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Pension Reforms in Surface Transportation Reauthorization Package

On July 6, the President signed into law a surface transportation reauthorization package which includes pension funding relief for defined benefit pension plans, increases in PBGC insurance premiums, changes in the PBGC organizational structure, an extension until December 31, 2021 for transfers of excess pension assets to retiree health accounts, and an expansion of those transfer rules to fund retiree group term life insurance accounts. The pension funding provisions set a floor and a maximum for the interest segment rates used for funding purposes, based on a historic 25-year average of those segment rates (effectively decreasing the current funding costs). The funding relief, however, does not apply for calculating lump sum distributions, limits on deductible contributions to single-employer plans, PBGC variable-rate premiums, financial reporting under Section 4010 of ERISA, and qualified transfers of excess pension assets to retiree medical accounts. A copy of the bill can be found here. A copy of the?áconference reports can be found here.

The lawyers of our Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation Practice Group are readily able to assist companies on a nationwide basis with implementing sophisticated benefit plans and providing answers to their most challenging compensation issues. Additionally, our lawyers are well aware of the daily employee benefits challenges facing companies of all sizes and are capable of helping in-house lawyers and human resources personnel with the day-to-day advice and guidance necessary to properly administer employee benefits plans.

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