Benefit Plan Sponsors Internal Revenue Service

News & Analysis as of

IRS Makes Significant Changes to Qualified Plan Determination Letter Program

The IRS has announced significant changes to its qualified plan determination letter program. These changes, which become effective January 1, 2017, impact individually-designed plans. Favorable determination letters...more

Major Changes in IRS Qualified Retirement Plan Determination Letter Procedure Announced

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has announced that, effective January 1, 2017, the existing procedure for issuance of favorable IRS determination letters for qualified pension, profit-sharing and 401(k) plans will be...more

The IRS Tosses Plan Sponsors a Curveball: New Guidance Throws Out One Method of Pension Plan De-Risking

In recent guidance, the IRS surprised plan sponsors with its plan to prevent them from using one means of “de-risking” their defined benefit pension plans to reduce their pension plan liabilities. In Notice 2015-49, the IRS...more

Employee Benefits After The Supreme Court’s Same-Sex Marriage Decision

The Supreme Court’s recent decision in Obergefell v. Hodges establishes a national right to same-sex marriage and requires states to recognize same-sex marriages performed in other states. Generally speaking, this...more

Employee Benefits Developments - June 2015

Supreme Court: Plan Fiduciaries Have a Continuing Duty to Monitor Plan Investments. In 2007, participants and beneficiaries under a 401(k) plan sued the plan fiduciaries and the plan sponsor to recover damages for alleged...more

Reminder: Non-Grandfathered Plans Must Implement Embedded Out-of-Pocket Maximums

As employers and plans prepare for 2016 open enrollment, they must be sure to address in their benefit design and with their third party vendors the new embedded out-of-pocket maximum limitations on individuals that were...more

July and August 2015 Filing and Notice Deadlines for Qualified Retirement and Health and Welfare Plans

Employers and plan sponsors must comply with numerous filing and notice deadlines for their retirement and health and welfare plans. Failure to comply with these deadlines can result in costly penalties. To avoid such...more

IRS Changes Rules on Lump Sum Window Programs

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has surprisingly issued a notice of its intention to amend the required minimum distribution (RMD) regulations under the Internal Revenue Code (Code) to limit the use of lump sum payments to...more

Same-Sex Marriage Ruling - What Does It Mean for Employee Benefit Plans?

In a 5-4 decision announced last Friday, the U.S. Supreme Court held in Obergefell v. Hodges that all states are required to recognize same-sex marriages. This ruling follows the Supreme Court’s 2013 decision in U.S. v....more

IRS Updates Retirement Plan Correction Procedure (Part 2)

The IRS has provided significant administrative and monetary relief for plans correcting errors involving employee contributions. The changes to the IRS’s Employee Plans Compliance Resolutions System (EPCRS) are set forth in...more

IRS Updates Retirement Plan Correction Procedure (Part 1)

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has revised its correction procedures to simplify correction of overpayments in defined benefit plans, make it cheaper to correct plan loan and minimum distribution errors, and provide more...more

IRS, PBGC Issue Guidance on Multiemployer Plan Benefit Suspensions and Plan Partitions

Yesterday the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) issued temporary, proposed and interim final regulations and a revenue procedure (collectively, the Guidance) under the...more

IRS Provides Helpful Updates to Retirement Plan Correction Program

The IRS has issued Revenue Procedures 2015-27 and 2015-28 (“Rev. Proc. 2015-27” and “Rev. Proc. 2015-28”), which modify the IRS’ retirement plan correction programs known as the Employee Plans Compliance Resolution System...more

DOL Report on Quality of Independent Plan Audits Shows that Plan Sponsors Must Continually Monitor Plan Compliance

The Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) of the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) recently released “Assessing the Quality of Employee Benefit Plan Audits,” a comprehensive report reviewing the quality of audit work...more

Electronic Self-Certification for Hardship Distributions is Not Sufficient

In its April 1, 2015 Employee Plans News, the IRS stated that defined contribution plan sponsors must maintain hardship distribution records and that plan sponsors cannot rely on electronic participant self-certification for...more

IRS Continues to Expand, Encourage and Simplify Correction Program in 2015 Updates to EPCRS

In spite of a plan sponsor's best efforts, errors and failures in administering a retirement plan occasionally come to light. We hear about these errors and failures usually following a change in administration, service...more

Compensation and Benefits Insights – April 2015 #2

The IRS recently made helpful revisions to the Employee Plans Compliance Resolution System ("EPCRS). EPCRS is an IRS program that permits plan sponsors to correct certain retirement plan errors and avoid substantial...more

Changes to the IRS Determination Letter Program

The IRS has informally stated that it is intending to make some significant changes to the Determination Letter program, and is even considering eliminating the program for individually designed retirement plans (other than...more

Correcting Problems With Your Retirement Plan [Video]

Presented by Caryn McNeill, Craig Wheaton and Jamie Hinkle The rules that apply to qualified retirement plans are complex. Not surprisingly, plan sponsors determine with some regularity that their plans have a compliance...more

Effect of a Check Notation: Void After 90 Days

On April 2, 2015, the IRS issued Rev. Proc. 2015-28, which provides new safe harbor correction methods for errors relating to automatic contribution features, including automatic enrollment and automatic escalation of...more

The Worthlessness Of The 401(k) Fiduciary Warranty

I am a firm believer in the idea that what you see is what you should get. If you’re promised the moon, anything short of that is wrong. Some of the biggest disappointments in my life is when I was sold a bill of goods that...more

DOL Reproposes Expanded ERISA Fiduciary Definition and Revised Complex of Exemptions

On April 14, 2015, after 43 months in development, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) released its reproposal to expand the “investment advice fiduciary” definition under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974,...more

IRS Extends Temporary Coverage/Nondiscrimination Testing Relief for Closed Defined Benefit Plans

Under guidance issued in Notice 2015-28, the IRS extended relief from certain coverage/nondiscrimination testing requirements for defined benefit plans that have been closed to new participants but provide ongoing accruals...more

EPCRS Updates: New Guidance Eases Administration of Plan Corrections

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has released two Revenue Procedures providing guidance under the Employee Plans Compliance Resolution System (EPCRS) that will facilitate the correction of certain retirement plan defects....more

IRS Modifies its Voluntary Retirement Plan Correction Procedures (EPCRS)

Under the IRS’s Employee Plans Compliance Resolution System (EPCRS), retirement plan sponsors may voluntarily request that the IRS approve certain corrections to a variety of plan administration errors before those errors are...more

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