Pension & Benefits NetNews – January 7, 2020

 

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Featured This Week

 

Employee Benefits Management News

 

  • Respondents in ACA contraceptive coverage case say Supreme Court review not warranted, Third Circuit decision was correct
  • Individual mandate ruled unconstitutional, but decision on rest of law sent back to the lower court
  • Industry groups celebrate Cadillac tax repeal

Pension Plan Guide News

 

  • Trump signs massive spending bill with SECURE Act includedn
  • PBGC posts 2020 mortality tables on website
  • Advisory Committee on Actuarial Examinations to meet January 9-10, 2020

 

Employee Benefits Management News

 

Respondents in ACA contraceptive coverage case say Supreme Court review not warranted, Third Circuit decision was correct

Because the Third Circuit’s decision that the contraceptive exemption regulations are likely unlawful is correct, Supreme Court review of Commonwealth of Pennsylvania v. Trump is not warranted. That’s according to the response brief filed recently by the Attorneys General of Pennsylvania and New Jersey in opposition to the Little Sisters of the Poor’s petition for certiorari. For more information, see ¶2130A.

        (Read Cheetah) »

Individual mandate ruled unconstitutional, but decision on rest of law sent back to the lower court

On December 18, the Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled that the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) individual mandate is unconstitutional because “it can no longer be read as a tax, and there is no other constitutional provision that justifies this exercise of congressional power.” However, the ruling from the three-judge panel did not answer the central question of whether the rest of the ACA remains valid after Congress removed the penalty for not having health insurance. For more information, see ¶2130D.

        (Read Cheetah) »

Industry groups celebrate Cadillac tax repeal

After President Trump signed the $1.4 trillion spending bill on December 20, 2019, a broad range of stakeholders celebrated the long-awaited repeal of the so-called “Cadillac tax.” Under the new law, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) excise tax on high-cost health plans, which was scheduled to go into effect January 1, 2022, will never take effect. The new law, the Further Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2020, contains several other provisions impacting health and welfare plans. These include the repeal of the medical device tax, the repeal of the health insurance providers fee, a 10-year extension of annual employer fees to fund the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI), and an extension of the employer credit for paid family and medical leave. For more information, see ¶2130E.

        (Read Cheetah) »

Pension Plan Guide News

 

Trump signs massive spending bill with SECURE Act included

On December 20, 2019, President Donald Trump signed a bipartisan, year-end government spending and tax package just hours before federal funding was set to expire. The government funding measure includes the Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement Act of 2019 (SECURE Act), which makes substantial changes to retirement saving rules. On December 17, 2019, the House passed by a vote of 297-120 the $1.4 trillion spending package, and then, on December 19, 2019, the Senate passed the measure by a vote of 71 to 23. The amendments were approved in a stand-alone bill in the House in May, but remained stalled in the Senate. The sweeping rule changes generally apply to tax years beginning after 2019. The SECURE Act, effective for plan years beginning after December 31, 2020, expands multiple employer plans (MEPs) by establishing a new class of MEP service provider that will be able to create and offer an open MEP called a Pooled Employer Plan (PEP). These individual account plans will provide benefits to the employees of two or more employers and can be structured as a 401(k) or another qualified plan, or as an IRA-based plan. The Act eliminates the annual notice requirement for the 3 percent non-elective contribution safe harbor. In addition, plan amendments to nonelective status will be allowed at any time before the 30th day before the close of the plan year. Amendments after that time (until the last day of the following plan year) will be allowed if a nonelective contribution of at least 4 percent of compensation was made for all eligible employees for the plan year. For more information, see ¶hr1865enrolledbillddu.

        (Read Cheetah) »

PBGC posts 2020 mortality tables on website

The IRS has provided the updated mortality improvement rates and static mortality tables to be used under Code Sec. 430(h)(3)(A). These rates are used to calculate the funding target and other items for valuation dates occurring during calendar year 2021. Also included are modified “unisex” mortality tables for use in determining minimum present value under Code Sec. 417(e)(3) for distributions with annuity starting dates that occur during stability periods beginning in calendar year 2021. For more information, see ¶168Q.

        (Read Cheetah) »

Advisory Committee on Actuarial Examinations to meet January 9-10, 2020

The Advisory Committee on Actuarial Examinations of the Joint Board for the Enrollment of Actuaries (JBEA) will hold a partially open meeting on January 9 and 10, 2020. The meeting, which will be at the Internal Revenue Service, 1111 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC, will be from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on January 9, 2020 and 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on January 10, 2020. The purpose of the meeting is to discuss topics and questions that may be recommended for inclusion on future Joint Board examinations in actuarial mathematics and methodology, and to review the November 2019 Pension (EA-2F) Examination in order to make recommendations relative to it. Topics for inclusion on the syllabus for the Joint Board’s examination program for the May 2020 Basic (EA-1) Examination and the May 2020 Pension (EA-2L) Examination will also be discussed. For more information, see ¶168z.

        (Read Cheetah) »

 

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