also created the need for employers to prepare and file a seemingly endless mountain of paperwork. In fact, the IRS requires reports to be submitted by certain deadlines or face severe penalties. Fortunately, the IRS handed employers and plan administrators Read More

FAQS About Retirement Plan Hardship Distributions

Typically, retirement plan sponsors intend for the funds contained in a retirement plan to be held until the participant retires. Under some circumstances, a participant may need the money now. Some retirement plans – like 401(k) plans, 403(b) plans, and 457(b) plans – allow participants to receive hardship distributions, though they are not required to do so. In this article, we will examine some common questions Read More

Rising Penalties for Non-Compliant Employee Benefit Plans

The use of employee benefit plans is so widespread that it may be easy to become complacent about developing and maintaining them. However, plan administrators and employers who understand the rising penalties for non-compliant employee benefit plans may be able to avoid being an EBSA statistic. The Employee Benefit Security Administration (EBSA) is tasked with finding and addressing ERISA violations. In 2017, the Read More

Auto Portability Programs: Fiduciary Responsibilities Under New DOL Guidelines

Plan sponsors and employers face an issue with the portability of employees’ retirement plans. When the employee leaves, but doesn’t take their retirement fund, the plan often transfers the funds to an IRA. After five years, the company administering the retirement account automatically sends the IRA funds to the retirement account sponsored by the employee’s new employer, if it can be found.  Such auto portability Read More

New Tax Bill May Offer Big Changes for Retirement Savings Plans

A bill introduced by GOP lawmakers proposes big changes for taxpayers and retirement savings plans. The Retirement Savings and Other Tax Relief Act of 2018 has received bipartisan support and promises major impact for taxpayers. In fact, there are nine key areas that affect taxpayers’ retirement planning. Open Multiple Employer Plans.   The new bill would remove the “one bad apple” rule that penalizes an entire Read More

A Brief Comparison of MEWA and AHP Requirements

In the field of employee benefit plans, programs may be similar except for a few key factors. Multiple employer welfare arrangements (MEWAs) and Association Health Plans (AHPs), for example, differ in the areas of development, maintenance, and compliance. Development When forming a MEWA or an AHP it is important to consider the following: ERISA. Not all plans are subject to the Employee Retirement Income Read More

IRS Hands Employers Relief from Once-in-Always-In Violations

Employers with tax-exempt Section 403(b) plans are held to a “universal availability” eligibility rule that requires them to allow all employees to make employee elective deferrals to their plan. In the past, there has been confusion about whether part-time employees are permitted to make elective deferrals. Some employers inadvertently violated the rights of certain part-time employees by misinterpreting a policy Read More

New Rules Address Religious and Moral Objections to Certain Preventive Services Mandated Under the ACA

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) offers Americans new opportunities to find and purchase health care insurance. Employers with 50 or more full time employees (and full-time equivalents) are required to offer health insurance to their employees. However, some non-governmental entities object to providing contraceptive care through employee benefit plans on religious or moral grounds. New rules recently released by the Read More