Senator Andrew Gounardes (D. 22nd) has sponsored a “same as” bill – S4864 to accompany A5818 – “AN ACT to amend the insurance law, in relation to providing protection to certain retirees from pension de-risking transactions; and to amend the civil practice law and rules, in relation to statutorily exempt payments” sponsored by Assemblyman Peter Abbate.   This bill has been referred to the Insurance Committee.  The introduction of the “same as” bill in the New York Senate is very important.  In New York State, both the Senate and Assembly must pass a bill before the Governor can sign the bill into law.

Pension de-risking through the purchase of a group annuity contract is a concern to retirees because retirees lose all of the uniform protections intended by Congress under ERISA and their rights become subject to non-uniform state laws. Enactment of legislation at the state level is needed to replace these protections.  NY’s proposed legislation will provide those protections to New York retirees impacted by pension de-risking transfers.  This legislation will provide basic financial disclosures, protections of annuity benefits from creditors, and reasonable restrictions on subsequent transfers.

Download text of New York Senate Bill 4864.

Download text of New York Assembly Bill A5818.

Pension de-risking protections have already been enacted in Connecticut and Virginia.  Read more about pension de-risking here and here.