Tag Archives: Internal Revenue Service

Adding Value to Your Organization: Benefits Best Practices to Avoid Common Mistakes

In a recent webinar, Jake Mattinson and Sarah Raaii discussed the practices that benefits professionals can adopt to add value to their organizations and avoid common mistakes.  Jake and Sarah discussed recommended practices for ERISA benefit claims and inquiries, how to review plan compensation definitions and payroll codes, best practices for corrections using the Voluntary … Continue Reading

Supreme Court Rules in Favor of Church-Affiliated Hospitals in Church Plan Litigation

In a major victory for church-affiliated hospitals, the US Supreme Court overturned three appellate court rulings and decided unanimously that church-affiliated hospitals can maintain their pension plans as “church plans” exempt from the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, as amended (ERISA), regardless of whether a church actually established the plan. Impacted health systems, … Continue Reading

CMS Aims to Stabilize Exchanges but Does Not Address Issuers’ Biggest Questions

CMS recently released a final rule with the goal of stabilizing Exchange markets for 2018. The agency also issued several significant guidance documents where CMS extended the deadlines for 2018 rate and Exchange qualified health plan application submissions, adopted a good faith compliance standard for 2018 and delegated additional plan certification responsibilities to states. While … Continue Reading

Reports on Increase in Retirement Plan Audits Further Illustrate the Need for Plan Sponsors to Focus on Administrative Compliance

Recent reports show that the number of retirement plan audits by government agencies is increasing. A survey released by Willis Towers Watson indicates that one in every three plan sponsors has experienced a retirement plan audit by a government agency in the past two years. Unofficial reports also indicate that the US Department of Labor … Continue Reading

Proposed Changes to Form 5500 Would Significantly Increase Reporting Obligations for Health and Welfare Plan Sponsors

On July 11, 2016, the Department of Labor (DOL) and Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced a proposal to implement significant changes to the forms and regulations that govern annual employee benefit plan reporting on Form 5500. The proposed changes, which were published in the Federal Register on July 21, 2016, would considerably increase the annual … Continue Reading

Proposed Changes to Form 5500 Reporting Requirements May Have Significant Impact on Retirement Plan Sponsors

On July 11, 2016, the Department of Labor (DOL), Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) announced a proposal to implement sweeping changes to the forms and regulations that govern annual employee benefit plan reporting on Form 5500. The proposed changes, which were published in the Federal Register on July 21, 2016, … Continue Reading

A Blueprint for Maintaining an Individually Designed Qualified Plan after the IRS’s Determination Letter Program Cutback

On June 29, 2016, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) officially sounded the death knell for the five-year remedial amendment cycle with its release of Revenue Procedure 2016-37. Effective January 1, 2017, employers that sponsor an individually designed qualified retirement plan—a group that includes most large retirement plans—may no longer request periodic determination letters. Instead, the IRS will continue … Continue Reading

IRS Regulations Provide That Certain Employees of Partnerships Now Have Self-Employment Status for Employee Benefit and Tax Purposes

The IRS and US Department of Treasury have issued final and temporary regulations which address benefit and self-employment tax issues regarding partners in a partnership which is the sole owner of a second, wholly owned legal entity. The regulations are intended to clarify that where the partners are separately working for the second legal entity, … Continue Reading

DOL Official Says Office Is Investigating Large Defined Benefit Plans Regarding Locating and Paying Terminated Vested Participants

Recent comments from an official with the Department of Labor (DOL) indicate that the DOL’s Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) has begun investigating large defined benefit plans to review how plan administrators are keeping track of benefits owed to terminated vested participants and if they are really paying participants like they should be.  According to … Continue Reading

IRS Guidance on Employee Benefits Implications of Supreme Court Obergefell Decision on Same-Sex Marriage

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) recently issued Notice 2015-86, which provides some additional clarification, in the form of questions and answers, on the treatment of same-sex spouses under tax-qualified retirement plans and health and welfare plans, including cafeteria plans, as a result of the June 26, 2015, decision from the Supreme Court of the United … Continue Reading

Employers Need 2015 Year-End Planning to Meet Employee Reporting and Withholding Requirements

To avoid tax reporting and withholding penalties as 2015 draws to a close, employers need to properly plan and check their reporting for employees under non-qualified deferred compensation, fringe benefits, health benefits or other remuneration. Year-end planning for employers is important, because employee information reporting, including both Form W-2 and the new Affordable Care Act … Continue Reading

IRS Announces Employee Benefit Plan Limits for 2016

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) recently announced the cost-of-living adjustments to the applicable dollar limits for various employer-sponsored retirement and welfare plans for 2016. Although some of the dollar limits currently in effect for 2015 will change, the majority of the limits will remain unchanged for 2016. Read full article.… Continue Reading

Cracking the Code: Taxing Developments in Benefit Compliance

Generally, any type of organization can offer a defined benefit pension plan under Section 4019a) in the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended (the “Code) or a Code Section 401(k) Plan. However, only employers described in Code Section 501(a) and educational organizations described in Code Section 170(b)(A)(iii) are permitted to sponsor Code Section 403(b) … Continue Reading

IRS Announces Major Changes to Its Determination Letter Program for Individually Designed Retirement Plans

On July 21, 2015, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued Announcement 2015-19 (the Announcement), which ends the five-year remedial amendment cycles for individually designed plans effective January 1, 2017.  For remedial amendment cycles beginning after 2016, plan sponsors will no longer be able to apply for determination letters on their individually designed defined contribution and … Continue Reading

King v. Burwell Decision Upholds Subsidies in Federal Exchanges

On June 25, 2015, the Supreme Court of the United States ruled in King v. Burwell that the Affordable Care Act (ACA) requires premium tax credits to be made available in states that use a federal exchange. The case challenged an Internal Revenue Service (IRS) regulation allowing tax credits in federal exchanges. The Supreme Court upheld the … Continue Reading

Supreme Court Rejects Latest Challenge to Affordable Care Act: What Are Employers’ Obligations Going Forward?

On June 25, 2015, the Supreme Court of the United States upheld one of the main pillars of the Affordable Care Act (ACA): the tax credits that allow millions of Americans to afford health care insurance on the public exchanges. In King v. Burwell, Chief Justice Roberts, writing for a 6–3 majority, held that middle- … Continue Reading

IRS Issues Q&As on Information Reporting under Code Section 6055 and 6056

Yesterday the U.S. Internal Revenue Service issued new Questions & Answers regarding the Affordable Care Act’s reporting rules under Code Section 6055 and 6056. The categories under the guidance include: Basics of the Reporting, Who is Required to Report, Methods of Reporting (for employers), What Information Must be Reported (for providers), and How and When to … Continue Reading

IRS Permits Puerto Rico-Qualified Plans in U.S. Group Trusts, Extends Deadline for Certain Puerto Rico Spin-Offs

The U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS) recently issued Revenue Ruling 2014-24, which expressly permits retirement plans that are tax qualified only in Puerto Rico (Puerto Rico-only plans) to continue to pool assets with U.S.-qualified plans in Revenue Ruling 81-100 group trusts (group trusts) now and in the future.  The ruling is welcome relief for Puerto … Continue Reading

Supreme Court to Review Same-Sex Marriage Cases

The Supreme Court of the United States announced on January 16, 2015, that it would review four cases challenging the constitutionality of state laws banning same-sex marriage in Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio and Tennessee.  The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit ruled in November 2014 that the same-sex marriage bans in these states were … Continue Reading

Join McDermott Partners at a Webinar on TOP IRS and DOL Audit Issues for Retirement Plans

Tuesday, February 10, 2015 12:30 – 1:30 pm EST Please join McDermott Will & Emery for a complimentary webinar discussing key issues retirement plan sponsors should take into account when establishing and maintaining internal controls based on the compliance requirements Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) agents review when they conduct … Continue Reading

Reevaluating Paid Time Off and New Challenges

Cost containment evaluation and strategies relating to overall management of human capital costs remain a continual struggle for many organizations.  Labor costs, far and away, continue to be the largest cost for many organizations.  Consequently, this has resulted in an organizational focus on ways to create efficiencies within their existing benefits programs.  Interestingly, it appears … Continue Reading

IRS Releases Highly Anticipated Cash Balance Plan Regulations

Recently issued regulations provide long-awaited guidance to sponsors of hybrid retirement plans on a variety of issues, including the market rate of return requirement and required changes for plans using crediting rates that do not meet this requirement. In a change from earlier regulations, hybrid plans are now allowed to offer subsidized survivor and early … Continue Reading
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