Today, Donald Kieffer and Michelle Owen of the Employee Plans branch of the Internal Revenue Service (the "IRS") conducted a Phone Forum focused on the latest issues arising out of the ESOP determination letter process. This article is a summary of some of the items discussed.
Mr. Keiffer said the processing delay is largely due to (1) a shortage of IRS staff qualified to review ESOPs, which are more complicated than other qualified retirement plans, (2) new legislation that added complexity to ESOP documents (such as IRC Section 409(p)), and delay due to seeking necessary technical guidance from the IRS national office.
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