Incentive Compensation That is Never Subject to Income Tax – Too Good to Be True?


Clients frequently ask if they can provide incentive compensation to their employees and executives in a manner that gives them flexibility and drives performance, but receives coveted capital gains treatment. This usually sounds too good to be true. In most cases, you can defer or sometimes minimize income tax for employees (retirement plans, deferred compensation arrangements, stock appreciation rights, non-qualified stock options), but there is one tool that enables employees to skip income tax, FICA, and withholding altogether – well-designed and-well managed incentive stock options or “ISOs.” Continue reading this entry

Add One to the List: New York Prepares to Expand Paid Family Leave


New York employers should prepare to make changes to their family leave policies. During an August 29, 2018, debate, Gov. Andrew Cuomo indicated that he may soon sign into law a bill passed by the State Legislature on June 20, 2018, that adds bereavement leave to the list of qualified reasons to take job-protected, paid time off under New York’s Paid Family Leave Act.

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Parental Leave Benefits are Under Scrutiny – Be Sure Yours Don’t Discriminate!


As the pool of talented employees tightens, more and more employers are offering perks and benefits to lure the best and the brightest into their ranks. Offering generous benefits for working parents is one of the particularly hot trends at the moment, with paid time off chief among them. Companies offer a range of paid leave options to new parents, including pay for bonding time, medical appointments, adoption services, pay during Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) leave and for up to 40 weeks beyond FMLA leave, and much more.

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Labor Board Moves to Clear the Confusion on Joint Employment


On Friday, September 14, 2018, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) issued its Notice of Proposed Rulemaking in the latest attempt to address the “joint employer” standard under the National Labor Relations Act. The proposed rule states that a separate entity will be considered a joint employer “only if the two employers share or codetermine the employee’s essential terms and conditions of employment, such as hiring, firing, discipline, supervision, and direction.” In sum, this proposed rule would return the joint employer standard to longtime precedent.

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Non-Qualified Retirement Plans & Divorce: You May be Able to Honor DROs, But Should You?


You probably already know that employers are required to honor qualified domestic relations orders (commonly referred to as “QDROs”) regarding the division of qualified retirement plan benefits (such as 401(k) balances) when an employee gets divorced. However, many employers mistakenly assume that they must also honor domestic relations orders (“DROs”) related to nonqualified retirement plans when, in fact, they do not have such an obligation. Continue reading this entry