LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
Williams Mullen: Remedies for Plan Communications Errors Clarified

By Brydon M. DeWitt The Supreme Court of the United States recently clarified the relief available to plan participants and beneficiaries for inaccurate plan descriptions. Although it confirmed that plan documents control over conflicting plan descriptions, the Court also held that a participant...

David Pratt on Hybrid Pension Plans: Final/Proposed Regulations and Recent Judicial Decisions

David Pratt on Hybrid Pension Plan Final Regulations On October 19, 2010, Treasury and IRS issued final regulations on hybrid retirement plans. The regulations provide guidance on the changes made by the Pension Protection Act of 2006 (PPA), as amended by the Worker, Retiree, and Employer Recovery...

Too Big to Fail and Too Big to Pay: States, Their Public-Pension Bills, and the Constitution

By Debra Brubaker Burns* *Juris Doctor Candidate 2012, University of California, Hastings College of the Law; Doctor of Philosophy, University of Minnesota. Excerpt from Too Big to Fail and Too Big to Pay: States, Their Public-Pension Bills, and the Constitution , 39 Hastings Const. L.Q. 253 (Fall...

When a Promise Isn't a Promise: Public Employers' Ability to Alter Pension Plans of Retired Employees

By Gavin Reinke* * Candidate for Doctor of Jurisprudence, May 2012, Vanderbilt University Law School. Excerpt from When a Promise Isn't a Promise: Public Employers' Ability to Alter Pension Plans of Retired Employees, 64 Vand. L. Rev. 1673 (October 2011) I. Introduction The economic downturn...

The Public Employee Pension Transparency Act (2011 H.R. 567)

State and local governments traditionally provide employees with defined benefit pension plans, which guarantee a certain amount of retirement income for life. The economic downturn has impacted state and local government revenues and the costs associated with maintaining these plans. According to reports...

The Public Employee Pension Transparency Act (2011 H.R. 567)

The economic downturn has impacted state and local government revenues, and the costs associated with maintaining defined benefit pension plans and unfunded liabilities are on the rise. Legislation has been drafted to address perceived problems with state and local public pensions to require them to...

Milgram v. Orthopedic Assocs. Defined Contribution Pension Plan

Do ERISA and the IRC prohibit enforcement of a money judgment against a defined contribution plan? In this Analysis, Barry L. Salkin of Olshan Grundman Frome Rosenzweig & Wolosky LLP addresses this and the other issues. He writes: SUMMARY : A defined contribution plan beneficiary sued under ERISA...

Florida Judge Sides Against State in Pension Case

A Florida circuit court ruled last week that Gov. Rick Scott (R) and Republican legislative leaders' decision last year to cut public employee salaries to offset the state's contribution to their pension fund was an unconstitutional breach of contract. "The 2011 Legislature, when...

Pension and Postretirement Benefit Accounting

Pension and postretirement benefits represent a significant cost to employers. The Financial Accounting Standards Board has specified that postretirement benefits are a form of deferred compensation. FASB concluded that the obligation to provide postretirement benefits is incurred as the employee renders...

D.C. Circuit: Labor Board Lacked Quorum In February 2012

WASHINGTON, D.C. - (Mealey's) The District of Columbia U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Jan. 25 declined to enforce a National Labor Relations Board ruling that an employer violated the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) by refusing to reduce an oral agreement to writing and signing off on a collective...

The Shadow of Detroit: Pension Gaps Threaten Cities and States

by Lou Cannon Detroit's bankruptcy made a brief splash last month before being driven from the headlines by terrorist warnings, congressional intransigence and the sexual shenanigans of a New York City mayoralty candidate and the San Diego mayor. But as a possible portent for other cities and...

Detroit's Bankruptcy: the Pension Issue

Judge Rhodes ruled yesterday that the city's bankruptcy can proceed. He also ruled that the state constitutional provision that protects state employees' pensions from being diminished or impaired is preempted by federal law. Appeals will be filed, but the bankruptcy will move forward. Judge...

Detroit Bankruptcy Ruling Imperils Pensions

by Korey Clark This month the federal bankruptcy court judge presiding over Detroit's bankruptcy case, ruled that the city's public pensions were not untouchable, even though they are expressly protected under Michigan's Constitution. "Pension benefits are a contractual right and...

Heard About Detroit? The First Word on Treatment of Public Employee Pension Benefits in Chapter 9 (And Absolutely Not the Last)

by Ben Feder The recent ruling by Judge Stephen Rhodes finding the City of Detroit eligible for protection under Chapter 9 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code has rightly received considerable attention. The determination that Detroit has met the standards under Section 109(c) of the Bankruptcy Code to be...

Williams Mullen: D.C. Circuit Rules That ‘Exhaustion of Administrative Remedies’ Is Not Required For Violations of ERISA’S Statutory Guarantees: Stephens v. Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation

By Mark S. Thomas and Robert W. Shaw The U. S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit has joined five other federal circuits to rule that pension plan participants need not exhaust a plan’s internal remedial procedures before they file suit in federal court to assert violations...