The principal regulators of U.S. employee benefits have recently published updates to their guidance plans for the coming months.

On October 31, 2016, the U.S. Department of the Treasury and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) released the First Quarter Update to the 2016-2017 Priority Guidance Plan, often informally referred to as the IRS Business Plan, which lists those issues that will be the subject of formal guidance from July 2016 through June 2017. The first quarter update to the IRS Business Plan includes 33 pending items addressing retirement benefits and 19 pending items addressing executive compensation, health care and other benefits. The items are listed in the chart below in the reverse order of when they first appeared on the agenda.

On November 17, 2016, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) updated its Semi-Annual Regulatory Agenda. This publication takes the form of a Federal Register notice to comply with certain administrative requirements. The DOL’s agenda and related materials include 12 pending projects related to employee benefits, which are listed in the chart below in order of the projected timetable for next steps. (In the ordinary course, the projected dates shown on the agenda may prove to be ambitious.)

Projects added to the agendas since they were last published are shown in bold. There are no new IRS initiatives, and one new DOL initiative.

Please click here to view table.