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Haynes and Boone Lawyers Repeat Strong Showing in D Magazine’s Best Lawyers List

DALLAS D Magazine has once again recognized Haynes and Boone, LLP lawyers in its annual “Best Lawyers of Dallas” list of top local legal talent. >>

Recent Publications

Inflation-Adjusted 2015 Figures for Estate and Gift Taxes

A number of tax figures are adjusted each year for inflation. This alert outlines the most significant adjustments for estate and gift taxes for 2015. >>

John M. Collins



2323 Victory Avenue
Suite 700
Dallas, 75219
T +1 214.651.5564
F +1 214.200.0719

John M. Collins

John Collins has more than 30 years experience in several areas of tax practice, including estate planning, family wealth planning, charitable organizations, and employee benefits and executive compensation matters. He has been recognized as one of the best trusts and estate lawyers in Dallas by D Magazine (2010-2014, and multiple prior years), a Texas Super Lawyer by Texas Monthly Magazine (2003-2014), a Five Star Wealth Manager (2009-2013), a top-rated lawyer by ALM and Martindale-Hubbell, and he is listed in the Best Lawyers in America in Employee Benefits Law and Trusts and Estates (2005-2015). John is AV® Peer Review Rated Preeminent by Martindale-Hubbell® Law Directory.

John is a contributor to Haynes and Boone's Practical Benefits Lawyer blog, which discusses issues and developments in the areas of employee benefits and executive compensation.

Selected Client Representations

  • Estate and personal tax planning for individuals and families, including succession planning for closely-held businesses, establishment of charitable trusts and foundations, and family limited partnerships.
  • Family wealth planning, including the numerous sophisticated strategies to minimize estate, gift and generation skipping transfer taxes.
  • Representing public charities and private foundations in connection with governance issues, unrelated business taxable income (UBTI), conflicts of interest, and other tax and exemption issues.
  • Employment agreements, severance agreements, code section 162(m) and golden parachute issues, and incentive bonus plans.
  • Design and implementation of all types of equity compensation plans, including stock options, restricted stock, ESOPs, qualified employee stock purchase plans, phantom stock, and stock appreciation rights.
  • Planning transactions involving the use of ESOPs in corporate finance and restructuring, representing and advising fiduciaries, and representing borrowers and lenders in pension plan transactions.

Selected Representative Experience

$1.5 Billion Capital Commitment Subscription Financing - Major U.S. Financial Institution
Served as lead counsel for lead arranger and administrative agent in arranging a $1.5 billion capital commitment subscription financing.

Representation of Boards of Directors in Acquisition of Energy Company
Represented the Boards of Directors of both Hassie Hunt Exploration Company and Hassie Hunt Production Company in connection with the $4.5 billion acquisition of Hunt Petroleum Corporation and the Hassie Hunt Companies by Ft. Worth-based XTO Energy.


  • State Bar of Texas
  • State Bar of California
  • Fellow, American College of Trust and Estate Counsel
  • Board Member, Methodist Health System (Dallas)

Online Publications

12/05/2014 - Inflation-Adjusted 2015 Figures for Estate and Gift Taxes
A number of tax figures are adjusted each year for inflation. This alert outlines the most significant adjustments for estate and gift taxes for 2015.

11/20/2013 - Year End Planning Tip: 3.8% Surtax on Investment Income
As the end of 2013 draws near, taxpayers should consider the effect of the new 3.8% surtax on investment income.

09/16/2013 - Reminder to File Gift (and GST) Tax Returns by October 15, 2013
If you made gifts in calendar year 2012 that should be reported on a federal gift tax return (Form 709) and you extended the deadline to file your gift tax return, the deadline to submit a timely-filed return is October 15, 2013.

04/09/2013 - Transfers in 2012 and Future Years
This alert outlines the gift tax return requirement for 2012 transactions and the use of "defined value" gifts and sales.

01/09/2013 - The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012: Congress Finally Acts - Good News/Bad News for Estate Planning
After all of the sand had run out of the hourglass, Congress finally passed (and the President signed) a compromise tax bill to avoid very substantial income tax increases on taxpayers with income under $400,000 ($450,000 for joint filers).

02/16/2012 - Effective Ways to Use Gift Tax Exemption
Most of our clients are aware that Congress dramatically increased the individual gift tax exemption from $1,000,000 to $5,120,000 in 2012, and that the exemption is scheduled to revert to $1,000,000 on January 1, 2013 unless Congress takes some action. If this reduction in the gift tax exemption occurs, clients may lose an opportunity to remove a substantial amount of assets from their estates, and, with it, the opportunity to reduce estate taxes payable by their children.

12/19/2011 - ’Tis the Season for LP/LLC Year-End Planning
This alert includes a list of year-end administrative issues for Texas limited partnerships and limited liability companies (“LP/LLC”).

12/15/2011 - Tax Planning for a Happy Holiday Season
As the end of the year approaches, it is a good time to consider actions that may lower your tax bill this year and possibly next year.

11/15/2011 - Rumor Has It: Speculation on Changes to Federal Gift Tax Exemptions
The Congressional Super Committee (the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction) continues to meet in Washington, D.C., with the goal of reducing the country’s deficit through program cuts and revenue increases. There have been several unsubstantiated rumors regarding proposed changes to the estate and gift tax laws.

07/06/2011 - The U.S. Supreme Court Addresses Application of the Fiduciary Exception to the Attorney-Client Privilege in the Trust Context
On June 13, 2011, the Supreme Court issued its opinion in United States v. Jicarilla Apache Nation, 564 U.S. ___ (2011), holding that the fiduciary exception to the attorney-client privilege does not apply to the United States government’s administration of Indian trusts.

06/08/2011 - Increased Gift Exemption - New Opportunities?
This alert outlines opportunities for maximizing the gift tax exemption in 2011 and 2012.

06/02/2011 - IRS Focusing on Unrelated Business Taxable Income
The IRS has apparently increased its focus on unrelated business taxable income (“UBTI”) of tax-exempt organizations. At a conference last month, IRS officials indicated they are looking closely at UBTI in all contexts with respect to exempt organizations, including conducting a long-term study on college and university treatment of UBTI.

03/07/2011 - IRS Initiatives on the Horizon for Tax-Exempt Organizations in 2011
The Exempt Organizations Office (“EO”) of the IRS recently released a list of 2011 initiatives, including international activities and compliance. This alert outlines some of these items.

02/08/2011 - Estate and Gift Taxes in 2011 - New Planning Opportunities
The last minute compromise which averted the expiration of the Bush tax cuts included a two-year modification of the estate, gift, and generation-skipping taxes. 

01/24/2011 - Increased Filing Threshold for Form 990-N
In prior years, certain tax-exempt organizations whose gross receipts did not normally exceed $25,000 were exempt from filing the standard Form 990. Now, this threshold is $50,000, and for tax years beginning on or after January 1, 2010, such organizations must submit a Form 990-N “e-Postcard” annually (rather than the Form 990-EZ or Form 990 required of larger organizations).

01/19/2011 - Long-Term Residents - Taxed for Going Home
Marriage has become as globalized as business today. When one spouse is a non-citizen, moving the couple's residence outside the U.S. or losing permanent resident status can have significant income tax and gift tax consequences.

12/13/2010 - FLASH - December 9 Senate Estate Tax Proposal, Part II
If the generation-skipping transfer tax (“GST tax”) provisions of the proposed Tax Bill remain unchanged, the most significant year-end tax planning opportunity is the ability to make gifts to trusts for grandchildren and great-grandchildren without imposition of the GST tax and without utilizing any of your GST tax exemption.

12/10/2010 - FLASH - December 9 Senate Estate Tax Proposal
The Senate introduced an amendment to the House Tax Bill on December 9, 2010 that makes significant changes in estate, gift, and generation-skipping tax rules for this year (2010), and for the next two years. This alert outlines the most significant estate, gift, and generation-skipping tax features of the Tax Bill.

12/09/2010 - Year-End Limited Partnership/Limited Liability Company Administrative Considerations
This alert lists a number of administrative and compliance issues for Texas limited partnerships or limited liability companies (“LP/LLC”) that you might consider as December 31 approaches.

12/08/2010 - Do You Know Which 990 to File for 2010…And Will You Have the Necessary Information?
Those who have filed – or at least reviewed – the “new” Form 990 since it was revised in 2008 are well aware of its comprehensive nature.

11/29/2010 - 2010 Tax Planning - to Gift or not to Gift
As 2010 is nearing an end, there are several gift options to consider. Lower interest rates, depressed values and lower gift tax risk make gifts or sales to younger generations more attractive in 2010.

10/06/2010 - Traps for the Unwary - The Risks of Fundraising
Charitable fundraising activities in multiple states - and even in multiple cities, municipalities, and counties within Texas - can potentially create a compliance risk. Although not regulated by the IRS, many state and/or local authorities have adopted charitable solicitation registration and reporting requirements. In addition, the revised Form 990 requires a disclosure regarding compliance with state rules.

08/25/2010 - Traps for the Unwary - Tips to Ensure Enforceability of Charitable Pledges
When a donor attempts to cancel or withdraw from a charitable pledge, many organizations choose not to enforce the pledge in the spirit of donor and public relations. However, it is important to understand that charitable pledges can be legally enforceable obligations. This alert provides a summary of Texas law regarding enforceability of pledges.

07/29/2010 - One-Time Filing Relief for Failure to File Forms 990
Small organizations at risk of losing their tax-exempt status for failure to file annual returns for 2007-2009 (including the Form 990-N or “e-Postcard,” required for organizations whose annual gross receipts are normally $25,000 or less) can maintain their tax-exempt status by filing returns by October 15, 2010.

05/24/2010 - Health Reform: 2011 Design Considerations
Many employers are already planning revisions to their medical plans for 2011. However, under health reform, if “grandfathered plans” (generally plans with at least one participant on March 23, 2010) make changes in their benefit structure, they may lose “grandfathered” status. This article answers some of employers' most pressing questions.

05/06/2010 - Employers May Offer Coverage of Children up to Age 26 Now
Although healthcare reform does not require group health plans to provide coverage for children up to age 26, without regard to marital or student status, until the first plan year beginning on or after September 23, 2010, many insurers are now offering employers with fully insured plans the opportunity to continue the health coverage of children who would otherwise lose coverage this year. This alert describes how employers with self-insured plans also may provide such coverage to children up to age 26 before it is otherwise legally required.

05/03/2010 - Traps for the Unwary - Loans to Directors and Officers
With increased scrutiny and regulation by Congress and the Internal Revenue Service, it is becoming more important for non-profits to focus on compliance with both federal and state rules.

04/08/2010 - Healthcare Reform: What You Need to Do Now and in the Future
This alert summarizes the major provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (“PPACA”) and the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010 (together with the PPACA, the “Act”) that will impact employers and their group health plans (“GHPs”).

04/01/2010 - Elimination of Advance Ruling Process for Public Charities
Although the regulations eliminating the advance ruling process have been in place since the end of 2008, we continue to receive questions from public charity clients regarding the need to prove public support after an organization’s first five tax years.

03/19/2010 - New Model Notices Reflect Latest Extension of COBRA Subsidy
The Department of Labor issued new model notices that reflect the most recent extension of the COBRA subsidy, which covers involuntary terminations that occur through March 31, 2010. The updated model notices are summarized in this alert.

03/18/2010 - Warning: Trusts in Texas May Be Subject To Texas Franchise Tax!
The Texas franchise tax (also known as the “margin tax”) is so expansive that it can apply to private trusts administered in Texas.

03/12/2010 - COBRA Subsidy Extension - Déjà vu, but much more…
Once again, Congress has extended the period during which an individual must be involuntarily terminated (as defined for purposes of the COBRA subsidy, an “Invol Term”) to be eligible for the COBRA subsidy. Invol Terms occurring through March 31, 2010 will be eligible for the COBRA subsidy. This change is effective retroactively, so that those persons with an Invol Term on March 1, 2010 are still eligible for the COBRA Subsidy.

03/09/2010 - Texas Business Organizations Code Now Applicable to Non-Profit Corporations
The Texas Business Organizations Code (the “TBOC”) – enacted in 2003 and generally effective January 1, 2006 – combined the laws found in a number of Texas statutes (including the Texas Non-Profit Corporation Act and the Texas Unincorporated Non-Profit Association Act), standardized filing requirements and fees for Texas entities, made other substantive changes, and implemented new terminology.

02/17/2010 - Issues on the IRS Horizon for Tax-Exempt Organizations in 2010
As the tax-exempt environment continues to become increasingly complex and focused on compliance and governance, it becomes more important to be aware of issues significant to the IRS. We have highlighted below a few of the issues on the IRS’ radar for 2010.

02/04/2010 - Deadline for Compliance with the HITECH Act Approaching
The Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act (the “HITECH Act”) makes significant changes to the privacy and security requirements of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996, as amended (“HIPAA”). Group health plans and other covered entities must comply with the HITECH Act by February 17, 2010.

01/29/2010 - DOL Issues Final Safe Harbor Rules for Timely Deposits of Participant Contributions and Loan Repayments
The U.S. Department of Labor (“DOL”) issued final regulations, effective January 14, 2010, that (1) clarify that the contribution timing rules apply to plan loan repayments, and (2) provide a safe harbor for depositing participant contributions (including loan repayments) to employee benefit plans with fewer than 100 participants on the first day of the plan year.

01/28/2010 - IRS Issues 409A Document Correction Program: The Six Month Payment Delay for Key Employees (second in a series)
As described in an earlier alert, the IRS has announced a document correction program covering certain failures to comply with Section 409A of the Internal Revenue Code (“Section 409A”), which contains tax rules for nonqualified deferred compensation arrangements.

01/19/2010 - Model Notices and Additional Guidance Issued on COBRA Subsidy Extension
The Department of Labor recently issued model notices for employers to use under the COBRA subsidy extension, and the Internal Revenue Service issued additional guidance for an employer claiming on its federal employment tax return (Form 941) the credit for 2009 retroactive coverage arising from the subsidy extension for those individuals who had otherwise exhausted the subsidy period.

01/13/2010 - IRS Issues 409A Document Correction Program: Immediate Action May Be Needed
The IRS has issued a Notice that describes a document correction program covering certain failures to comply with Section 409A of the Internal Revenue Code (“409A”). 409A contains tax rules for nonqualified deferred compensation arrangements. While this IRS program offers employers welcome relief from inadvertent drafting mistakes and other failures to conform applicable documents to the requirements of 409A, it also raises some additional concerns.

01/11/2010 - Estate, Gift, and Generation-Skipping Tax Confusion
The transfer tax situation for 2010 could hardly be more confusing. This alert summarizes issues related to making transfers to children or grandchildren in the current tax environment.

12/29/2009 - COBRA Subsidy Extended - Prompt Action Required (Updated)
On December 19, 2009, the Department of Defense Appropriations Act of 2010 (the “Act”) extended the COBRA continuation coverage subsidy, which originally was due to expire at the end of 2009. While the mechanics of the COBRA subsidy generally remain unchanged, the Act expands the coverage previously provided under the COBRA subsidy.

12/22/2009 - Year-End Limited Partnership/Limited Liability Company Administrative Considerations
Here is a compiled list of administrative issues for owners of Texas limited partnerships or limited liability companies (“LP/LLC”) to consider as December 31 approaches. Although some of these issues are not necessarily time-sensitive, year-end is a good time to consider whether your entity is in compliance with state and federal requirements.

12/17/2009 - Tax Planning for a Happy New Year
As the end of the year approaches, it is a good time to consider actions that may lower your tax bill this year and possibly next year as well. Year-end tax planning could be especially beneficial this year because several tax breaks will not be around next year unless Congress acts to extend them.

12/08/2009 - Year-End Changes Needed for Some 162(m) Performance-Based Compensation Plans
Publicly held corporations may need to adopt an amendment by December 31, 2009 for certain performance-based compensation plans and agreements, including incentive compensation and equity plans and executive employment agreements.

12/07/2009 - There's Still Time! Correct Code Section 409A Violations By December 31, 2009
Employers have until December 31, 2009 to take advantage of opportunities to avoid the 20% and other penalty taxes that otherwise would be imposed by Section 409A of the Internal Revenue Code. We recommend employers review all their plans and agreements that are subject to Section 409A, including nonqualified deferred compensation, severance, change of control plans and agreements, and employment agreements.

11/03/2009 - 2010 Conversion of a Traditional IRA to a Roth IRA
Currently, only taxpayers with modified adjusted gross income of $100,000 or less (who are not married filing separately) may convert a traditional IRA to a Roth IRA. Beginning January 1, 2010, the $100,000 limitation will be eliminated, and all taxpayers (including married taxpayers filing a separate return) may make such a conversion.

10/29/2009 - Estate Tax Uncertainty Continues
With nine weeks left in 2009, the fate of the federal estate tax remains unsettled. If Congress does not act before 2010, the estate tax will be repealed for one year (the gift tax continues in effect with the current $1,000,000 exemption), then the estate tax will be restored on January 1, 2011 with a $1,000,000 per taxpayer exemption and a top marginal rate of 55% (except for estates between $10,000,000 and about $20,000,000, with a top marginal rate of 60%).

10/28/2009 - IRS Provides Guidance on Waiving 2009 Required Minimum Distributions
In Notice 2009-82, the IRS announced that plan sponsors must make decisions relating to the waiver of 2009 required minimum distributions (“RMDs”) for defined contribution plans, such as 401(k) plans, by November 30, 2009.

10/27/2009 - Rollovers of 2009 Required Minimum Distributions
This alert provides updated information on requirements for 2009 required minimum distributions (RMDs) from IRAs and qualified defined contribution plans, including 401(k) plans.

10/13/2009 - IRS Issues Final Regulations on Defined Benefit Plan Funding Requirements and Benefit Restrictions
Last week the IRS released final regulations covering most aspects of the minimum funding requirements and funding-based benefit restrictions imposed on single-employer defined benefit plans by the Pension Protection Act of 2006. These regulations generally apply for plan years beginning on or after January 1, 2010, but can be relied upon before that date. Some plan sponsors may need to take immediate action in light of the regulations.

09/18/2009 - New Health Plan Privacy Notice Requirements Under HITECH Act
The Department of Health and Human Services (“HHS”) recently issued an interim final rule (the “Rule”) under the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (“HITECH”) Act explaining the notification requirements for breaches of protected health information that has not been encrypted or destroyed (“Unsecured PHI”). Employer-sponsored health plans should immediately review and revise their HIPAA privacy policies and procedures to ensure that they adequately address the Rule’s requirements for investigating and reporting breaches of Unsecured PHI. The new requirements are effective for breaches occurring on or after September 23, 2009.

08/14/2009 - Employers Should Be on the Lookout for Common Retirement Plan Errors
The Internal Revenue Service recently published a list of common recurring mistakes it sees in large case audits of qualified retirement plans and in submissions under its Voluntary Correction Program. This list provides employers with a useful checklist for reviewing the operations of their qualified retirement plans.

07/31/2009 - Traps for the Unwary in the Non-Profit Sector - Fundraising
With increased scrutiny and regulation by Congress and the Internal Revenue Service, it is becoming more important for non-profits to focus on compliance with both federal and state rules, including those regulating fundraising and solicitation. Whether conducting a raffle, holding galas or other events, or soliciting corporate sponsorships, seemingly ordinary fundraising activities can raise a number of tax and legal issues.

06/18/2009 - Congressional Climate: Estate Tax Rates, Short-Term GRATs, and FLP Discounts
While we still have not seen a serious proposal to make major changes to the federal estate tax exemption and rates, pending proposals would prohibit short-term grantor retained annuity trusts (“GRATs”) and reduce or eliminate certain valuation discounts on transfers of minority interests in closely-held entities, such as family limited partnerships (“FLPs”).

05/20/2009 - Deadline for Complying with Medicare Secondary Payer Reporting Rules Approaching
This alert outlines new reporting requirements under the Medicare Secondary Payer rules that apply to all liability insurance plans (including self-insurance), no-fault insurance plans, and workers' compensation plans, including non-subscribers to the Texas Workers' Compensation Act beginning on July 1, 2009.

05/06/2009 - Restructuring Compensation During Economic Challenges
Employers are facing a number of economic and financial challenges. Some employers have considered restructuring their compensation arrangements with employees as an alternative to avoid a reduction in force or layoffs. Restructuring of compensation packages raises a number of issues. 

04/16/2009 - Proposed Changes to Federal Estate Tax Laws
This alert from Haynes and Boone's Private Client Group lawyers provides an overview of two proposed changes to federal estate tax laws: the Baucus Bill and an amendment to President Obama's budget plan.

04/16/2009 - Proceed with Caution - New COBRA Subsidy Notices Pose Risks to Employers
Employers are working frantically to comply with the new COBRA subsidy requirements of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (the “Act”). However, the rush to compliance poses significant dangers if employers rely on the guidance issued by the Internal Revenue Service and Department of Labor without careful review and use the Department of Labor sample notices without modification.

03/27/2009 - Significant Changes in the Health Data Privacy for Group Health Plans and their Business Associates
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (the “Act”) broadens the HIPAA privacy and security protections that apply to protected health information (“PHI”) and imposes new requirements on group health plans and their business associates. Under the Act, certain HIPAA privacy and security requirements now directly apply to business associates as if they were covered entities.

02/27/2009 - Guidance and Relief for Deferred Compensation Arrangements of Certain Foreign Corporations and Partnerships
The Internal Revenue Service has issued interim guidance on deferred compensation paid to U.S. taxpayers by certain foreign corporations and partnerships considered to be “tax-indifferent entities.” To read more about Internal Revenue Code (“Code”) Section 457A click here.

02/19/2009 - Stimulus Bill Expands COBRA Benefits
The “Stimulus Bill,” signed Tuesday February 17, 2009, lowered the cost of COBRA continuation coverage for employees whose employment was or is involuntarily terminated on or after September 1, 2008 and before January 1, 2010, and their eligible dependents (together referred to as “Assistance Eligible Individuals”). In addition, those Assistance Eligible Individuals who did not timely elect COBRA are given another opportunity to elect that coverage, although their total period of COBRA coverage generally is not extended.

02/18/2009 - House Bill Attacks Valuation Discounts for Family Entities
Under current law, when an individual transfers a minority interest in a closely-held entity, appraisers often apply significant discounts to the value of the business because there is no readily available market to sell the interest and the owner has no control over the entity (including when and if distributions are made). An estate tax bill was recently introduced in the House of Representatives (HR 436, Pomeroy (D-ND)) that would restrict estate and gift tax benefits associated with closely-held entities, including family limited partnerships (“FLPs”).

02/13/2009 - Required Minimum Distributions Suspended for 2009
Congress has temporarily suspended the law requiring minimum distributions from IRAs and qualified defined contribution plans, including 401(k) plans (the Worker, Retiree, and Employer Recovery Act of 2008 (the “Act”)). The Act suspends for one year (2009) the tax on individuals age 70½ and older who do not take the required minimum distributions from these retirement accounts.

02/03/2009 - Legislation Requiring Investment Fund Registration Introduced in the U.S. Senate
On January 29, 2009, Senators Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Carl Levin (D-Michigan) introduced the Hedge Fund Transparency Act of 2009 (the “Act”) in the United States Senate with the stated purpose of imposing more extensive regulatory oversight of hedge funds. However, the bill is not limited to hedge funds; it generally would apply to, and dramatically impact, all private funds (including private equity and venture capital funds) that rely on an exemption from registration under Section 3(c)(1) or Section 3(c)(7) of the Investment Company Act of 1940, as amended (the “Company Act”).1

12/15/2008 - Year End Tax Planning for a Happy Holiday Season
As the end of the year approaches, it is a good time to consider actions that may lower your income tax bill this year and possibly next year as well. 2008 year-end tax planning is a bigger challenge than usual due to the substantial declines in the stock market, the difficult economic climate, and the possibility of tax legislation next year. However, Congress has enacted a series of tax laws that could benefit most taxpayers in 2008.

10/27/2008 - Charitable Contributions from IRAs Under the Tax Extenders and Alternative Minimum Tax Relief Act of 2008
Congress finally acted to extend a number of individual tax benefits that expired at the end of 2007, including the opportunity to make direct, non-taxable transfers from an individual retirement account (“IRA”) to certain charities.

“Bailout Bill” Places Strict Limits on Executive Pay of Participating Financial Institutions
The Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 (the “Act”), which establishes the Troubled Assets Relief Program (“TARP”), imposes strict new limits on executive compensation, including limits on incentive and severance pay, on certain financial institutions that participate in TARP.

Massachusetts Revises Employer Fair Share Contribution Requirement

10/07/2008 - Deferred Compensation Elections & Refund of Taxes Paid on Sale of Demutualized Insurance Company Stock
This Alert discusses several issues which may be of interest to you. First, the Alert discusses a rule permitting employees who previously made deferred compensation elections to change their elections prior to January 1, 2009. The Alert also discusses the receipt of insurance company stock due to demutualization of a "mutually owned" insurance company.

09/16/2008 - Significant Changes Imposed In Pension Plan Valuation of Alternative Investments

New Disclosure Requirements for Participant-Directed Individual Account Plans

Updated Medicare Part D Notices 2008

04/01/2008 - Estate Tax Reform Update
It is only 21 months until the federal estate tax is repealed – for one year – and 33 months from reduction of the estate tax exemption and a 22-33% increase in the estate tax rate. Unless Congress takes action soon, planning for most families with assets exceeding $2 million will continue to be challenging. Below is a brief summary of the current law and a recent update on possible congressional action.

03/10/2008 - SEC's Notice and Access and ERISA 404(c)
ERISA 404(C) issues raised under SEC's"Notice and Access" proxy statement rules.


02/07/2008 - PLR Regarding Section 162(m)

01/10/2008 - Health Law: 2007 Highlights and Reminders for 2008

11/07/2007 - Non-Profit Alert: Upcoming IRS 501 (c)(3) Workshops
The Internal Revenue Service will offer one-day workshops for small and mid-sized 501(c)(3) exempt organizations in 2007 and 2008. The workshops are designed for administrators, volunteers, and tax practitioners who are responsible for tax compliance. Registration is on a first-come, first-served basis (limited to 200 attendees per workshop), and the non-refundable cost is $45 (including a text and other IRS forms and publications).

10/31/2007 - New Beneficiary Notice Requirements - How Does This Affect Your Planning?
Prompted by an executor’s alleged misappropriation of funds from several estates, the Texas Legislature recently adopted a requirement that beneficiaries receive notice that a Will has been probated. Previously, only charities and governmental entities were required to receive notice. Now, new Section 128A of the Probate Code directors an executor to notify all Will beneficiaries and, in some cases, Living Trust beneficiaries.

10/23/2007 - IRS and Treasury Department Extend Section 409A Deadlines One More Year!

09/12/2007 - IRS Announces Limited Extension of Section 409A Compliance Deadline

04/11/2007 - 409A Final Regulations

12/22/2006 - President Bush Signs Bill Permitting One Time Rollovers to Health Savings Accounts

12/22/2006 - IRS Issues Guidance on Reporting Section 409A Deferred Compensation

12/22/2006 - Diversification Notice and Pension Benefit Statement Guidance

11/27/2006 - New Foundation and Charity Rules
Major new charitable organization rules in a Pension Act? In this case, yes - the Pension Protection Act of 2006 (the “Act”), recently signed by President Bush, changes a number of Internal Revenue Code provisions governing charitable organizations and their donors. This Alert briefly describes four of the changes that may be of the most interest to our clients and other friends.

Zeroed Out Grantor Retained Annuity Trusts "GRATs"

10/05/2006 - IRS and Treasury Department Extend Section 409A Deadlines One More Year!

09/25/2006 - Plan Fees and Expenses The Next Wave of Lawsuits Has Begun

08/21/2006 - Qualified Plan Rollovers and Charitable Contributions from IRAs
The Pension Protection Act of 2006 (the “Act”) just signed by the President has something for everyone. Although it does not contain any of the hotly debated estate and gift reforms, it offers a limited opportunity to make direct, nontaxable transfers from an individual retirement account (“IRA”) to certain charities, permits transfers from qualified plans to IRAs for beneficiaries other than spouses, and locks in current 401(k) deferral limits...

07/20/2006 - New Guidance on Using Debit/Credit Cards with HRAs and FSAs

06/14/2006 - Recent Health Plan Prescription Drug Developments

06/01/2006 - New Law Impacts 2006 Income Tax Liability of U.S. Citizens/Residents Working Abroad

05/19/2006 - Supreme Court Revisits Subrogation

01/23/2006 - SECTION 409A NEWS ALERT: Section 409A Stock Valuation Guidance For Privately-Held Companies

01/17/2006 - Health Plan Update

01/04/2006 - SECTION 409A NEWS: Stock Valuation Guidance and Section 409A Technical Corrections

01/01/2006 - Directors of Non-Profit Corporations: Liabilities

12/15/2005 - IRS Surprises Employers by Suspending Reporting and Witholding Requirements Under Code Section 409A

11/04/2005 - SECTION 409A NEWS: Separation Pay Exclusions

10/21/2005 - SECTION 409A NEWS: 2005 Action Items

10/04/2005 - Nonqualified Deferred Compensation Guidance: IRS Proposed Regulations Provide Relief Until 2007

08/08/2005 - How Long Do Employees Have to Elect COBRA Coverage?

06/21/2005 - DOL and SEC Tell Pension Plan Fiduciaries to Assess Third Party Consultants

06/07/2005 - Hidden Effects of the Medicare Prescription Drug Improvement and Modernization Act's Regulations

06/01/2005 - New Grace Period Permitted for Cafeteria Plan Flexible Spending Accounts

03/10/2005 - New Notice of Rights Under the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act of 1994

03/07/2005 - IRS Issues Executive Compensation Audit Guidelines: What Employers Need To Do Now

01/31/2005 - The Automatic Rollover Rules

01/14/2005 - Nonqualified Deferred Compensation Plan Guidance Under American Jobs Creation Act 04 and Notice 05-1

Understanding the Nonqualified Deferred Compensation Guidance

12/29/2004 - Nonqualified Deferred Compensation Guidance Brings Good News

12/28/2004 - USERRA Modifications

12/01/2004 - Deferred Compensation: Preparing for the Changes

09/07/2004 - Final Incentive Stock Option Regulations

06/01/2004 - HIPAA Privacy Compliance

03/01/2004 - Privacy Regulation Compliance Date Looms Closer for Small Group Health Plans

02/25/2004 - Defined Contribution Plans May Charge Former Employees' Accounts For Administrative Expenses

02/05/2004 - New Privacy Requirements Apply to Employers

12/01/2003 - Mutual Fund Trading Abuses and ERISA's Fiduciary Responsibilities

10/30/2003 - Public Companies, Insider Trading Restrictions and Individual Account Plans

07/17/2003 - EEOC Issues – Good News for Retiree Medical Plans

07/01/2003 - New COBRA Notice Guidance

06/18/2003 - Possible Claims Disruption as HIPAA Compliance Date for Standard Transactions Approaches

06/03/2003 - HIPAA Privacy – It’s Here (Closer Than You Think)

04/23/2003 - Failure to Provide Summary Plan Description Leads to Damages Award

Split-Dollar Life Insurance Arrangements

02/03/2003 - Pension Blackout Rules for Individual Account Retirement Plans

01/13/2003 - Consumer Driven Health Plans

11/27/2002 - EGTRRA Amendments May be Required by December 31, 2002

10/22/2002 - 17 - Pension Blackout Rules

09/23/2002 - Compliance Date for Electronic Data Interchange Standards Approaches - Are You Prepared?

04/09/2002 - IRS Suspends 5500 Filing Requirements

02/01/2002 - Serving Two Masters - ERISA Fiduciary Duties Revisted After Enron

01/01/2002 - To Wrap or Not to Wrap In Light of Privacy

01/01/2002 - HIPAA Update

11/15/2001 - IRS Proposes to Tax Incentive Stock Options and Employee Stock Plans

09/01/2001 - IRS Provides Guidance Regarding COBRA Liability in Mergers and Acquisitions

09/01/2001 - Military Leave and the Uniformed Services Employment/Reemployment Rights Act of 1994

08/01/2001 - 457 Plans and the Economic Growth and Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2001

08/01/2001 - Increased Portability of Rollovers

07/31/2001 - The Economic Growth and Tax Reconciliation Act of 2001

07/01/2001 - The Economic Growth and Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2001 Health and Welfare Plans

06/01/2001 - Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals Raises Potential Problems for Certain Executive Compensation Plans

Strategies for Retaining Key Employees and Terminating Non-Performers In Key Positions
Southern Methodist University Law Review Association’s 8th Annual Corporate Counsel Symposium

08/01/2000 - Tax-Sheltered Annuities and the Economic Growth and Tax Relief Reconciliation Act