Certificate in Employee Relations Law℠ Seminar

Scottsdale, Arizona March 2 - 6, 2020
Atlanta, Georgia April 20 - 24, 2020
Austin, Texas June 15 - 19, 2020
Orlando, Florida July 13 - 17, 2020
Newport Beach, CA Aug. 17 - 21, 2020
Las Vegas, Nevada October 5 - 9, 2020
Chicago, Illinois October 26 - 30, 2020
Washington, D.C. November 16 - 20, 2020

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The Certificate in Employee Relations Law℠ Seminar provides the most comprehensive, practical, up-to-date employment law training available. This is a 4½ day seminar geared to the real-world needs of human resource professionals, attorneys, and managers. The seminar provides "best practices" insights and information on the full range of employee relations law issues. The seminar is presented in three blocks. Registrants may select all three or any individual block (see registration page).

Certificate in Employee Relations Law℠ has been presented hundreds of times to tens of thousands of professionals since 1979, undergoing continuous improvements, updating and refinement.

The Certificate in Employee Relations Law℠ Seminar is designed to provide participants with a broad base of practical knowledge in all facets of employment law.



Overview of the Statutes and Regulatory Agencies Governing Retirement Plans

  • The Alphabet of Laws (ERISA, ADA, COBRA, FMLA, GATT, USERRA, HIPAA and EGTRRA) and agencies (IRS, DOL, EBSA, PBGC, EEOC, SEC and HCFA)
  • ERISA Title I and Title II and the division of authority between the IRS, the Department of Labor and the PBGC
  • Overview of plan types and qualification requirements

Fiduciary Rules and Investing Plan Assets

  • Overview of prohibited transactions, exemptions, penalties and corrections
  • Participant investment direction-Is 404(c) worth all the trouble?
  • Participant investment direc- tion in an up and down market
  • When investments go bad, who is liable?
  • Plan fiduciaries, cofiduciary liability and the liability of service providers
  • Paying expenses from plan assets
  • Why is the DOL so interested in proxy voting?
  • The lessons being learned from Enron
  • Investment of education versus advice

Nondiscrimination Testing for Retirement Plans

  • Overview of nondiscrimination testing of participation, benefits, and contributions
  • Controlled groups rules
  • Highly compensated employee definition
  • Coverage rules (Code Section 410(B)), including QSLOBs
  • Nondiscriminatory Contributions (Code Section 401(A)(4))
  • Safe harbors and general rules for contributions
  • Testing benefits, rights, and features
  • Cross testing and age weighted profit sharing plans
  • 401(k) and 401(m) testing and safe harbor plans
  • Dealing with failed 401(k) and 401(m) testing

Plan Administration

  • Day-to-Day Challenges of Plan Administration
  • Participant loans
  • QDROs
  • Salary deferrals and catch-up contributions
  • Paperless administration
  • Sarbanes-Oxley and blackout periods
  • ERISA Section 204(h) notices
  • Suspension of benefits provisions

Plan Distributions

  • When can participants take money out of the plan?
  • Withholding and rollovers
  • Consent rules
  • Joint and survivor rules
  • Hardship distributions
  • Code Section 411(d)(6) Anti- cutback rules and elimination of distribution methods
  • Minimum required distribu- tions at age 70½
  • Retroactive annuity starting dates

Plan Audits and IRS and DOL Voluntary Compliance Programs

  • Plan Qualification: What is it?
  • What happens if a plan is disqualified?
  • IRS audit targets
  • Correcting errors under IRS compliance programs
  • Correcting errors discovered by IRS in an audit
  • Late forms filing and how to resolve
  • Voluntary Fiduciary Correction Program
  • Compliance audits/compliance controls

Early Retirement Incentive Programs

  • Designing the program to achieve goals
  • Designing the program to comply with ADEA waiver rules
  • Designing to comply with 401(A)(4) rules for retirement early windows
  • What the courts are telling us about early retirement windows and ADEA waivers

Government and Nonprofit Employers – Qualified and Nonqualified Plans

  • Who is the employer? How controlled group rules apply to government and nonprofit employees
  • Qualification standards for government plans
  • Code Section 403(B) plans contribution limits and IRS audit and voluntary correction programs
  • Eligible and Ineligible Code Section 457 plans


ERISA Compliance

  • Learn which plans ERISA covers
  • How to deal with state-law requirements
  • Plan documentation and reporting obligations to partic- ipants and the government
  • Administering benefit claims
  • Making your administrative decisions bullet-proof
  • Learn about new ERISA developments and how they impact your plan
  • Managing your plans to mitigate the risk of fiduciary liability under ERISA
  • Understanding and satisfying fiduciary obligations
  • Identifying and investing plan assets
  • Protecting your plan’s right to reimbursement
  • Avoiding the anti-cutback rule

ERISA Litigation Advantages

ERISA Litigation Hot Topics


ERISA Compliance for Health & Welfare (H&W) Plans: A Hands-On Discussion for Employers and Plan Administrators

  • Which welfare plans are subject to ERISA
  • Reporting requirements (Form 5500)
  • Disclosure requirements (SPD, SMM, etc.)
  • Electronic SPDs
  • Plan funding rules
  • Trust requirements
  • What funds are plan assets
  • Cafeteria plan trust moratorium
  • Fiduciary Obligations
  • Prohibited transaction issues
  • DOL claim procedure require- ments
  • ERISA 510 claims
  • Impact of ERISA on claims litigation
  • Preemption and state law regulation

Health Care Reform: A Walk Through of Compliance Requirements Every Employer Needs to Know

  • Introduction to the Affordable Care Act (ACA) Compliance Mandates
  • Play or Pay and the Employer Obligation to Extend Health Coverage
  • Cadillac tax and How to Avoid It
  • ACA Reporting
  • New developments and issues under the Trump Administration

HIPAA Privacy Overview

  • Privacy issues for health plan sponsors
  • Business associate contract requirements

The H & W Plan Alphabet

  • Impact of employment nondiscrimination laws on H & W benefits
  • Age Discrimination (ADEA)
  • Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA)
  • Pregnancy Discrimination Act
  • Americans With Disabilities Act
  • Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA)
  • Military leave (USERRA)
  • QMCSOs
  • Health plan mandates
    • Mental Health Parity
    • Medicare Secondary
    • Cancer Rights Act

Cafeteria Plan Issues

  • Cafeteria plan basics
  • Which benefits can be pre-taxed
  • Who can participate
  • The irrevocable election rule and change in status excep- tions
  • Health and Dependent Care FSAs
    • Which expenses qualify
    • Claim substantiation rules

Introduction to Private Exchanges and Consumer Driven Health Care

  • Health Savings Accounts (HSAs)
  • Introduction to HRA rollover accounts
  • What’s a Private Exchange and Why Do I Need One

Discrimination Testing Basics

  • Which H & W plans must comply
  • Basic operating rules
  • What to do if you fail


  • COBRA basics
  • What the courts are telling us
  • Forms and procedures


Human Resource Certification Institute (HCRI)

This seminar has been approved for 29.75 (general) recertification credit hours toward PHR, SPHR, and GPHR recertification.

Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM)

The Institute for Applied Management & Law, Inc. is recognized by SHRM to offer Professional Development Credits (PDCs) for the SHRM-CPSM or SHRM-SCPSM. Earn 29.75 PDCs by attending this 4½ day seminar.

International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans

Earn 29.75 Continuing Education Credits towards CEBS recertification

Continuing Legal Education Units

IAML is designated as an approved provider of professional training for the states of California and Pennsylvania. This 41⁄2 day activity has been approved for Minimum Continuing Legal Education credits by the State Bars of California and Pennsylvania in the amount of 29.5 credit hours.

Other States: This seminar has been approved for CLE credits in many other states. Please call to see if your state has been approved for CLE this year. IAML requests 45 days prior notification that you wish such credit. An additional charge may be involved.