To amend title I of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 to provide emergency protection for retiree health benefits.
Emergency Retiree Health Benefits Protection Act of 2009 - Amends the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) to add a program for emergency retiree health benefit protections.
Prohibits group health plans from reducing retiree health benefits after the retirement of a plan beneficiary. Requires such plans to adopt provisions barring post-retirement reductions in retiree health benefits.
Requires group health plan sponsors to grant retired plan participants the option of benefit restoration. Authorizes the Secretary of Labor to waive or vary requirements for benefit restoration if compliance with such requirements would: (1) be adverse to the interests of plan participants in the aggregate; (2) not be administratively feasible; and (3) cause substantial business hardship to plan sponsors.
Establishes the Emergency Retiree Health Loan Guarantee Program. Authorizes the Program to guarantee loans provided by private financial institutions toassist plan sponsors in meeting benefit restoration obligations under this Act. Terminates loan guarantee authority after 2015.
Authorizes the Secretary to assess civil penalties for violations of this Act.
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