PBGC final regs expand its missing participant program to DC, multiemployer DB, and other DB plans

The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) has issued final regulations that expand its existing missing participants program to cover terminated 401(k) and most other defined contribution (DC) plans, multiemployer defined benefit (DB) plans, and certain DB plans that are not currently covered by the program. The PBGC has revised the existing program to establish programs […]

SSA issues revised maximum taxable wage base for 2018

The Social Security Administration (SSA) issued a revision of the maximum taxable wage base for 2018 based on updated wage data reported to the Agency. The new wage base amount is $128,400, down $300 from the original wage base amount of $128,700 announced in October 2017. The lower taxable maximum amount is due to corrected […]

IRS issues updated mortality improvement rates and static mortality tables for 2019

The IRS has provided the updated mortality improvement rates and static mortality tables to be used under Code Sec. 430(h)(3)(A). These rates are used to calculate the funding target and other items for valuation dates occurring during calendar year 2019. Also included are modified “unisex” mortality tables for use in determining minimum present value under […]

IRS issues 2017 required amendments list for individually designed plans

The IRS has released the 2017 Required Amendments List for individually designed qualified retirement plans. The list identifies certain changes in qualification requirements that became effective in 2017 that may require a retirement plan to be amended in order to remain qualified. In Rev. Proc. 2016-37, the IRS modified its procedures for the determination letter […]

Fiduciary rule PTEs’ implementation again delayed

The Department of Labor (DOL) is extending, from January 1, 2018 to July 1, 2019, the special transition period for the fiduciary conflict of interest rule’s Best Interest Contract Exemption (BICE) and the Principal Transactions Exemption, and the applicability of certain amendments to Prohibited Transaction Exemption 84-24 (PTEs). The extension amendments to these exemptions, which […]

Tax bill signed into law, retirement plan provisions included

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (P.L. 115-97) was signed into law by President Trump on December 22, 2017. The Senate approved the bill, 51 to 48, a little after midnight on December 20, 2017. The House re-voted the same day, passing the bill, 224 to 201. The bill includes retirement plan-related provisions concerning Roth […]

IRS modifies accounting change procedures for qualified foreign plan election.

The IRS has modified its procedures for obtaining consent to change an accounting method related to a qualified foreign plan election under Code Sec. 404A. The IRS specifies that the Code Sec. 481 adjustment period with respect to an election under Code Sec. 404A is 15 taxable years for a positive Code Sec. 481(a) adjustment […]

GAO says better future retirement security requires comprehensive re-evaluation

A recently-released report from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) contains a warning that the U.S. retirement system is facing major challenges. Part of the reason for this, according to the report, is that traditional pensions have become much less common, and individuals are increasingly responsible for planning and managing their own retirement savings accounts, such […]

DOL provides compliance guidance for employee benefit plans adversely affected by Hurricane Maria and California wildfires

The Department of Labor (DOL) has issued guidance for parties connected to ERISA-covered employee benefit plans that have been adversely affected by Hurricane Maria and the October 2017 California wildfires. The DOL states that it understands that plan fiduciaries, employers, labor organizations, service providers, participants, and beneficiaries may have plan compliance-related problems over the next […]

2017 Form 5500 annual return/report series issued

The Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA), the IRS, and the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) have issued advance informational copies of the 2017 Form 5500 annual return/report, related instructions and schedules, and 2017 Form 5500-SF and instructions. The advance copies cannot be used to file a 2017 form. Plans should file Form 5500 or Form […]