Alfred E. Gallade - Page 11

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               The first substantive issue for decision is whether                    
          petitioner must include in income the value of his fully vested             
          interest in GCI’s pension plan, which he waived in favor of GCI.            
          Petitioner asserts that the funds are not includable because of             
          his permissible “waiver” of benefits in favor of his wholly owned           
               Respondent argues that petitioner must recognize taxable               
          income from the Plan’s distribution because petitioner had an               
          unconditional right to receive the benefits, and any attempted              
          “waiver” is invalid under the Employee Retirement Income Security           
          Act of 1974 (ERISA), Pub. L. 93-406, 88 Stat. 829, 29 U.S.C. sec.           
          1001, and the Internal Revenue Code (I.R.C.).                               
               ERISA was enacted to establish “a comprehensive federal                
          scheme for the protection of pension plan participants and their            
          beneficiaries.”  American Tel. & Tel. Co. v. Merry, 592 F.2d 118,           
          120 (2d Cir. 1979).  ERISA was intended to assure that American             
          workers “may look forward with anticipation to a retirement with            
          financial security and dignity, and without fear that this period           
          of life will be lacking in the necessities to sustain them as               
          human beings within our society.”  S. Rept. 93-127, at 13 (1974),           
          1974-3 C.B. (Supp.) 1, 13.  To this end, ERISA requires that                
          plans provide that benefits may not be assigned or alienated.  H.           
          Rept. 93-807, at 68 (1974), 1974-3 C.B. (Supp.) 236, 303.  This             
          provision is included in both the I.R.C. and ERISA section                  
          206(d)(1), which state that a pension plan will not be qualified            

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