December 08 2015

The COLA Is Flat in 2016; IRS Limits Explained

In the qualified retirement plan world, there are limits on how much money may be contributed to a plan by an individual or a company.  There is also a cap on the wages that may be taken into account for an employee in determining contributions and b...

November 13 2015

PBGC Premiums to Rise Again; The Reason Will Make You Cry

At an industry conference in Washington, DC several years ago, I was sitting at the breakfast table griping about a new pension law that had been passed for what seemed like dubious reasons.  I threw up my hands and said, “I guess I just don’t unders...

August 26 2015

Don't Be in Stocks If You Need the Money Soon

The stock market has taken a beating recently. Over the four business days from August 20-25, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell by 354.63, 530.94, 588.40, and 204.91 points, respectively – a decline of 9.68% in all. Whether you are a personal or ...

August 05 2015

IRS: No More Lump Sum Buyouts for Vulnerable Retirees If We Can Help It

Think of a 75-year-old. Maybe it’s you, maybe it’s someone in your parents’ or grandparents’ generation. Let’s call the 75-year-old “Pat.” Imagine that Pat is receiving a steady payment of, say, $1,000 per month from a pension plan. These payments wi...

June 18 2015

Considering a 401(k) Plan for 2015?

If you are considering setting up a 401(k) plan for 2015, you may not have as much time as you think.  October 1st is the deadline for implementing a safe harbor 401(k) plan this year.  Safe harbor design – whether a match or nonelective contribution...

March 16 2015

PBGC Premiums: Prepare to Be Soaked

In the next few months, plans covered by the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) will find out how much they have to pay in 2015 for their annual premium.  The news will not be good.

December 25 2014

Don't miss these important retirement plan deadlines

Ho ho ho!  We deliver to your stocking today a list of deadlines posted by the IRS.  Some of these deadlines are as soon as December 31.

October 23 2014

New rules for cash balance plans offer flexibility

The IRS has issued final regulations for hybrid retirement plans, such as cash balance plans, that clarify and add flexibility about how an employer credits interest in such plans.  The final regulations clarify the definition of "market rate of retu...

August 15 2014

O Former Employee, Where Art Thou?

You may remember the hit CBS television series Without a Trace from the previous decade.  At the beginning of each episode, the FBI would learn of a person who had “gone missing.”  Anthony LaPaglia’s character, Jack Malone, and his team of FBI specia...

April 08 2014

It's Not Nice to Keep a Secret

A recent article in The Wall Street Journal touted the virtues of defined benefit pension plans for self-employed individuals and small business owners in general.  Defined contribution plans such as 401(k)s are sufficient for an owner looking to put...