This document contains a regulation under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, as amended, (ERISA or the Act) setting forth specific criteria that, if met and if certain other factors set forth in the regulation are not present, constitute a finding by the Secretary of Labor (the Secretary) that a plan is established or maintained under or pursuant to one or more collective bargaining agreements for purposes of section 3(40) of ERISA. Employee welfare benefit plans, such as health care plans, that meet the requirements of the regulation are excluded from the definition of ``multiple employer welfare arrangements'' under section 3(40) of ERISA and consequently are not subject to state regulation of multiple employer welfare arrangements as provided for by the Act. Regulations published elsewhere in this issue of the Federal Register set forth a procedure for obtaining a determination by the Secretary as to whether a particular employee welfare benefit plan is established or maintained under or pursuant to one or more agreements that are collective bargaining agreements for purposes of section 3(40) of ERISA. The procedure is available only in situations where the jurisdiction or law of a state has been asserted against an entity that contends it meets the exception for plans established or maintained under or pursuant to one or more collective bargaining agreements. This regulation is intended to assist labor organizations, plan sponsors and state insurance departments in determining whether a plan is a ``multiple employer welfare arrangement'' within the meaning of section 3(40) of ERISA.
Agency Contact: Elizabeth A. Goodman, Office of Regulations and Interpretations, Employee Benefits Security Administration, U.S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution Avenue, NW., Room N-5669, Washington, DC 20210, (202) 693-8510. This is not a toll- free number.
This rule is final. Its effective date is June 9, 2003.