Monthly Archives: June 2011

Department of Labor’s EBSA Proposes Extension to Align Applicability Dates for Retirement Plan Fee Disclosures

Last year, two significant sets of regulations were issued that will affect qualified plan fiduciary responsibility and administration.  Last July, interim final regulations were issued requiring retirement plan service providers to disclose detailed information regarding their fees and potential conflicts of interest to plan fiduciaries.  These service provider disclosures were scheduled to apply to plan contracts and arrangements for services on or after July 16, 2011.  Since those regulations were issued, there has been much discussion surrounding compliance with these rules, including whether a summary format of information might be necessary to help plan sponsors understand and know what to do with the financial information that will be disclosed by plan service providers.  The Department then announced earlier this year that it would extend the compliance deadline to January 1, 2012, but this wasn’t yet official.  In addition, participant-level fee disclosure regulations were issued on October 20, 2010 to be effective for plan years on or after November 1, 2011 with a 60-day transition period.  These rules would require plan administrator’s of 401(k) plans, for example,  to disclose certain plan and fee information to participants who direct their investments.  On June 1, 2011, the Department proposed making the January 1, 2012 extension of the service provider disclosures compliance date official, as well as extending the time a calendar year 401k plan has to furnish the initial participant-level fee disclosures to no later than April 30, 2012 (and up to May 15, 2012 with regard to quarterly statements) in order to provided additional time for compliance and coordination of the two efforts. 

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McDonald Hopkins law firm continues to expand: Labor and Employment attorney, Candace D. Randle, joins the Detroit office

McDonald Hopkins law firm continues to expand:
Labor and Employment attorney, Candace D. Randle,
joins the Detroit office

Detroit, Michigan, (June 2, 2011) –Candace D. Randle has joined the Detroit office of McDonald Hopkins as an associate in the law firm’s Labor and Employment Counseling and Litigation Practice. Randle is the twelfth attorney to join the Detroit office of McDonald Hopkins in the past 18 months.

Randle represents employers in a wide-range of labor and employment matters relating to equal employment issues, such as harassment, race, national origin, and sex discrimination, and state and federal regulatory matters, including wage and hour counseling and guidance. She represents clients in all aspects of charges of discrimination before the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and the Michigan Department of Civil Rights. Randle handles all aspects of employment litigation, including conducting and defending depositions, hearings and case evaluations, and settlement negotiations. Prior to joining McDonald Hopkins, Randle was with the Butzel Long law firm. Earlier, Randle served as a law clerk for the Hearings Division of the EEOC’s St. Louis District Office where she participated in administrative hearings and drafted judicial opinions.

Randle received her law degree with an Employment Law Certificate in 2008 from Saint Louis University School of Law. She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Wilberforce University in 1994. Randle is a member of the State Bar of Michigan, Oakland County Bar Association, Human Resources Association of Greater Detroit, and Society for Human Resource Management.

Randle can be reached at 248.220.1338 or crandle@mcdonaldhopkins.com.

About McDonald Hopkins
McDonald Hopkins, a business advisory and advocacy law firm with an 80-year history, has offices in Chicago, Cleveland, Columbus, Detroit, Miami, and West Palm Beach. The firm’s comprehensive legal services are provided by teams of specialized attorneys and professionals in areas such as business law, litigation, business restructuring and bankruptcy, estate planning, government affairs, healthcare, intellectual property, labor and employment, and mergers and acquisitions. Service and industry specialties are designed to meet the growing challenges that clients face in an increasingly competitive environment. The president of McDonald Hopkins is Carl J. Grassi. For more information about McDonald Hopkins, visitwww.mcdonaldhopkins.com.

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Are You Ready?

The ILN’s new website will be launched on June 14, 2011 and I can’t wait! It’s no longer going to be your typical law firm website, and both the ILN and our web designer/host, LexBlog are so excited for you to see the results.

Stay tuned…

 

Countdown To the ILN’s New Website!

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Andrej Rudanov made presentations at the conference of the Geriatrics Clinic of the Medical Academy, Lithuanian University of Health Sciences, held Šiauliai

Senior associate of TARK GRUNTE SUTKIENE Andrej Rudanov continues the series of presentations focused on legal aspects of dementia, legal protection of patients suffering from dementia, changes in protection of patients in different disease stages. On 31 May, he took part at the conference Urgent Dementia Issues organised by the Geriatrics Clinic of the Medical Academy,  University of Health Sciences, held in Šiauliai.

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OSHA Targets Manufacturers, Nursing Care Facilities, and Chemical Plants

by: Eric J. Conn

What do manufacturers, nursing homes, and chemical companies have in common?  They all represent industries receiving special enforcement scrutiny from today’s OSHA.

OSHA is targeting manufacturers under a major Recordkeeping Enforcement National Emphasis Program (Recordkeeping NEP).  OSHA launched the Recordkeeping NEP at the end of 2009, originally selecting inspection targets across a wide array of industries.  A senior OSHA official has explained that “there are several different goals here.  One is just to find out what’s going on.  Another is to send a message to companies – via penalties – that injury and illness book-cooking won’t go unpunished.”  However, the inspections were not yielding the significant enforcement actions that OSHA expected, so OSHA suspended the NEP, evaluated the data it had been collecting, and decided to re-focus the Recordkeeping NEP almost exclusively on manufacturers.  See this article describing the new manufacturing focus of the Recordkeeping NEP.  Since re-launching the NEP with this focus on manufacturers, OSHA has been finding the serious violations it expected, including a remarkable set of Recordkeeping citations against one manufacturer with a penalty exceeding $1.2 Million.  See the OSHA Press Release about this enforcement action.

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IRS Seeks Comment from Employers on Definition of Full Time Employee Under the Affordable Care Act

By: Kara Maciel and Adam Solander

Over a year after thePatient Protection and Affordable Care Act (“PPACA”) was signed into law, the Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) recently released much anticipated information on issues related to the calculations of full-time and full-time equivalent employees for determining when an employer may be subject to a penalty under PPACA. In Notice 2011-36 (“Notice”), the IRS is specifically seeking employer’s comments on several of the issues by June 17, 2011. For hospitality employers, who traditionally employ a large number of part-time, temporary, and seasonal workers, the Notice provides an excellent opportunity for employers to comment and potentially alter PPACA’s financial impact in 2014.       

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Third Circuit: Breach of Independent Contractor Agreement Provides Basis to Deny Request for Injunctive Relief

Will treating an individual as an employee rather than an independent contractor – when the parties have agreed to an independent contractor arrangement – preclude enforcement of a non-compete agreement? The Third Circuit Court of Appeals recently answered this question affirmatively, affirming a District Court Order denying an employer’s application for a preliminary injunction.

In Figueroa v. Precision Surgical, Inc., No. 10-4449 (April 12, 2011), Precision and Joseph Figueroa entered into an independent contractor agreement which contained a number of restrictive covenants, including a non-competition provision for a twenty-four month period following the expiration of the agreement. When Precision moved toward treating Figueroa as an employee rather than a contractor, Figueroa balked at the new arrangement and Precision terminated the agreement. Figueroa then commenced a lawsuit against Precision alleging that the restrictive covenants were unenforceable. Precision counter-claimed for injunctive relief, asserting that Figueroa had violated the agreement by working as an independent sales representative for one of its direct competitors.

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Andra Rubene and Ivars Grunte on return of M&A activity and corporate start-ups in Latvia, “RigaNOW!”

Ivars GrunteAndra Rubene

In the June 2011 issue Ivars Grunte, partner of TARK GRUNTE SUTKIENE and Andra Rubene, senior associate of TARK GRUNTE SUTKIENE, discuss return of M&A activity and corporate start-ups in Latvia.

Click here to read the publication.

 

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ILN Today Post

Aged Care Update

in this issue

Tightening the bond – Aged Care Amendment Bill 2011 (Cth) released

By Arthur Koumoukelis and Jessica Smythe of Gadens Lawyers, Sydney

As part of the Government’s health and hospital reform agenda to better protect accommodation bonds paid by residents of aged care facilities and improve the complaints scheme, the Minister for Mental Health and Ageing, Mark Butler, introduced the Aged Care Amendment Bill 2011 (Cth) (the Bill) to parliament on 27 May 2011.   read more

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