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Monique Warren is a principal in the White Plains, New York, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. She counsels employers on employee benefits compliance and administrative matters, represents employers to government agencies, and prepares plan documents and related employee communications.

Monique's expertise includes health and welfare plans as well as retirement plans. She has extensive experience helping plan sponsors navigate COBRA, HIPAA, and other ERISA and Internal Revenue Code provisions and correct compliance issues. A significant part of her practice currently focuses on defending employers in federal investigations of their group health plans as well as assisting government contractors with fulfilling fringe benefit obligations. She also has extensive experience helping retirement plan sponsors comply with ERISA fiduciary requirements and the Code’s qualification requirements and correcting plan errors under the Department of Labor’s and Internal Revenue Service’s voluntary correction programs.

The Internal Revenue Service issued Revenue Ruling 2013-17 answering some, but not all, questions for employers in the wake of the US Supreme Court’s opinion that invalidated the federal law that confined marriage to a legal union between one man and one woman as husband and wife – United States v. Windsor, No. 12-307

The Department of Labor is allowing defined contribution retirement plan administrators to reset the timing for annual fee disclosures to participants (see our earlier blog post reminding readers of the disclosure requirement and contemplating possible relief). 

DOL has issued Field Assistance Bulletin 2013-02 announcing the temporary enforcement policy. The participant-level fee disclosure regulation, implemented last year

Employers that sponsor participant-directed individual account plans like 401(k)s and 403(b)s need to prepare for the annual disclosure requirement imposed on plan administrators under section 404 of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act. (See our earlier posts and article regarding the regulations that became effective last year.) 

Separate regulations required service providers to give plan administrators

A provision of the 2010 health care reform law requires employers to provide notices, by March 1, 2013, to all employees regarding the availability of health coverage options through the state-based exchanges created pursuant to that law. In January, the Department of Labor had announced delayed enforcement of the exchange coverage notice provision (which added Section

The Department of Labor, Health and Human Services and the Treasury collectively published new FAQs regarding the requirement to provide a summary of benefits and coverage (SBC) under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) (http://www.dol.gov/ebsa/faqs/faq-aca14.html#footnotes).

The FAQs include an updated SBC template and an updated sample completed SBC (available at cciio.cms.gov and www.dol.gov/ebsa/healthreform). 

Proposed regulations published on March 21, 2013 addressed not only the 90-day waiting period rule discussed below but also the eventual elimination of notices of creditable coverage under HIPAA’s preexisting condition exclusions rules.

The 2010 health care reform law prohibits group health plans from imposing preexisting condition exclusions, effective for plan years beginning on or