by Nancy S. Gerrie and Jeffrey M. Holdvogt

The Puerto Rico Treasury Department recently issued Circular Letter No. 13-02, extending the deadline for employers that sponsor qualified retirement plans benefiting Puerto Rico employees to adopt amendments and file for determination letters on the qualified status of their plans under the 2011 Puerto Rico tax code.

Tax-qualified retirement plans benefiting Puerto Rico employees—both dual-qualified (i.e., plans qualified under both the U.S. and Puerto Rico Internal Revenue Codes) and Puerto Rico-only qualified—that have not already been amended or filed to comply with the 2011 Puerto Rico tax code now must be both amended and filed by the due date (not including any extension) for the employer to file its Puerto Rico income tax return for the first taxable year commencing on or after January 1, 2013.  For employers with a calendar tax year, the deadline is April 15, 2014.

Puerto Rico employers that file for a three-month extension of time to file their income tax return for the first taxable year commencing on or after January 1, 2013, may have this deadline extended.  However, use of this extended deadline requires payment of an additional $150 filing fee for the determination letter filing.  Employers with a calendar tax year that use this extension will have a deadline of July 15, 2014. 

For more information on the Puerto Rico amendment and filing requirements, see “Puerto Rico Retirement Plans: Issues Employers Should Think About in 2012” (which has not been updated to reflect the new amendment and filing deadlines).

 

by Joseph S. Adams, Anne S. Becker, Kary Crassweller and Stephen Pavlick, PC 

New guidance issued by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) aims to help participants and beneficiaries with the “decumulation” phase of retirement planning by requiring sponsors to provide illustrations of lifetime retirement income.

To read the full article, please click here.

by Paul J. Compernolle, Ashley McCarthy and Maureen O’Brien

Section 4043 of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) requires pension plan sponsors to report a variety of corporate and plan events to the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC).  In November 2009, the PBGC proposed regulations that would have eliminated most of the reporting waivers available under current law and drastically increased the reporting requirements applicable to pension plans.  Plan sponsors and practitioners widely criticized the 2009 proposed regulations as overly burdensome.  Citing both this feedback and a 2010 executive order directing agencies to review existing regulations to identify those that could be made less onerous, the PBGC recently issued revised proposed regulations (the Proposed Regulations) that reinstate many of the exemptions that would have been eliminated under the 2009 proposed regulations.  The Proposed Regulations would also replace the current funding-based exemption scheme with an approach based on the financial soundness of pension plans and their sponsors.

by Lionel Lesur and Lisa A. Linsky

 
On April 23, 2013, the French Parliament gave final approval to a bill allowing same-sex couples to get married and adopt children.  This makes France the 14th country in the world to legalize marriage between same-sex couples, and the 9th in Europe.  Law No.2013-404, approving marriages between same-sex couples, was signed into law by the French President on May 17, 2013 and published in the Official Journal on May 18, 2013.
 
To read the full article, click here.

 

by Joseph S. Adams, Todd A. Solomon and Brian J. Tiemann

On March 26 and 27, 2013, the Supreme Court of the United States heard oral arguments in cases challenging the constitutionality of the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and California’s Proposition 8.  A Supreme Court ruling in either case may have significant implications for employee benefit plans given the many federally mandated spousal benefits that currently do not extend to same-sex spouses in light of DOMA.

To read the full article, click here.

by Joseph S. Adams and Jeffrey M. Holdvogt

In a corporate spin-off, both the existing company and the new company (spinco) must consider the implications for employees, employee benefit plans and executive compensation arrangements.  Benefit plans and compensation arrangements can represent significant liabilities and responsibilities, and typically are expressly allocated in an employee matters agreement (EMA).  This article provides a brief summary of some of the key employee benefit plans issues to consider in a spin-off.

To read the full article, click here

by Jorge R. Arciniega, Elisabeth Malis Morgan and Heather Egan Sussman

The U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) released updated guidance on how to make online advertising and marketing disclosures “clear and conspicuous” to avoid consumer deception.  The guidelines affect the structure and format of digital advertisements and marketing initiatives such as the use of endorsements and testimonials.

To read the full article, click here.

by Jonathan J. Boyles, Paul J. Compernolle and David Diaz

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit ruled that owners can be personally liable for multiemployer withdrawal liability where the owner leases property to its own closely held corporation.  The decision highlights the dangers of related-party transactions, failing to observe business formalities and holding property personally.

To read the full article, click here.