Weekly Dispatch: July 7, 2022

July 7, 2022


Retirement plans: Impact of fiduciary liability

In a traditional 401(k) plan, many plan administration tasks fall on the plan sponsor. These can include designing the plan, depositing contributions, keeping documents updated, complying with testing requirements, and providing required notices and information to plan participants. On top of running your business, all this extra work could be overwhelming. These are only a few of the duties plan sponsors oversee. However, they are personally liable for all the administrative tasks to ensure that the plan is IRS compliant. Efficiently managing this could be difficult, especially while running your business. When considering the duty of a fiduciary, you not only have to ensure that the plan is running well and compliant with IRS rules, but also operating in the best interest of its participants. This includes periodically benchmarking the plan to make sure fees are reasonable and monitoring the investment lineup to identify any poorly performing funds. The PIA 401(k) Plan—which is a benefit with PIA membership—is a multiple employer aggregation plan, so many businesses already are in the plan with their assets pooled together. This plan drastically reduces the sponsor’s fiduciary responsibility to the plan by delegating responsibilities to different service providers.

How did they insure the original Jurassic Park?

Have you ever wondered how the InGen Corp., managed to insure the original Jurassic Park? PIA Northeast’s Director of Government & Industry Affairs Bradford J. Lachut, Esq., examines the three species of dinosaurs that would be most likely to cause problems in the original Jurassic Park movie (i.e., velociraptors, the T-Rex and dilophosaurus) to see how the underwriting may have been determined. See if you agree with his assessment.

Conn.: FEMA awards $1.3M for 2018 storm recovery costs

The Federal Emergency Management Agency will be sending nearly $1.3 million to Connecticut to reimburse it for the administrative costs of recovering from the tornadoes and storms that struck the state on May 15, 2018. The Connecticut Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection will receive a total of $1,275,694 in federal funding through FEMA’s Public Assistance grant program to reimburse it for the costs of administering the Public Assistance grants that the state received to respond to and recover from the storm.

PIANJ priority bills pass state Legislature

Two bills passed the New Jersey state Legislature last week, which would impact the personal auto and commercial insurance marketplace, respectively. An auto limits bill (S-481), which eventually would increase the minimum auto limits required in a personal auto policy, was amended in the state Senate after it passed in the state Assembly. PIANJ is the only insurance association to support an increase in the minimum limits. Additionally, S-1368 would require business owners and rental owners to maintain certain liability insurance policies. PIANJ has long supported this legislation and it was integral in amending an earlier version of the bill to clarify the insurance requirements.

N.Y.: New law to help businesses access low-cost WC coverage

Gov. Kathy Hochul recently announced that she signed legislation (S.9096/A.10078) to restore New York businesses’ access to low-cost workers’ compensation coverage through the New York State Insurance Fund—New York’s largest workers’ compensation insurer. New York law requires businesses to secure workers’ compensation coverage, which most obtain through NYSIF or a private insurer. But unlike private insurers, NYSIF insures any employer that applies for coverage regardless of risk at the lowest possible cost to maintain a solvent fund. NYSIF may only cancel a policy for nonpayment of premium and until now was precluded from reissuing a policy to a business that owed it premium. Workers’ compensation is not only required by law, but essential to protecting New York’s workforce. PIANY supports this measure, which ensures businesses will have access to workers’ compensation coverage—even if they have a past amount due.

N.Y.: Sandy tax exemption application deadline extended

Gov. Hochul last week signed new legislation (S.8718/A.9424) to extend the deadline to apply for tax exemption on renovations to or the reconstruction of residential properties affected by Superstorm Sandy. The new law extends the deadline by two years, to March 1, 2024. Here are the applications for a tax exemption. The bill signing follows a surge in construction delays and mass materials shortages—due to the pandemic. This deadline extension will allow more homeowners affected by Superstorm Sandy to apply for a tax exemption.

N.Y.: Businesses may be eligible for COVID-19, tax program

Gov. Hochul recently announced an initial intake tool to help small businesses determine their eligibility for the COVID-19 Capital Costs Tax Credit Program. The $250 million COVID-19 Capital Costs Tax Credit Program will support small businesses, with 100 or fewer employees, that made investments to comply with emergency orders and regulations or to increase public safety in response to COVID-19.


NJPIAPAC opens the door to N.J. politics

New Jersey PIAPAC provides PIANJ members with much more than just donations to state political candidates. It provides election information, including how to register and vote by mail, and it keeps you updated on what’s going on in state politics, such as how we stack up against other New Jersey PACs and other updates. But most importantly, NJPIAPAC opens doors for PIANJ leaders to educate legislators about our industries key issues. Make sure you share about the importance of NJPIAPAC with your fellow agents by sharing our about PAC video.

Educating insurance agents

N.Y.: New classes that meet the New York State Department of Financial Services’ new CE requirements are available online and in private on-site sessions.


Next week: The PIWA Summer Reception returns

The PIWA Summer Reception will be live and in-person—Thursday, July 14, 2022, at Patrizia’s of Long Island, 1040 S. Broadway, Hicksville, NY 11801, from 5:30-7:30 p.m. Join your colleagues for a cocktail reception—open bar, hors d’oeuvres—and networking! Register today.

Register now

Thursday, July 14, 2022: PIWA Summer Reception

Thursday, July 28, 2022: NJYIP Summer Reception

Monday, Aug. 1, 2022: NY-YIP Golf Open

Monday, Sept. 12, 2022: PIANJ Golf Classic

Thursday, Sept. 29, 2022: Save the date: PIANH Symposium

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