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Church-plan status under increased scrutiny

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A growing number of lawsuits and some key court rulings are making it harder for church-affiliated defined benefit plans to be exempt from federal pension rules.

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The Great Pension Sell-Off: Should you take a lump sum or an insurer's annuity?

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Carl Monheit's former employer reliably mailed his monthly check to him for 17 years. A year and a half ago things changed. The Hackensack, New Jersey, resident, along with thousands of other retired managers, learned he would no longer be part of Verizon's pension plan. Instead, the telecommunications giant bought them an annuity.

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Your Company Just Tossed a Pension Hot Potato in Your Lap. What Do You Do?

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If you're lucky enough to have a claim on the $3 trillion-plus sitting in old-fashioned corporate pension plans, your retirement planning may soon get more complicated.

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Thought Secure, Pooled Pensions Teeter and Fall

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The pensions of millions of Americans are being threatened because of trouble in a part of the retirement world long considered so safe that no one gave it a second thought.

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Company pension plans are healthier, but they're still dying

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This should be good news: At a time when worry about the retirement security of American workers is rising, traditional pension plans finished 2013 in their best shape last year since the financial crisis of 2008. Yet that may only be setting the table for more corporations to stop offering them.

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House Approves Budget Agreement That Includes Hikes in PBGC Premiums

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Defined benefit plan pension insurance premiums would be increased by Congress for the second time in less than two years under a new budget compromise reached by the heads of the House and Senate Budget committees, with the premium provisions projected to cut federal spending by nearly $8 billion over 10 years. [PDF]

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Pension Rights Center Stands with Pensioners against Proposed Cuts

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WASHINGTON – The Pension Rights Center released a statement today cautioning Congress against supporting a proposal that “endorses the unprecedented and dangerous step of empowering pension plan trustees … to slash benefits of men and women who are alre

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Pension Advocates Raise Questions About IRS Rulings on Church Plan Status

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In the months since the Internal Revenue Service lifted a moratorium in 2011 on issuing private letter rulings on church plans, IRS has issued at least 13 rulings granting church plan status, including one conferring church plan status on a defined benefit pension plan sponsored by a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) unincorporated religious organization that had been paying pension insurance premiums to th

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Teamsters pension plan stuck in crisis

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The plight of the Teamsters’ Central States, Southeast & Southwest Pension Plan has been in the news lately and its prospects are not good.

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Do no harm: Protecting retirees in shaky pension plans

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We've all heard the physician's Hippocratic oath: "First, do no harm." But there's a similar, less-well-known principle in the world of pensions: First, do no harm to retirees.

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