A federal law passed in 1974, the Employee Retirement Income Security Act, or ERISA, works to protect the security of pension plans created for employees by private industry employers. Generally speaking, the law does not cover government-run plans, nor does it cover plans established for the staffs of religious institutions. While companies are not required to establish pension plans, those that do must follow the rules of management set out in ERISA.
The history and significance of erisa by steven m ziegler
The History andSignificance of ERISA by Steven M. Ziegler
ERISA A federal law passed in 1974, theEmployee Retirement Income Security Act,or ERISA, works to protect the security ofpension plans created for employees byprivate industry employers. Generallyspeaking, the law does not covergovernment-run plans, nor does it coverplans established for the staffs of religiousinstitutions. While companies are notrequired to establish pension plans, thosethat do must follow the rules ofmanagement set out in ERISA.
ERISA ERISA does not set a base standard for employeebenefit pay. It does, however, mandate thatemployers give their pension plan enrolleescertain information that includes details of theplan’s funding and its features. In addition, thelaw establishes basic standards for mattersaffecting vesting, plan participation, andaccumulation of benefits. It requires that allfiduciary personnel (defined as those who holddiscretionary positions over plan assets) be heldaccountable to plan participants, and it supportsthe right of participants to file suit. Finally, ERISAguarantees certain benefits if a pension is“orphaned,” or abandoned by the fundingcompany, for example, in the case of bankruptcy.
About the authorThe Law Offices of Steven M. Ziegler P.A.served clients throughout South Floridaand beyond from 1984 to 2011, when Mr.Ziegler accepted a position as Senior VicePresident and General Counsel withAvMed, Inc. He has three decades ofexperience as counsel to managed carecompanies and has handled cases thatincorporate multiple aspects of ERISA andother federal laws and regulations.