Defined Contribution Plans

News & Analysis as of

IRS Issues Guidance on Determination Letter Program

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has recently issued detailed guidance on the new determination letter program for tax-qualified retirement plans. In 2015, the IRS announced that, due to budgetary constraints, the program...more

Brexit: The implications for occupational pension schemes

The UK electorate voted to leave the European Union in a so-called Brexit referendum. The initial impact for occupational pension schemes has come from the resulting market volatility, and whilst there is no immediate impact...more

Did Your Company Fail to Adopt a New Preapproved Defined Contribution Plan by the April 30th Deadline? The IRS Has a Solution for...

Background - Sponsors of preapproved defined contribution retirement plans were generally required to sign new plan documents on or before April 30, 2016 that incorporated changes required by the Pension Protection Act...more

More DB DC Plan Design Flexibility in Maximizing Benefits for Highly Compensated Employees

Given the subject matter involved, this Alert is very technical and specialized. If your company offers both an active pension plan and a 401(k) or profit sharing plan and performs the general test to satisfy the...more

April 30 Deadline to Restate Pre-Approved Plans

Sponsors of pre-approved defined contribution retirement plans are generally required to sign new plan documents that incorporate changes required by the Pension Protection Act on or before April 30, 2016. Defined...more

Department Of Labor Audits Are Focusing On Plan Procedures For Locating Missing Vested Participants

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has increased its examinations of the procedures of defined benefit and defined contribution retirement plans for locating and paying out benefits to terminated vested participants whom the...more

Recent Lawsuit Demonstrates Continuing Need for Plan Fiduciaries to Document Decision-Making Process

Late last year, another lawsuit was brought on behalf of participants in a 401(k) plan alleging breaches of fiduciary duties resulting from allegedly high plan fees. This type of case is not novel; the law firm that brought...more

Advisors Advantage - April 2016

The Struggles Of Being A Retirement Plan Provider And How To Manage It. What you have to deal with. Being a retirement plan provider is like any other business in the sense that it has to be managed in a way...more

The Rosenbaum Law Firm Review - March 2016

Things About Plan Providers That Shouldn't Impress Plan Sponsors. Don't get bamboozled. There are certain things in life we really should be impressed by, but we always end up being impressed by the wrong...more

Pension Plan Sponsors Beware: The Department of Labor Is Investigating Plans That Fail to Locate and Pay Benefits to Terminated...

A Department of Labor (“DOL”) official recently disclosed a new DOL investigation initiative focusing on the adequacy of defined benefit plan procedures to locate and pay out benefits to terminated vested participants. The...more

Undermining the Goal of Expanding Coverage for Nonhighly Compensated Employees

One might be led to believe that the current administration is in favor of expanding retirement savings opportunities. After all, the DOL has somewhat apologetically subverted ERISA to allow the States to sponsor...more

The End of an Era—IRS Issues Additional Guidance on End of Determination Letter Application Program

In 2015, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced changes to its existing determination letter program, namely that the staggered remedial amendment cycle for individually designed retirement plans would end effective...more

IRS Proposes Nondiscrimination Testing Relief for Closed Pension Plans

In order for its participants to receive favorable tax treatment, a “qualified” retirement plan must satisfy various requirements, including ensuring that it benefits a nondiscriminatory cross-section of employees rather than...more

Last Call for Plan Restatements

My favorite professor at law school Bernie Corr said it best when he joked that the Bankruptcy Code changes to keep bankruptcy attorneys employed. I’m sure people think that the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) requires...more

President’s FY 2017 Budget Aims to Seal the Deal on Fiscal Legacy

On February 9, President Obama released the last budget request of his Administration. The FY 2017 budget incorporates many proposals from past years but also looks to cement the president’s legacy with a number of new fiscal...more

IRS Announces Additional Changes in Determination Letter Program

The Internal Revenue Service (the IRS) recently issued Notice 2016-03 (the Notice) addressing three topics and expanding on its earlier announcement of major changes in the determination letter program for individually...more

Ontario Government Releases Additional ORPP Design Details

On January 26, 2016, the Ontario government released additional design details about the Ontario Retirement Pension Plan (ORPP) as well as a technical bulletin?, which provide additional information about the ORPP that will...more

IRS Notice 2016-03 Modifies the IRS Determination Letter Program

The IRS recently issued Notice 2016-03 (the “Notice”), addressing several items with respect to changes made to the IRS’s determination letter program.  The Notice also extends the deadline for sponsors to adopt a...more

Variable Annuities Are Retirement Investment Product of Interest in SEC’s 2016 Examination Priorities

As we discussed yesterday, the Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC’s) Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations (OCIE) released its examination priorities for 2016 on January 11 (the “Examination Priorities”)....more

IRS Moving Forward with Changes to Determination Letter Program

As we reported last year, the IRS determination letter program for tax-qualified retirement plans is about to significantly change. Beginning in 2017, individually designed retirement plans will be eligible to obtain...more

2015 End of Year Plan Sponsor “To Do” List Part 2 – Qualified Retirement Plans

As 2015 comes to an end, we are pleased to present you with our traditional End of Year Plan Sponsor “To Do” Lists. This year, we are presenting our “To Do” Lists in three separate SW Benefits Updates. Part 1 of the series...more

Issues in Gray Divorces

The divorce rate in the United States has been dropping during the past 20 years. However, divorce among spouses over 50 years old has doubled since 1990! The surge has spawned the term “gray divorce” for these older...more

November and December 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

Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation: Do You Need to Send an Annual Notice to Plan Participants?

Plan sponsors of defined contribution qualified plans may need to issue one or more annual notices to participants before the end of each plan year. Failure to issue a required annual notice can have significant consequences....more

Nonqualfied deferred compensation plan update

In June 2015, the Internal Revenue Service released updated audit guidelines for nonqualified deferred compensation plans. Basically, audit guidelines are used by the IRS to communicate with the agents in the field who are...more

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