The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (“PBGC”) released its highly-anticipated interim final rule (the “IFR”) on July 9, 2021, providing methodology for calculating the amount of special financial assistance (“SFA”) available to certain financially troubled multiemployer pension plans (“MEPPs”) under the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (“ARPA”).  The IFR also sets out additional details on

On Friday, May 28, 2021, the Congressional Research Service (“CRS”) released its analysis of Multiemployer Defined Benefit Pension Plans (“MEPPs”) that are potentially eligible for special financial assistance under the American Rescue Plan Act, 2021 (“ARPA”).  As we previously discussed in our article on ARPA’s special assistance for financially troubled MEPPs, a MEPP is eligible

On Tuesday, May 18, 2021 the IRS issued Notice 2021-31 providing 86 FAQs related to premium assistance for COBRA benefits under the American Rescue Plan Act, 2021. The full text version of the FAQs is available below. These provide additional guidance on, among other things:

  • Whether an individual has had an “involuntary” termination, including employee-initiated

On April 8, 2021, Washington Governor Jay Inslee issued Proclamation 20-46.3, which modifies proclamations issued in 2020 that provide employment and benefit protections during the COVID-19 pandemic emergency for “high-risk employees.” (For purposes of the Proclamation, a “high-risk employee” is any employee that the Centers for Disease Control defines as being more likely to

On April 15, 2021, in response to the ongoing COVID-19 situation, the U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued a temporary deviation from the handwritten signature requirement for a limited list of tax forms, including elections under Section 83(b) of the Internal Revenue Code, allowing taxpayers and representatives to use electronic or digital signatures when signing

The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 includes a 100% federal subsidy of COBRA premiums (including the up-to-2% administrative fees) during the period of April 1, 2021, through September 30, 2021. Earlier this week, the Employee Benefits Security Administration published clarifying FAQs and model notices related to the COBRA subsidy. This update discusses the guidance

The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARPA) includes a 100% federal subsidy of COBRA premiums (including the up-to-2% administrative fees) during the period of April 1, 2021, through September 30, 2021. The subsidy applies to group health coverage typically subject to COBRA, except for health flexible spending accounts. This update summarizes the ARPA’s COBRA

The multiemployer pension plan system is facing a funding crisis with over 100 plans projected to become insolvent in the next 10 to 20 years. This rate of plan insolvency was projected to cause the collapse of the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation’s (PBGC’s) multiemployer benefit insurance fund. Insolvency of both underfunded multiemployer pension plans and

In late December, Congress passed the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 that included cafeteria plan relief but left many open questions regarding how the relief provisions should be implemented and administered. The IRS issued Notice 2021-15 on February 18 to provide much needed clarification on the CAA’s cafeteria plan provisions. In this update, we discuss some

With multiple states rolling out phased access to COVID-19 vaccines, many employers are considering whether they want to require employees to be vaccinated, how to encourage employee vaccinations, and the implications of vaccine policies for their businesses. Here are some of the top questions that Perkins Coie has received from its clients. Read the full