HomeWebcastLatest Class Action Wave: Reasonability of Actuarial Factors in Pension Plans
Online CLE Actuarial Factors Pension Plans CLE

Latest Class Action Wave: Reasonability of Actuarial Factors in Pension Plans

Live Webcast Date: Thursday, May 30, 2019 from 12:00 pm to 1:30 pm (ET)
Class Action (CLE)Employee Benefits CLE & CPERecording

Online CLE Actuarial Factors Pension Plans

Join us for this Knowledge Group Online CLE Actuarial Factors Pension Plans Webinar. In recent months, we have seen a new wave of ERISA class action litigation challenging the reasonableness of actuarial factors used in pension plans.  A group of class action complaints have been filed against traditional pension designs.  These complaints allege the plans are using out-of-date mortality tables and interest assumptions to calculate optional forms of annuity and to reduce annuities for early commencement.  As a result, the suits claim that annuities paid to participants under these plans are subject to excessive actuarial reductions, improperly denying participants their full vested benefits.  The plaintiffs seek reformation of the plans’ terms, which is allegedly necessary to bring them into compliance with ERISA, recovery of past underpayments and resulting future increases in benefits.

In this 90-minute Webcast, a panel of distinguished professionals and thought leaders assembled by The Knowledge Group will discuss the implications of the cases that have been filed, the prospects for additional similar suits, prior case law regarding the reasonableness of actuarial factors, the magnitude of risk that the suits present, and the steps that plan sponsors should be taking now.  

Key topics include:

  • Plans that are affected
  • The actuarial factors and actuarial adjustments that have given rise to the complaints
  • The legal basis for evaluating the reasonableness of actuarial factors
  • How much deviation from current, “standard” actuarial factors is permissible?
  • Is it time to update your actuarial factors?
  • Is it sufficient to update factors prospectively?
  • The impact of Section 411(d)(6)’s anti-cutback protection
  • Statutes of limitation and plan-specified limitation periods
  • The applicability of the continuing violation theory
  • Other key defenses

Agenda

Mark D. WincekPartner
Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP

AND

Scott HittnerPartner
October Three Consulting

AND

Miguel EatonPartner
Jones Day

  • Plans that appear affected based on allegations in the filed cases
  • The specific actuarial factors and adjustments that have given rise to the complaints
  • The legal basis for evaluating the reasonableness of actuarial factors
  • How much deviation from current actuarial factors is permissible?
  • Should you update actuarial factors that still appear OK?
  • Accounting impact of updating plan factors
  • Advantages and disadvantages of fixed vs. variable updated factors
  • Evaluating options to address Section 411(d)(6)’s anti-cutback protection when updating
  • Is it sufficient to update factors prospectively?
  • Managing “serious consideration” issues when updating
  • Statutes of limitation and plan-specified limitation periods defenses
  • Does the “continuing violation” theory compromise this defense?
  • Other key defenses
  • The role of expert witnesses in actuarial factor litigation

Who Should Attend

  • Benefits Executives
  • Human Resource Executives
  • Benefits Consultants
  • Pension Actuaries
  • Inside ERISA Counsel
  • Outside ERISA Counsel
  • Company General Counsel

Preview Podcast

Please click the podcast below to hear the speakers discuss the key topics for this webcast.

Online CLE Actuarial Factors Pension Plans

Mark D. WincekPartner
Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP

AND

Scott HittnerPartner
October Three Consulting

AND

Miguel EatonPartner
Jones Day

  • Plans that appear affected based on allegations in the filed cases
  • The specific actuarial factors and adjustments that have given rise to the complaints
  • The legal basis for evaluating the reasonableness of actuarial factors
  • How much deviation from current actuarial factors is permissible?
  • Should you update actuarial factors that still appear OK?
  • Accounting impact of updating plan factors
  • Advantages and disadvantages of fixed vs. variable updated factors
  • Evaluating options to address Section 411(d)(6)’s anti-cutback protection when updating
  • Is it sufficient to update factors prospectively?
  • Managing “serious consideration” issues when updating
  • Statutes of limitation and plan-specified limitation periods defenses
  • Does the “continuing violation” theory compromise this defense?
  • Other key defenses
  • The role of expert witnesses in actuarial factor litigation

Online CLE Actuarial Factors Pension Plans

Online CLE Actuarial Factors Pension Plans

Mark D. WincekPartnerKilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP

MARK D. WINCEK is a Partner and the senior member of the Employee Benefits Practice Group of Kilpatrick Townsend. His practice concentrates on executive compensation, qualified plans and fiduciary matters, and it encompasses counseling, transactions and controversies, including the recent ERISA litigation regarding pension actuarial factors. Mr. Wincek is the author of the chapter on “SERPs and Excess Plans” in the BNA Books Section 409A Handbook, and his list of professional publications includes dozens of articles on compensation and benefits issues. In addition, Mr. Wincek is a former Adjunct Professor of Law at Georgetown University Law Center and a member of the Tax Section of the American Bar Association, where he served as Chairman of the Statutory Welfare Benefits Subcommittee (1986-1990). From 1976 to 1981, Mr. Wincek was on the staff of the U.S. House Ways and Means Committee, serving as Senior Subcommittee Counsel to the Ways and Means Oversight Subcommittee in 1980 and 1981. Since 2005, Mr. Wincek has been listed in Chambers USA: America’s Leading Business Lawyers for Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation Law, as a “Leading Individual (Employee Benefits)” and as a member of a highly-ranked Washington benefits practice. He also has been listed in The Best Lawyers in America for Employee Benefits Law since 2005, and he is ranked as a “leading expert” in the Legal 500 (Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation). He has repeatedly been listed as a Corporate Counsel “Top Lawyer” and a Washington “Super Lawyer,” and he has been named repeatedly to Super Lawyer’s list of the top 100 Washington attorneys (without regard to specialty). Based on an independent survey of Fortune 500 companies, Mr. Wincek was named to BTI’s Client Service All-Star Team. Mr. Wincek was also recognized by Legal Media Group in its Guides to the World's Leading Labor and Employment Lawyers.

Online CLE Actuarial Factors Pension Plans

Miguel EatonPartnerJones Day

Clients look to Miguel Eaton to guide them through employee benefits issues that present significant business challenges. Miguel began his career litigating ERISA and other issues and over the years expanded his practice to include counseling clients on benefits issues in M&A, cyber, and litigating pension and retiree health issues in bankruptcy.

A significant portion of Miguel's practice involves multiemployer plans including counseling contributing employers, litigating withdrawal liability and trustee deadlocks, and advising on M&A matters. He also advises benefit committees regarding participants' claims for pension, welfare, and disability benefits. Miguel's litigation experience includes defending breach of fiduciary duty class actions and retiree health cutback cases and companies being investigated by the Departments of Labor and/or Justice.

For several years, Miguel has served as the employer co-chair for various subcommittees of the  ABA Employee Benefits Committee and is a frequent speaker on ERISA, including being on faculty for the ABA’s Joint Committee on Employee Benefits and serving as a Senior Lecturing Fellow at Duke Law School where he teaches a seminar on ERISA. He is a two-sport college athlete. He played in the 1994 NCAA basketball tournament and is the 1996 National Collegiate Boxing Association National Champion (heavyweight).

Online CLE Actuarial Factors Pension Plans

Scott HittnerPartnerOctober Three Consulting

Scott Hittner is a Denver-based partner and Chief Actuary at October Three. He serves as an expert resource to October Three’s technical group and consulting team and has nearly 30 years of experience as a consulting actuary specializing in pension and other postemployment benefit plans.

Scott is a Fellow of the Society of Actuaries (FSA), an Enrolled Actuary (EA) under ERISA, a Fellow of the Conference of Consulting Actuaries (FCA) and a Member of the American Academy of Actuaries (MAAA). He has a B.S. in actuarial science from the University of Nebraska.


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Online CLE Actuarial Factors Pension Plans

Course Level:
   Intermediate

Advance Preparation:
   Print and review course materials

Method Of Presentation:
   On-demand Webcast

Prerequisite:
   General knowledge of ERISA class action litigation

Course Code:
   148185

NY Category of CLE Credit:
   Areas of Professional Practice

Total Credits:
    1.5 CLE

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About the Knowledge Group

The Knowledge Group

The Knowledge Group has been a leading global provider of Continuing Education (CLE, CPE) for over 13 Years. We produce over 450 LIVE webcasts annually and have a catalog of over 4,000 on-demand courses.

About the Knowledge Group

The Knowledge Group

The Knowledge Group has been a leading global provider of Continuing Education (CLE, CPE) for over 13 Years. We produce over 450 LIVE webcasts annually and have a catalog of over 4,000 on-demand courses.

Kilpatrick Townsend is a multi-practice international firm with more than 600 attorneys and professionals, with 20 offices in the United States and abroad. The firm provides clients with unsurpassed legal representation in the following areas:

  • Employee Benefits, Labor & Employment: Counseling, transactions, administrative advocacy, and litigation
  • Business and Finance: Including securities, mergers and acquisitions, tax, and commercial transactions
  • Intellectual Property: The full complement of IP procurement, counseling, and litigation
  • Construction and Infrastructure: All aspects of transactions and litigation
  • Litigation: Including insurance recovery, environmental, and complex business litigation

Kilpatrick Townsend serves clients around the world from the firm’s offices in Alaska, California, Colorado, District of Columbia, Georgia, New York, North Carolina, Texas, Washington, Shanghai, Stockholm, and Tokyo. The firm is committed to learning and furthering the business and legal goals of its clients.

Website: http://www.kilpatricktownsend.com

October Three was built around a refreshingly different approach to Defined Benefit (DB) plans. In an industry mired in confusion and overall skepticism, we saw an opportunity to create clarity and to build a new understanding about where the industry is headed and how an organization’s DB plan can evolve to deliver more.

How we do that is two-fold. First, we design solutions that fit both the urgent needs of today and the impending needs of the future. And we do so with openness and full transparency, granting customers a refreshing level of insight into their plans.

We know how to share our expertise in a way that’s easily understood. As Einstein said: “If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.” We’re experts in what we do. But we don’t show off what we know. Instead, we’re about communicating in a way that delivers clarity and garners long-term trust.

At the end of the day, we believe in treating our clients fairly and with respect. And we believe that by shedding light on alternative solutions in the DB arena, we can help our clients move from a sense of powerlessness and negativity to one of empowerment.

Website: https://www.octoberthree.com

MARK D. WINCEK is a Partner and the senior member of the Employee Benefits Practice Group of Kilpatrick Townsend. His practice concentrates on executive compensation, qualified plans and fiduciary matters, and it encompasses counseling, transactions and controversies, including the recent ERISA litigation regarding pension actuarial factors. Mr. Wincek is the author of the chapter on “SERPs and Excess Plans” in the BNA Books Section 409A Handbook, and his list of professional publications includes dozens of articles on compensation and benefits issues. In addition, Mr. Wincek is a former Adjunct Professor of Law at Georgetown University Law Center and a member of the Tax Section of the American Bar Association, where he served as Chairman of the Statutory Welfare Benefits Subcommittee (1986-1990). From 1976 to 1981, Mr. Wincek was on the staff of the U.S. House Ways and Means Committee, serving as Senior Subcommittee Counsel to the Ways and Means Oversight Subcommittee in 1980 and 1981. Since 2005, Mr. Wincek has been listed in Chambers USA: America’s Leading Business Lawyers for Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation Law, as a “Leading Individual (Employee Benefits)” and as a member of a highly-ranked Washington benefits practice. He also has been listed in The Best Lawyers in America for Employee Benefits Law since 2005, and he is ranked as a “leading expert” in the Legal 500 (Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation). He has repeatedly been listed as a Corporate Counsel “Top Lawyer” and a Washington “Super Lawyer,” and he has been named repeatedly to Super Lawyer’s list of the top 100 Washington attorneys (without regard to specialty). Based on an independent survey of Fortune 500 companies, Mr. Wincek was named to BTI’s Client Service All-Star Team. Mr. Wincek was also recognized by Legal Media Group in its Guides to the World's Leading Labor and Employment Lawyers.

Clients look to Miguel Eaton to guide them through employee benefits issues that present significant business challenges. Miguel began his career litigating ERISA and other issues and over the years expanded his practice to include counseling clients on benefits issues in M&A, cyber, and litigating pension and retiree health issues in bankruptcy.

A significant portion of Miguel's practice involves multiemployer plans including counseling contributing employers, litigating withdrawal liability and trustee deadlocks, and advising on M&A matters. He also advises benefit committees regarding participants' claims for pension, welfare, and disability benefits. Miguel's litigation experience includes defending breach of fiduciary duty class actions and retiree health cutback cases and companies being investigated by the Departments of Labor and/or Justice.

For several years, Miguel has served as the employer co-chair for various subcommittees of the  ABA Employee Benefits Committee and is a frequent speaker on ERISA, including being on faculty for the ABA’s Joint Committee on Employee Benefits and serving as a Senior Lecturing Fellow at Duke Law School where he teaches a seminar on ERISA. He is a two-sport college athlete. He played in the 1994 NCAA basketball tournament and is the 1996 National Collegiate Boxing Association National Champion (heavyweight).

Scott Hittner is a Denver-based partner and Chief Actuary at October Three. He serves as an expert resource to October Three’s technical group and consulting team and has nearly 30 years of experience as a consulting actuary specializing in pension and other postemployment benefit plans.

Scott is a Fellow of the Society of Actuaries (FSA), an Enrolled Actuary (EA) under ERISA, a Fellow of the Conference of Consulting Actuaries (FCA) and a Member of the American Academy of Actuaries (MAAA). He has a B.S. in actuarial science from the University of Nebraska.

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