DOL adjusts ERISA civil monetary penalties for 2018 in final regs

The Department of Labor (DOL) has issued final regulations to adjust the amounts of ERISA civil monetary penalties assessed or enforced under its regulations for inflation by the Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) for 2018. The adjustments are pursuant to the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act of 1990, as amended by the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act Improvements Act of 2015.
The 2015 Act requires the DOL to annually adjust its civil money penalty levels for inflation no later than January 15 of each year. The adjustments must be based on changes in the Consumer Price Index for all Urban Consumers. Accordingly, these final regulations set forth the Department’s 2018 annual adjustments for inflation to its civil monetary penalties (including ERISA civil monetary penalties), effective January 2, 2018. The increased penalty levels apply to any penalties assessed after January 2, 2018 for violations occurring after November 2, 2015.
For 2018, the adjustments for ERISA civil monetary penalties are in the final regulations’ Appendix, which will not appear in the Code of Federal Regulations.
All of the penalty amounts currently in ERISA Reg. Sec. 2575.2 have increased. For example, the failure or refusal to file Form 5500s as required by ERISA Sec. 104 and the failure of a multiemployer plan to certify endangered or critical status under ERISA Sec. 305(b)(3)(C) that is treated as a failure to file an annual report will increase from up to $2,097 per day to up to $2,140 per day.

Source: 83 FR 7.
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