Regulatory Compliance covers compliance with ethical codes of conduct as well as those promulgated by FINRA and the SEC.
ASPPA has suggested ways in which the Department of Labor could improve the proposed amendment to the Section 408(b)(2) fee disclosure regulations.
Rep. George Miller (D-Calif.) has asked Labor Secretary Tom Perez to look at potential conflicts of interest among pension consultants that recommend their own investments to clients, The Wall Street Journal reports.
More than 90 percent of the plan sponsors that filed their final Form 5500 filings the IRS Employee Plans Compliance Unit (EPCU) examined in its “Final Return With Assets Project” had at least one error, the IRS reports. Final Forms 5500 are required even if a plan has been exempt from filing a Form 5500-EZ (the annual return of a one-participant retirement plan) in previous years.
On May 15, the IRS issued Notice 2014-37 containing additional post-Windsor guidance for 401(k) or (m) safe harbor plans in response to an informal request by the ASPPA Government Affairs Committee.
The IRS will soon launch a new pilot program that will give relief to certain plan sponsors and administrators from penalties for filing the Form 5500 or Form 5500-EZ late. Only those who are not entitled to automatic relief under Title I of ERISA will be eligible under the pilot program.
Concerns about the impact and usefulness of the 408(b)(2) summary guide rule the DOL proposed in March are building and coalescing. Groups representing large plan sponsors and advisors have expressed concern about the proposal. And earlier this year, a coalition of industry groups that includes SPARK, which represents record keepers and DCIOs, was equally apprehensive about the new rules.
Speaking at a Washington legislative update meeting on May 5, Assistant Labor Secretary for the Employee Benefits Security Administration Phyllis Borzi said that while there is no set date for issuing the rule that will redefine fiduciary, she will not wait forever. Most insiders predict that the rule will not be released before the congressional elections in November.
The Office of Management and Budget has approved revisions to the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation’s standard termination, distress termination and missing participants forms and instructions. The new forms and instructions can be found on the Plan Terminations page of PBGC’s website.
The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation has revised two schedules to be used with 2014 Form 5500 filings. The PBGC modified the Schedule MB (multiemployer defined benefit plan actuarial information) and the Schedule SB (single-employer defined benefit plan actuarial information) and related instructions. The PBGC seeks the Office of Management and Budget’s approval of the modifications before it issues the revised schedules for use with 2014 filings.
Pension plans have a lot of adjustments to make in order to comply with the PBGC premium payment rules, which the PBGC amended for plan years beginning in 2014 and beyond. And even if a plan does not owe the PBGC a premium, it still must make a premium filing.
Defined contribution plans that were rewritten between May 1, 2008 and April 30, 2010 and that the IRS pre-approved need to be restated with the IRS. The six-year restatement period begins May 1, 2014 and ends April 30, 2016.
In two recent pronouncements, the IRS issued plan document guidance for pre-approved defined contribution plans being restated for the Pension Protection Act of 2006 (Announcement 2014-16), as well as 403(b) arrangements (Revenue Procedure 2014-28). According to the latest ASPPA asap, written by Richard A. Hochman, the guidance is a mixed bag.
Qualified retirement plans offer employees significant tax savings and have become a mainstay of most group benefits. But to maintain their qualified status, they must comply with a set of comprehensive rules and regulations. Failure to comply can result in the immediate taxation of all participants and the loss of the business expense for company contributions, as well as personal and legal repercussions for fiduciaries.
A majority of small businesses said in a recent study that the fee disclosure statements they receive from plan providers and vendors are more understandable than those they received in 2012.
New guidance from the IRS may make the plan-to-plan rollover process a little smoother. Revenue Ruling 2014-9, issued on April 3, is intended to make it easier for plan participants to consolidate their retirement savings accounts by making it easier for them to move assets from one employer plan to another.
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