Working Families Tax Relief Act Affects Domestic Partner Benefits
(Posted on October 29, 2004 by )


After publication of this article, the Supreme Court issued United States v. Windsor. That decision overturned the Defense of Marriage Act, which had previously prevented federal recognition of same-sex marriage. Thus, this article is now obsolete as to same-sex spouses, although it continues to apply to domestic partners who are not legally married.

One issue that has been completely ignored in the press surrounding the Working Families Tax Relief Act of 2004, Public Law No. 108-311 (“Act”), is the apparently unintentional effect it will have on employers that sponsor employee benefit plans covering domestic partners or same-sex spouses of employees, and on employees whose domestic partners or same-sex spouses are covered by such plans. Because the relevant provisions of the Act will become effective starting in 2005, employers that sponsor such plans will have to act quickly to deal with the changes made by the Act. Read more

Speech outline, “Federal Law Update, 2003-2004,” now available
(Posted on October 18, 2004 by )


The outline of the speech, originally presented on October 12, 2004, at the 18th Annual Convention of the National Council on Teacher Retirement, is available by clicking here. Read more

Department of Labor Issues Guidance Regarding Missing Participants in Defined Contribution Plans
(Posted on September 30, 2004 by )


Field Assistance Bulletin 2004-02 gives guidance on what a plan fiduciary needs to do in order to fulfill its fiduciary obligations under ERISA with respect to: (1) locating a missing participant of a terminated defined contribution plan; and (2) distributing an account balance when efforts to communicate with a missing participant fail to secure a distribution election.

Automatic Rollover Safe Harbor: Final Rule and Prohibited Transaction Class Exemption
(Posted on September 28, 2004 by )


The Department of Labor has issued a final regulation that establishes a safe harbor pursuant to which a fiduciary of a pension plan subject to Title I of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, as amended (ERISA), will be deemed to have satisfied his or her fiduciary responsibilities in connection with automatic rollovers of certain mandatory distributions to individual retirement plans. Read more

Carol Calhoun interviewed on CBS Evening News regarding Enron
(Posted on February 4, 2002 by )


Sharyl Attkisson interviewed Carol Calhoun for her CBS Evening News report on allegations Enron was stealing money from employee benefits entitled, “Did Enron Steal From Employees?” You can see the video by clicking here. Or a transcript is available by clicking here.

Milwaukee Journal Sentinal, “Cost of retirement blitz is big unknown”
(Posted on January 21, 2002 by )


Carol Calhoun was quoted in the article in the January 21, 2002 Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, which dealt with questions concerning the pension benefits to be provided to certain top officials of the Milwaukee government.

Milwaukee Journal Sentinal, “Pensions too rich for IRS?”
(Posted on January 15, 2002 by )


Carol Calhoun was quoted in the article in the January 15, 2002 issue of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, which questioned whether pension benefits provided for top Milwaukee government officials might violate IRS limits.