It’s been a busy time in Washington, D.C., with an array of regulatory releases since mid-March. Adding to the attention this space has already been drawing, the latest Talking Benefits podcast episode provides a run-down of what’s been happening so plan sponsors know what to follow and pay attention to.

The episode covers selected benefits and employment regulatory developments from the last several weeks. The team provided updates on the following topics.


– The long-awaited new conflict of interest or fiduciary rule has been issued from the Department of Labor (DOL)’s Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA).

– The EBSA issues a final amendment to qualified professional asset managers (QPAMs). The amendment addresses registration, asset, recordkeeping and eligibility requirements for QPAMs, and it is effective June 17, 2024.

– The IRS issuing FAQs in Fact Sheet 2024-19, relating to rules for distributions from retirement plans and IRAs as well as for retirement plan loans, for certain individuals impacted by federally declared major disasters. This is tied to a provision in the SECURE 2.0 Act of 2022.


– The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office for Civil Rights issued a final rule under Affordable Care Act (ACA) Section 1557. The rule protects against discrimination by codifying that Section 1557’s prohibition against discrimination based on sex includes LGBTQI+ and pregnant patients.

– The DOL and HHS released a final rule prohibiting the disclosure of protected health information (PHI) related to lawful reproductive health care in certain circumstances to bolster patient-provider confidentiality.

– HHS released the 2024 National Strategy for Suicide Prevention and an accompanying Federal Action Plan that’s geared to span ten years. The National Strategy seeks to prevent suicide risk in the first place, identify and support people with increased risk through treatment and crisis intervention, prevent reattempts, promote long-term recovery and support survivors.

– The DOL released a final rule and the rescission of the 2018 rule on association health plans. The 2018 rule had broadened the definition of employer under ERISA, which would have allowed small businesses and other groups of employers to join together and form an association for the sole purpose of offering association health plans.


– The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) issued a final rule and interpretive guidance to implement the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act. The final rule and interpretive guidance are effective June 18, 2024.

– The EEOC released final enforcement guidance on harassment in the workplace. The guidance was effective on the day it was issued.

– The DOL’s Wage and Hour Division released a final rule to update and revise the regulations issued under the Fair Labor Standards Act (or FLSA) implementing the exemptions from minimum wage and overtime pay requirements for executive, administrative, professional, outside sales and computer employees.

– The DOL rule revising guidance on how to analyze whether a worker is an employee or independent contractor under the FLSA.

– The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) issued a final rule banning noncompete agreements. The FTC indicated that noncompetes are an unfair method of competition, and therefore a violation of Section 5 of the FTC Act.

We hope this episode helps bring some clarity to the current flurry on Capitol Hill!

Don’t miss a single episode! 

Subscribe to Talking Benefits iTunes

Subscribe to Talking Benefits on iTunes, or wherever you get your podcasts for automatic updates as new episodes are released, or watch for new episodes on the International Foundation website.

Anne Patterson

Associate Director, PR and Communications Favorite Foundation Product: Foundation Community. It’s like LinkedIn but only for Foundation members. They can post questions, share best practices, etc—all with fellow members who also live and breathe employee benefits. Benefits-related Topics That Interest Her Most: Mental health, diversity, equity and inclusion, behavioral decision making, family-forming benefits, payroll audits. Personal Insight: When she’s not busy keeping up with her two little ones, Anne finds joy in home renovation and décor, haiku writing, watching Jeopardy, crafting charcuterie boards, and bicycling.

Recommended Posts

Best Practices for Multiemployer Retirement Plan Death Audits

Jenny Gartman, CEBS

Fiduciaries have many responsibilities that stem from the duties of care, loyalty and prudence, including ensuring the correct benefits are paid to the correct participants and beneficiaries of the plan. Benefits Magazine authors Lisa L. Kaiser, CEBS, and Carey R. Wooton, CEBS, explain […]