Benefits Law Update

Members of the Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation Group provide timely updates and commentary on developments affecting employee benefit plans and executive compensation arrangements. The blog is edited by Eric Altholz and Suzanne Meeker, with guest posts from other members of the group.

We are sometimes asked whether a self-funded group health plan is required to cover gender-affirming medical services. As this post explains in detail, it is generally impracticable for a self-funded ERISA-covered plan to exclude coverage for gender-affirming care as there are significant risks of litigation, penalties, or loss of federal financial assistance in implementing such

When the IRS published proposed regulations harmonizing key provisions of Code Sections 409A and 457(f) in 2016, executive compensation lawyers and consultants rejoiced. It was not just that a long wait was over (roughly nine years from the publication of IRS Notice 2007-62, which promised guidance on these issues). The proposed regulations provided much-needed clarifications

This post examines excess deferrals under non-governmental 457(b) plans, including the approved method for correcting them and the penalty for failing to correct them, to make the case for a change in IRS policy on correcting administrative errors in such plans. Non-governmental 457(b) plans are sometimes called “eligible deferred compensation plans” of tax-exempt employers because,

Under the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 (“CAA”), employer-sponsored group health plans, including medical-only plans, must submit information about their prescription drugs and health care spending.[1] This submission is often referred to as the Prescription Drug Data Collection report, or the RxDC report. The deadline for RxDC reports for 2023 is June 1, 2024.

We are often asked about the permissibility of excluding certain categories of employees from participating in an employer’s tax-qualified retirement plan.[1] This post provides a high-level summary of what is and is not permitted.

  • Excludable by Statute. Certain categories of employees, by statute, may be excluded from participating in an employer’s tax-qualified retirement plan.

Under Section 404 of ERISA, plan fiduciaries must act for the exclusive benefit of plan participants and beneficiaries and use plan assets only to provide benefits and defray reasonable expenses of administering the plan. In addition, Section 406 of ERISA prohibits a plan fiduciary from engaging in self-dealing. The Department of Labor (“DOL”) has taken

As part of the routine administration of employee benefit plans, shortly after the end of a calendar year, many transactions must be reported to the federal government (“information returns”) and participants (“payee statements”) using forms such as Forms W-2, 1099, 1094, and 1095. As benefits professionals know, errors can—and do—occur in administering benefit plans, including

The Internal Revenue Service gave retirement plan sponsors end-of-the-year gifts by providing guidance under twelve sections of the SECURE 2.0 Act of 2022 (“SECURE 2.0”). Although Notice 2024-2, released December 20, 2023 (the “Notice”), expressly does not provide “comprehensive guidance,” it does address urgent, practical questions for the implementation of new rules for 401(k), 403(b),