Tag Archives: IRS

Proposed Changes to § 409a Regulations: Greater Clarity and Better Planning Alternatives

Andrew Liazos and Allison Wilkerson wrote this bylined article on Tax Code Section 409A’s deferral and payment requirements for nonqualified deferred com­pensation plans. Recent IRS Section 409A guidance makes “several helpful changes that employers will want to consider and take advantage of,” the authors wrote, and they warned employers that they ignore final IRS “at … 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

IRS Implementation of ACA’s Employer Shared Responsibility Provision Falls Short Based on the Results of a Recent Audit

Based on a recent audit conducted by the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA), the IRS’ processes and procedures to ensure compliance with the employer information reporting requirements mandated by the employer shared responsibility provision (the play or pay rules) of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), have fallen short of their intended goals. (see … Continue Reading

Proposed Regulations Update Mortality Tables, Minimum Present Value Requirements for Defined Pension Plans

Near the end of 2016, the Department of Treasury (Treasury) and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) published two significant sets of proposed regulations on issues pertaining to defined benefit pension plans, including mortality table updates that likely would increase pension funding liabilities for many plan sponsors. Read the full article.… Continue Reading

Advantages of Using ESOPs To Structure Acquisitions and Divestitures In An Uncertain Economy

M&A advisors are becoming increasingly familiar with leveraged ESOP transactions and are routinely considering the ESOP platform in structuring acquisitions and divestitures.  The first part of this article references the ways in which leveraged ESOPs have historically been used to provide a tax-advantaged exit strategy for privately held business owners. The article then discusses the … 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

Review of Section 409A Proposed Regulations

On June 22, 2016, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued proposed changes to the regulations under the Internal Revenue Code (Code) §409A. The Code intends to clarify or modify a wide range of very restrictive rules pertaining to “nonqualified” deferred compensation plans as well as other types of compensation arrangements that may defer compensation. The … 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

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 Expands Ability of Safe Harbor Plan Sponsors to Make Mid-Year Changes

The IRS recently issued guidance providing safe harbor 401(k) plan sponsors with increased flexibility to make mid-year plan changes. Notice 2016-16 sets forth new rules for when and how safe harbor plan sponsors may amend their plans to make mid-year changes, a process which traditionally has been subject to significant restrictions. Read the full article.… Continue Reading

IRS Adjusted ACA Fee Amounts for the 2015/2016 Policy or Plan Years and Additional Payment Options

The Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) fee was established under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) to advance comparative clinical effectiveness research. The PCORI fee is assessed on issuers of health insurance policies and sponsors of self-insured health plans. The fees are calculated using the average number of lives covered under the policy or plan, and … 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

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

Whoops! How Do I Fix Our Retirement Plan’s Operational Error?

Join McDermott partner, Susan Peters Schaefer, at a Worldwide Employee Benefits Network Chicago Chapter breakfast meeting that will cover operational errors in retirement plans. Mistakes can and do happen, especially in the complex world of retirement plans. In recognition, the U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS) created the Employee Plans Compliance Resolution Program (EPCRS) to help … 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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