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IRS Issues Guidance on Uncashed Distribution Checks
Hanson Bridgett LLP, October 2019

Last month, the IRS issued new guidance on the tax treatment of uncashed distribution checks from qualified retirement plans. In Revenue Ruling 2019-19, the IRS ruled that a participant's failure to cash the required distribution check she received from a qualified plan did not permit her to exclude the distribution from her taxable income or alter her employer's obligation to withhold taxes from the distribution and report it as taxable income...

IRS Form 1099-K Payment Reporting Under California AB 5
Hanson Bridgett LLP, October 2019

On September 18, 2019, California Governor Gavin Newsom approved Assembly Bill 5 (AB 5) to limit the classification of workers as independent contractors in the state. The new law, effective January 1, 2020, will increase payroll tax responsibilities for California companies that must reclassify workers as employees...

Recent California Court of Appeal Decisions Highlight Importance of Process and Need for Signature of Authorized Individual to Secure Binding Arbitration Agreement
Hanson Bridgett LLP, September 2019

Two recent opinions of the California Court of Appeal address the enforcement of arbitration agreements in the senior care setting when executed by someone other than the resident. The Court of Appeal's decisions in Valentine v. Plum Healthcare Group, LLC (2019) 37 Cal.App.5th 1076 (Valentine) and Lopez v. Bartlett Care Center LLC (2019) ____ Cal.App...

Update on Epple: California's "New" Procedure for Providing Medical Interventions Requiring Informed Consent to SNF Residents Who Lack Both Capacity and a Legal Representative
Hanson Bridgett LLP, September 2019

California Health and Safety Code section 1418.8 outlines the requirements a skilled nursing facility (SNF) must follow when a physician prescribes a medical intervention that requires informed consent for an "unfriended" resident, meaning an individual who lacks capacity and does not have a person with legal authority to make health care decisions on their behalf. Section 1418...

Court Upholds Plan Administrator's Interpretation in Recent ERISA Case
Hanson Bridgett LLP, September 2019

On August 16, 2019, the Ninth Circuit ruled in O'Rourke v. Northern California Electrical Workers Pension Plan, et al. that the board of trustees for an ERISA-covered multiemployer pension plan did not abuse its discretion by broadly interpreting the plan's ambiguous trade-based suspension of benefits provision to preclude a participant’s claim for early retirement benefits...

Recent Increase in IRS Enforcement of ACA Reporting Penalties
Hanson Bridgett LLP, September 2019

Recently, the IRS has intensified enforcement of information reporting compliance under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Information reporting penalties apply in addition to any penalties assessed for failures to meet the employer shared responsibility provisions, known as the employer mandate...

Insurers Beware: California's Notice-Prejudice Rule Is a "Fundamental Public Policy"
Hanson Bridgett LLP, September 2019

For those insurers that seek to circumvent California’s notice-prejudice rule, the California Supreme Court has just made that more difficult. In Pitzer College v. Indian Harbor Insurance Company, 845 F.3d 993 (9th Cir. 2017), the Ninth Circuit certified questions to the California Supreme Court, including: “Is California's common law notice-prejudice rule a fundamental public policy for the purpose of choice-of-law analysis?” (Pitzer College, 845 F.3d at 994...

Coping with COPA – New San Francisco Law Requires Owners of Certain Apartment Buildings to Offer to Sell to Nonprofits
Hanson Bridgett LLP, September 2019

The information in this article is based on new regulations issued by the City of San Francisco, and supersedes the article published in early June of this year.   San Francisco has recently enacted the Community Opportunity to Purchase Act (COPA), a law that provides San Francisco nonprofits with the right to purchase apartment buildings of three or more units before they are put on the market...

CalSavers State-Sponsored Retirement Plan Has Officially Launched
Hanson Bridgett LLP, September 2019

As of July 1, 2019, registration officially opened for CalSavers, California's new retirement savings program, formerly known as Secure Choice. CalSavers is a mandatory state-sponsored program for private sector and nonprofit workers whose employers do not offer a retirement plan. Under CalSavers, eligible employers with five or more employees must register with the California State Treasurer’s office as a participating employer in CalSavers...

New Regulations for Binding Pre-Dispute Arbitration Agreements with Long-Term Care Residents
Hanson Bridgett LLP, August 2019

In 2016, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued regulations that prohibited long-term care facilities from entering into pre-dispute arbitration agreements with residents and their families. Shortly thereafter, those regulations were successfully challenged in federal court, and CMS has not attempted to enforce them. On July 18, 2019, CMS issued a final rule that will formally rescind the ban on pre-dispute arbitration agreements with long-term care residents...

CalPERS Announces New Fees for Section 218 Agreements
Hanson Bridgett LLP, August 2019

CalPERS Announces New Administrative Fees for Section 218 Agreements The California Public Employees' Retirement System (CalPERS), the California State Social Security Administrator (SSSA), announced in July that it will begin charging new administrative fees to public agencies for Section 218 Agreements to pay the cost of administering the SSSA program...

California Supreme Court Potentially Slows Down the Expansion of the Legal Cannabis Market
Hanson Bridgett LLP, August 2019

In Union of Medical Marijuana Patients v. City of San Diego, the California Supreme Court unanimously held that the City of San Diego failed to analyze the potential environmental impacts of its medical marijuana dispensary law. While the main issue in this case was the definition of a project under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), the ruling has important ramifications for the legal cannabis market as a whole...

New Timing Requirements for Certain California Eviction Actions Take Effect September 1
Hanson Bridgett LLP, August 2019

On September 1, 2019, AB2342 and its new timing requirements for issuing certain eviction notices and for answering eviction lawsuits go into effect in California. AB2343 amends California Code of Civil Procedure Sections 1161(2) and (3) regarding 3-day notices to pay or quit and 3-day notices based on neglect or failure to perform other conditions or covenants of the lease or agreement...

The IRS is Coming for Your Cryptocurrency
Hanson Bridgett LLP, August 2019

This summer, the IRS significantly increased its efforts to police the taxation of Bitcoin, Ethereum, and other similar cryptocurrencies. On July 26, 2019, the IRS announced that it had begun sending letters to taxpayers who potentially failed to pay cryptocurrency taxes associated with digital currency transactions or failed to properly report those transactions. By the end of August, the IRS anticipates that it will have sent over 10,000 letters to taxpayers...

Bureau of Cannabis Control Publishes New Distributor Fact Sheets
Hanson Bridgett LLP, August 2019

The Bureau of Cannabis Control recently published two new fact sheets on its website as a resource for industry stakeholders, licensees, and the general public. The facts sheet help everyone better understand the different responsibilities of the cannabis distributor (Type 11) and the cannabis distributor transport only (Type 13) licensee by providing a list of required procedures and guidelines for various distribution activities...

Employers May Offer Two New Types of Health Reimbursement Arrangements in 2020
Hanson Bridgett LLP, July 2019

Under final rules issued last month, employers can offer two new types of health reimbursement arrangements or HRAs: individual coverage HRAs ("ICHRAs") and excepted benefit HRAs ("EBHRAs"). HRAs are self-funded, account based plans that reimburse employees for qualified medical expenses on a tax-free basis. The final rules apply for plan years beginning on or after January 1, 2020. While the rules are complex, the new ICHRAs and EBHRAs offer new planning opportunities for employers...

California Appellate Court Reverses Trial Court and Confirms Insurer's Duty to Defend Additional-Insured General Contractor, Despite Seemingly Broad Exclusion
Hanson Bridgett LLP, July 2019

Last month, a California appellate court reversed the trial court and ruled that a subcontractor's insurer had a duty to defend an additional-insured general contractor in underlying construction-defect litigation. In McMillin Homes Construction, Inc. v. National Fire & Marine Insurance Company (2019) 35 Cal.App.5th 1042, a general contractor was an additional insured under a commercial general liability policy issued to its roofing subcontractor...

Governor Newsom Signs AB 97 to Extend Provisional Licenses and Add Enforcement and Organic Certification to California Cannabis Market
Hanson Bridgett LLP, July 2019

On July 1, Governor Newsom signed into law AB 97 with the intent to reduce the illicit cannabis market by bringing more people into the legal marketplace and to ensure that persons most harmed by cannabis criminalization be offered assistance to enter into the billion-dollar cannabis industry. Below is a summary of the most important aspects of AB 97...

Ninth Circuit Rules ERISA Pension Plan Must Pay Survivor Benefits to Registered Domestic Partner
Hanson Bridgett LLP, June 2019

In a short, unpublished opinion, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that an ERISA pension plan administrator should have treated a deceased participant's registered domestic partner as a surviving spouse and granted his claim for survivor benefits...

California Appellate Court Affirms Large Punitive Damages Award Against Insurer
Hanson Bridgett LLP, June 2019

Last month, a California appellate court rejected an insurer's arguments and affirmed a large punitive damages award against the insurer, providing a fresh roadmap for policyholders to obtain such relief when insurers engage in certain bad-faith practices. Mazik v. GEICO General Insurance Company (2019) 35 Cal.App.5th 455 involved a policyholder's claim for the $50,000 limits under his underinsured motorist policy...

New COPA Policy Now in Effect as of June 2, 2019
Hanson Bridgett LLP, June 2019

On April 23, 2019, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors unanimously approved the Community Opportunity to Purchase Act (COPA), a policy designed to stabilize communities by preventing displacement and preserving affordable housing. The Mayor signed the legislation on May 3, 2019 and it went into effect on June 2, 2019...

A Compendium of Qualified Opportunity Zone Proposed Regulations
Hanson Bridgett LLP, May 2019

 Article PDF   On April 17, 2019, the Treasury Department released a second round of proposed regulations (the "4/19 Regulations") providing additional guidance on the implementation of the Opportunity Zone (“OZ”) tax incentive included in the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. The 4/19 Regulations are taxpayer-friendly and expand upon (but in some cases modify) the guidance provided in the initial proposed regulations released on October 19, 2018 (the "10/18 Regulations")...

A Compendium of Qualified Opportunity Zone Proposed Regulations
Hanson Bridgett LLP, May 2019

 Article PDF   On April 17, 2019, the Treasury Department released a second round of proposed regulations (the "4/19 Regulations") providing additional guidance on the implementation of the Opportunity Zone (“OZ”) tax incentive included in the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. The 4/19 Regulations are taxpayer-friendly and expand upon (but in some cases modify) the guidance provided in the initial proposed regulations released on October 19, 2018 (the "10/18 Regulations")...

A Compendium of Qualified Opportunity Zone Proposed Regulations:
Hanson Bridgett LLP, May 2019

 Article PDF   On April 17, 2019, the Treasury Department released a second round of proposed regulations (the "4/19 Regulations") providing additional guidance on the implementation of the Opportunity Zone (“OZ”) tax incentive included in the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. The 4/19 Regulations are taxpayer-friendly and expand upon (but in some cases modify) the guidance provided in the initial proposed regulations released on October 19, 2018 (the "10/18 Regulations")...

Court Strikes Down Alameda Impact Fees in Boatworks, LLC v. City of Alameda
Hanson Bridgett LLP, May 2019

The Mitigation Fee Act, Government Code section 66000 et seq., authorizes local agencies to impose fees on development projects in order to cover the cost of public facilities needed to serve the developments. However, the local agencies' power to impose mitigation fees is not unlimited: the fees must be reasonably related to the increased burden on public facilities caused by the new development. (Gov. Code § 66000(b); 66001...

 

 

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