Democratic staff of Joint Economic Committee warns Americans’ retirement security is headed for disaster

Americans’ retirement future is shaky and Congress must immediately enact policies to secure it, according to a February 2018 report from the Democratic staff of the Joint Economic Committee. Challenges to planning and saving for retirement include inadequate savings, stagnant wages, and limited access to low-cost and high return accounts, according to the recently-released “Retirement […]

National health expenditure growth expected to average 5.5 percent annually from 2017-2026

National health expenditure growth is expected to average 5.5 percent annually over 2017-2026, according to a report from the Office of the Actuary at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). Growth in national health spending is projected to be faster than projected growth in gross domestic product (GDP) by 1.0 percentage point over […]

DOL investigation results in sentencing of former Connecticut resident for theft of benefit checks

After an investigation by the DOL’s EBSA and Office of Inspector General (OIG), Yolanda Silverio, a former eligibility coordinator for a Connecticut company that administers trust funds for public and private sector health benefit plans, has been sentenced by the U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut to 10 months of imprisonment followed by […]

Survey finds organizations mixed about sharing tax benefits with employees

Organizations are almost evenly split about whether or not they have or may increase pay and benefits for employees in reaction to the new tax reform law, according to a new survey from executive compensation consultancy Pearl Meyer. More companies are still considering changes compared to those that have already taken action. Less than sixty […]

PBGC announces OMB approval of new forms for missing participant programs

The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) has announced that the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has approved a new collection of information consisting of new forms and instructions for its missing participant programs. In December 2017, the PBGC issued final regulations that expand its existing missing participants program to cover terminated 401(k) and most […]

Proposed rule would allow short-term, limited-duration health insurance for longer periods

The Departments of Health and Human Services (HHS), Labor, and the Treasury (the Departments) have issued a proposed rule that would amend the definition of short-term, limited-duration insurance to lengthen the maximum period of such insurance. Consumers would be allowed to buy plans providing coverage for any period of less than 12 months, rather than […]

Retirement plan dollar limitations not changed by Tax Cut and Jobs Act of 2017, IRS says

The IRS has announced that the Tax Cut and Jobs Act of 2017 (P.L. 115-97) does not affect the 2018 cost-of-living adjustments (COLAs) for retirement plan dollar limitations. According to the IRS, the Tax Cut and Jobs Act of 2017 made no changes to the section of the tax law that limits benefits and contributions […]

FMLA leave noted as basis for low performance rating, sending retaliation claim to jury

The fact that a branch manager’s “considerable time off” in 2014 to take FMLA leave was noted as a factor justifying her lowered performance rating, and her lowered rating in turn was a cited reason for a bank not to consider her for an assistant manager position when her job was eliminated in a restructuring, […]

Spencer’s Benefits NetNews – February 23, 2018

  About this Newsletter The Spencer’s Benefits Reports is a summary of the week’s news items posted in the WHAT’S NEW pages of Spencer’s Benefits Reports Online. For questions regarding this email service, contact Customer Service at (800)449-9525. NetNews Subscription Want to receive these Newsletters via E-mail? Sign Up / Unsubscribe Resources Online Store […]

EBSA highlights results of enforcement and compliance activity in FY 2017

The Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) has issued the results of its enforcement and compliance activity for employee benefit plans and participants in fiscal year (FY) 2017. EBSA’s oversight authority extends to nearly 681,000 retirement plans, approximately 2.3 million health plans, and a similar number of other welfare benefit plans, such as those providing life […]