Rick Stepanovic Rick Stepanovic

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Rick Stepanovic focuses his practice on employee benefits and executive compensation matters. He has experience working on matters related to tax-qualified pension plans, health and welfare plans, and deferred compensation arrangements. He also has experience handling correction and administrative matters before the Internal Revenue Service and the Department of Labor. Read Rick Stepanovic's full bio.

DOL Creates Path for 401(k) Plans to Offer Private Equity Investment Options


By , and on Oct 29, 2020
Posted In Employee Benefits, Fiduciary and Investment Issues

In June, the US Department of Labor issued an information letter indicating that it will allow defined contribution retirement plans (such as 401(k) plans) to indirectly invest in private equity funds. While information letters are not binding, this new guidance creates a significant opportunity for plan sponsors to consider investment options that include private equity...

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CARES Act Impacts All Benefit Plans


By , , , , , , , , , , and on Mar 31, 2020
Posted In Employee Benefits, Employment, Executive Compensation, Health and Welfare Plans, Retirement Plans

In the ongoing effort to help individuals impacted by COVID-19, Congress passed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Securities Act (CARES Act) on March 27, 2020. The President signed the CARES Act into law the same day. The historic stimulus package provides wide-ranging relief for both employers and employees. This includes rules that impact health...

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Up, Up and Away: 2020 Increased Penalties for Employee Benefit Plans


By , and on Feb 13, 2020
Posted In Employee Benefits, Health and Welfare Plans, Retirement Plans

For 2020, legislation enacted in December of 2019 dramatically increases penalties imposed by the Internal Revenue Code (the Code) for late filing of certain employee benefit plan notices and reports. In addition, a final rule published by the Department of Labor (DOL) makes inflation adjustments to a wide range of penalties. Learn the penalty amounts...

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Frozen 2: IRS Expands Nondiscrimination Relief for Frozen Defined Benefit Pension Plans


By , and on Dec 10, 2019
Posted In Employee Benefits, Retirement Plans

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) expanded the temporary relief for frozen defined benefit plans to include nondiscrimination requirements relating to benefits, rights and features, available for plan years beginning before 2021. The expanded relief enables frozen pension plans to satisfy the nondiscrimination requirements that apply to benefits, rights or features. Access the full article.

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Still Tax, Even Without the Distributed Cash


By , and on Oct 22, 2019
Posted In Employee Benefits, Retirement Plans

The IRS recently issued guidance on the tax treatment, withholding and reporting for required distributions from tax-qualified retirement plans. Plan sponsors should contact their retirement vendors and trustees to ensure that they implement the tax requirements of the new guidance appropriately for their tax-qualified retirement plans. Access the full article.

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IRS Opens the Door to Lump Sum Payment Windows for Retirees in Pay Status


By , and on May 2, 2019
Posted In Employee Benefits, Retirement Plans

Due to an Internal Revenue Service (IRS) change in course published in Notice 2019-18, plan sponsors may now offer retirees lump-sum windows as another pension “de-risking” option. Plan sponsors considering pension de-risking opportunities and options should carefully evaluate the potential benefits and risks of a retiree lump-sum window. Access the full article.

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Paving the Way for More HRAs


By , , , , and on Nov 1, 2018
Posted In Employee Benefits, Health and Welfare Plans

President Trump signed an executive order last year directing the Secretaries of Labor, Treasury and Health and Human Services to consider proposing regulations to “increase the usability of HRAs.” This month, the collective departments issued proposed regulations containing changes to the prohibition on pairing HRAs with individual health policies, as well as other changes to...

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Fridays With Benefits Webinar | Should Old Acquaintance Be Forgot? Our Retrospective on 2018 Benefits Issues


By , and on Oct 30, 2018
Posted In Employee Benefits, Retirement Plans

Join us Friday, November 2 for our monthly Fridays with Benefits webinar. With 2019 right around the corner, now is the time to dust off your year-end checklist and take stock of changes we have seen in 2018, and how they project to impact planning for the new year. Join us for an interactive discussion...

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All Together Now: DOL Finalizes Rule for Association Health Plans


By , , and on Jun 26, 2018
Posted In Employee Benefits, Health and Welfare Plans

The US Department of Labor published a final rule that makes it easier for a group or association of employers to act as a single “employer” sponsor of an Association Health Plan under ERISA. By creating an opportunity for small employers and self-employed individuals to take advantage of the economies of scale that are usually...

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Federal Appellate Court Finds That Title VII Bans Gender Identity Discrimination


By , and on May 31, 2018
Posted In Employment

The US Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit ruled on March 7, 2018, that workplace discrimination on the basis of gender identity and gender expression violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The language of Title VII does not expressly prohibit discrimination on the basis of gender identity. However, the US...

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