Firm News


August 19, 2013

Mitchell, Williams, Selig, Gates & Woodyard, P.L.L.C. will host a webinar to inform employers on the recent IRS postponement of the assessment of payments under the Affordable Care Act, as well as the issues raised by the U.S. Supreme Court's recent ruling on the federal Defense of Marriage Act for employers and sponsors of employee benefit plans. The webinar is scheduled for 11:30 a.m. on Aug. 23 and will guide employers in what they need to know in order to comply with the Affordable Care Act during the postponement, as well as employment issues after the changes to DOMA. When the Supreme Court struck down a key portion of DOMA and cleared the way for gay marriages to resume in California, it also left room for further legal challenges in states that still ban same-sex marriage. This change has widespread impact not only on benefits, but also on other employer issues such as the Family and Medical Leave Act. A portion of the Aug. 23 webinar will be dedicated to what Arkansas employers with all employees in a recognition state, as well as those with employees in both recognition and non-recognition states, should consider in relation to such topics as:

  • FMLA
  • Treatment for participants in pension plans
  • Treatment for employees married to a same-sex spouse in a recognition state
  • Transferring an employee married in a same-sex jurisdiction to a state that does not recognize same-sex marriages
  • Employers who treat employees married and living in same-sex states differently than those married in a same-sex state and living in a state that does not recognize same-sex marriages
  • Beneficiary designations
  • Plan amendments necessary to address these issues

The other half of the Aug. 23 webinar will focus on postponement of the shared-responsibility rules under the Affordable Care Act. Among the issues to be considered for 2014 and 2015 are:

  • What is postponed under ACA
  • The need to use the ACA definition of full-time and part-time employees on January 1, 2014
  • The effect of the postponement on fiscal plan years vs. calendar plan years
  • Avoiding ACA by reducing employee hours below 30

Tod Yeslow, a member of Mitchell Williams' Rogers office, will be one of two presenters of the webinar. An employee benefits lawyer with 28 years of experience, Yeslow regularly advises clients in all technical legal aspects of employee benefits including: health and welfare plans, pension and profit-sharing plans, 401(k) plans, stock bonus plans, equity-based plans, executive-compensation plans, supplemental-benefit plans, fringe-benefit plans, and perquisites. Brian Vandiver, team leader of the firm's labor and employment practice group, will present with Yeslow. Vandiver primarily represents employers in all areas of labor and employment law. His clients range from some of the largest employers in the state to the smallest and include both self-insured employers and insured employers with ELPI (employment practices liability insurance coverage). He routinely advises, trains and represents management in all areas of labor and employment law litigation and compliance. To register for the webinar, visit For more information, contact Holly Hiett at Mitchell Williams at (501) 688-8848 or