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Compliance Q&A: Governmental Plans

Summary

Most employer-sponsored group health plans are subject to the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA), which includes fiduciary, reporting and other requirements. ERISA allows for two types of employers to be exempted: governmental employers and churches. The “governmental plan” exemption allows plans “established or maintained by the government of the United States, the government of any state or political subdivision thereof, or by any agency or instrumentality of the foregoing” to escape being subject to ERISA requirements, but what qualifies under the governmental plan exemption often requires a legal determination.

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