Defined Benefit Plans

  • IRS announces cost of living adjustments for qualified retirement plans

    October 31, 2014

    The IRS last week announced new adjustments for retirement plans, including for 401(k) deferrals, contributions and benefits, and the amount of compensation counted for plan purposes beginning in 2015. Here’s what you and your employer clients need to know.

  • Easing the burden of providing retiree health coverage

    October 30, 2014

    As active employees move into a retiree population, health care decision-making also changes. Some companies provide a subsidy to the retiree population for purchasing health care on their own, but the tracking of that subsidy and the associated premiums create stress on an already overworked HR department.

  • IRS clarifies hybrid plan rules

    September 22, 2014

    The IRS has released long-awaited final regulations that clarify market rate of return issues for cash balance and other hybrid plans. The new rules, effective for the first plan year that begins on or after Jan. 1 2016, sponsors of hybrid plans a clearer path forward.

  • Target-date funds reveal shift in retirement adviser value proposition

    September 8, 2014

    Target-date funds continue to increase in popularity among investors as low-cost retirement vehicles, at the same time the Internet and increased benchmarking have made the retirement industry more transparent than ever.

  • Insurance, utilities sectors buck DB to DC trend

    September 5, 2014

    Some industry sectors are bucking the trend from defined benefit pension plans to defined contribution plans, with more than half of companies in the insurance and utility sectors still offering DB and DC retirement plans to new salaried employees.

  • Retirement has changed but ERISA still holds up

    September 3, 2014

    Despite the ever-changing world, ERISA remains strong and steady. The average American worker is far better off because of ERISA, which has held up remarkably well over the past four decades.

  • ERISA reflects bipartisan approach to employee benefits

    September 2, 2014

    On the 40th anniversary of ERISA, benefits attorney Howard Shapiro contemplates the differences between this landmark piece of legislation and another, the Affordable Care Act.

  • 11 ERISA milestones

    September 2, 2014

    Happy birthday ERISA! The Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 turns 40 on September 2. Here’s a look at 11 important milestones, modifications and case law in the legislation’s 40-year history.

  • The retirement readiness battle: Baby boomers vs. Gen X

    August 20, 2014

    When they leave the workforce, Generation X may be in a similar, not worse, retirement situation than baby boomers given their access to automatic enrollment in defined contribution plans and the growth of their future plan contributions, according to the Employee Benefit Research Institute.

  • What plan sponsors need to know about money market fund changes

    August 19, 2014

    The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission recently adopted amendments to the rules that govern money market mutual funds. Two of the changes could affect how you manage your 401(k) plan.

  • De-risking trend redefining the global pension market

    August 14, 2014

    Commentary: On July 4, 2014, the trustees of the BT Pension Scheme in the U.K. announced a record-breaking longevity risk transfer transaction that will provide long-term protection and income to the pension scheme in the event that members live longer than expected.

  • Multinational employers trending toward DC retirement plans

    July 29, 2014

    Globally, defined-benefit retirement plans are becoming a thing of the past and defined-contribution plans more widely accepted as the preferred alternative, a trend that could spur inquiries from international employer clients.

  • How withdrawal liability could be your employer client’s biggest threat

    July 28, 2014

    Withdrawal liability is a seldom understood threat that could cost some of your employer clients tens of millions of dollars. Benefit advisers hoping to soften the blow can direct employers to do three things.

  • Hybrid retirement plans offer pension-styled security

    July 28, 2014

    Many companies have frozen their defined benefit plans to new hires. Others have abandoned their pensions in favor of a 401(k) or other defined contribution plan. But not everyone is happy with DC plans because they often leave participants to fend for themselves when most have never had to make investment decisions.

  • Obamacare overshadows same-sex marriage benefit compliance

    June 17, 2014

    Employers focused on Obamacare may be missing one of today’s most important compliance issues: benefits for same-sex married couples. Since June 2013, when the United States Supreme Court ruled in U.S. v. Windsor that a federal statute limiting the terms “spouse” and “marriage” to couples of the opposite sex was unconstitutional, a sea-change has taken place in national attitudes about same-sex marriage.

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