Back to Professionals

Donna M. Niles

Employee Benefits Consultant

Donna focuses in the areas of pension, health and welfare, and employee benefits law. She is an Employee Benefits Consultant who has extensive experience in all aspects of employee benefits and ERISA, including plan design and implementation, plan administration, compliance, employee benefits issues arising out of mergers and acquisitions, and group health plan issues including COBRA and HIPAA. She also has experience in matters involving the Internal Revenue Service and Department of Labor including audits, determination letter filings, correction programs, and annual reporting compliance.


Work Experience

  • Hinckley Allen
    • Employee Benefits Consultant (2013-Present)
    • Paralegal (1998-2013)
  • Ethicon Endo-Surgery, A Division of Johnson & Johnson
    • Legal Assistant (1994-1998)
  • Cherry Webb & Touraine
    • Legal Assistant (1984-1994)

Charitable & Civic Involvement

  • Hasbro Children's Hospital, Volunteer (Dear Reader Program)
  • Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, Volunteer Coordinator

Professional Affiliations

  • National Federation of Paralegal Associations
  • New England Employee Benefits Council
  • Rhode Island Paralegal Association

News & Insight


Did You Know Small Employers Now Have a Useful Tool to Help Offset the Cost of Health Insurance?

March 9, 2017

The Affordable Care Act (“ACA”) made it unlawful for employers to offer a pre-tax stipend to be used for health insurance costs.  With the passage of the 21st Century Cures Act, and adoption of the “Qualified Small Employer Health Reimbursement Arra…


Did You Know? The Latest in ERISA & Employee Benefits

January 27, 2017

President Trump signs executive order aimed at minimizing burdens of the Affordable Care Act (ACA).President Trump’s executive order calls for federal agencies to “exercise all authority and discretion available to them to waive, defer, grant exemption…


2016 Year End Compliance Update - Are You Ready?

December 5, 2016

While there are no major legislative changes required for 2016, there are some important compliance deadlines that are rapidly approaching. Plan sponsors can use the chart below to stay on track and maintain compliance.We also note, for your reference, ann…


EEOC Issues Final Rule on Wellness Programs under the Americans with Disabilities Act

July 19, 2016

Many employers offer a reduction in health insurance premiums to employees who participate in wellness programs that are reasonably designed to promote health and prevent disease. For example, an employer may offer up to a 30% discount of the total cost fo…


Release of Final Summary of Benefits and Coverage Template and Uniform Glossary

July 19, 2016

Effective April 1, 2017, health plans and issuers of individual health insurance must comply with the final Summary of Benefits and Coverage (SBC) Template and Uniform Glossary. Existing SBC templates will need to be modified to reflect the final template.


Determination Letter Changes

July 19, 2016

Amid concern from the IRS’s Advisory Committee on Tax Exempt and Government Entities that the curtailment of the determination letter program is a “mistake” and “shortsighted,” recent guidance issued by the IRS has made clear that starting in 201…


IRS Issues Proposed Regulations on Applying Section 409A to Nonqualified Plans

July 19, 2016

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued proposed regulations that clarify or modify specific provisions of the final regulations under Internal Revenue Code ("Code") Section 409A. Although the proposed regulations do not become effective until finalized,…


The Department of Labor’s Finalized Fiduciary Rule

June 15, 2016

The U. S. Department of Labor (DOL) issued its final fiduciary rule on April 6. Under this rule, the definition of "fiduciary" is expanded and ERISA’s fiduciary standards and remedies become applicable to many of the investment and asset management recom…


Is Your Summary Plan Description Complaint with the Affordable Care Act?

June 15, 2016

An employer’s number of full-time employees is critical in determining whether the employer is an applicable large employer subject to the requirements of the Affordable Care Act (“ACA”) and for determining the Employer’s Shared Responsibility paym…


New Version of the Summary of Benefits and Coverage Finalized

June 15, 2016

The Summary of Benefits and Coverage (SBC) is intended to provide a uniform format for describing health plan benefits, thereby allowing health insurance shoppers to make meaningful comparisons among available health plans, and to assist enrollees to bette…


2017 Health Savings Account Limits Released

June 15, 2016

The Internal Revenue Service has issued the 2017 guidelines for contributions and out-of-pocket expenses for Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) that are tied to high-deductible health plans. Out-of-pocket maximums are unchanged at $6,550 for individuals and $…


Investment Advice Fiduciaries Eagerly Await Definitive Guidance Concerning the DOL’s Proposed Fiduciary Rule

February 17, 2016

The Department of Labor’s (DOL's) proposed fiduciary rule aimed at preventing conflicts of interest in the provision of retirement investment advice broadens the category of individuals and entities viewed as investment advice fiduciaries to ERISA (Em…


2014 Year-End Compliance - Qualified Retirement Plans & 2015 Compliance - The Affordable Care Act

December 2, 2014

By year-end 2014, sponsors of calendar-year retirement plans must adopt required and discretionary amendments and perform a range of administrative procedures to ensure compliance with current statutory and regulatory requirements. In addition, the Afforda…

Show More Publications


Past Event

Congratulations! You're a Plan Fiduciary! Now What?

November 3, 2016

Did you know that a plan fiduciary can be held personally liable for his/her action (or inaction), as well the actions (or inactions) of their co-fiduciaries? Join us for breakfast and a roundtable discussion intended to provide a broad overview of the rol…