CalSTRS Finalizes Divestments from Gun Manufacturers
(Posted on April 23, 2013 by )

An article in Pensions & Investments reports that in the wake of the school shooting in Newtown, Connecticut, the California State Teachers Retirement System (CalSTRS) has approved the divestiture of holdings in two gun manufacturers that make weapons that are illegal in California.

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Governmental Health Plans Face New Fee for 2014-2016
(Posted on April 16, 2013 by )

One of the least noticed provisions of the The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), sometimes referred to as Obamacare, is a transitional reinsurance fee applicable to 2014 through 2016. The Department of Human Services issued regulations implementing this provision on March 11, 2013. These regulations clarify that although governmental entities are exempt from tax and from most of ERISA, health plans that governmental employers maintain for their employees will be subject to the new fee.

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Expanded Correction Program for 403(b) Plans
(Posted on April 4, 2013 by )

Rev. Proc. 2013-12 for the first time allows 403(b) plans (tax-sheltered annuities or custodial accounts for employees of public schools, churches, and certain other tax-exempt organizations) the same ability to correct plan errors under the Employee Plans Compliance Resolution System (“EPCRS”) as is provided in the case of qualified plans. The IRS has now issued a plain language “Fix-It Guide” for 403(b) plans that discusses common mistakes, how to avoid them, and how to fix them if they occur.

Social Security Tax Rates Return to Higher Levels for 2013
(Posted on January 1, 2013 by )

After two years in which Social Security tax rates for employees (though not for employers) were reduced, rates returned to normal levels for 2013. Read more

New Article: Same-Sex Marriage: Thinking About Employee Benefits
(Posted on December 28, 2012 by )

Same-sex marriage is legal in Maryland as of January 1, 2013. A two-part series of articles in Baltimore OUTloud discusses how this will affect employee benefits in that state.

Final Regulations Govern FICA Taxation of 403(b) Contributions
(Posted on November 19, 2007 by )

The regulations governing the FICA taxation of 403(b) transactions previously issued in temporary and proposed form have now been finalized with no changes. Read more

Final Regulations Issued Under Code Section 403(b)
(Posted on September 4, 2007 by )

The IRS explanation states as follows: Read more

Distributions from a Pension Plan Under a Phased Retirement Program
(Posted on June 11, 2007 by )

The IRS has issued a copy of its long-awaited final regulations on the extent to which a pension plan can make distributions to an individual in the process of a phased retirement. A copy of the regulations can be seen by clicking here.

Final IRS Regulations Clarify Maximum Limits for Governmental Qualified Plans
(Posted on April 5, 2007 by )

On April 5, 2007, the IRS proposed new regulations under section 415 of the Internal Revenue Code (IRC), as amended. Section 415 limits the benefits that may be paid by defined benefit plans and contributions that may be made to defined contribution plans. While some of the provisions may be a restatement of the current rules or a codification of guidance issued over the years since the current regulations were adopted, other provisions may represent new interpretations that need to be studied carefully. Read more

Post-death qualified domestic relations order invalidated
(Posted on January 9, 2006 by )

The recent case of Sanzo v. NYSA-ILA Pension Trust Fund illustrates the perils of a badly drafted qualified domestic relations order (“QDRO”). Although directly applicable only to QDROs of ERISA-covered plans, the principles underlying it would also apply to governmental and church plans that allow for the recognition of domestic relations orders. Read more