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View More Press Releases by PWBA [U.S. Department of Labor, Pension and Welfare Benefits Administration]

Press release:

Agencies Respond to Requests for Extension of Form 5500 Deadline

Issued by: PWBA [U.S. Department of Labor, Pension and Welfare Benefits Administration]

Date: Oct. 6, 2000

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Pension and Welfare Benefits Administration (PWBA), Internal Revenue Service (IRS), and Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) today announced guidance for employee benefit plans who are unable to file timely Form 5500 Annual Returns/Reports. The guidance is being furnished in response to requests to further extend the filing deadline.

After careful consideration of requests for a second extension of the Forms 5500 and 5500-EZ filing deadline, the agencies concluded that any further extension of the filing period would present significant processing issues. In March, the agencies granted an automatic extension to Oct.16, 2000 for those filers with reporting due dates on or before July 31, 2000. The agencies indicated at that time that they do not intend to impose late filing penalties for the 1999 Form 5500 or 5500-EZ in cases where, despite a good faith effort to meet deadlines, filings are delayed because of transition year difficulties.

With the approach of the October 16 filing deadline for many plans, Leslie B. Kramerich, Acting Assistant Secretary for PWBA, said that “the department recognizes that new forms, a new filing system and delays in form-related software have presented challenges for many 1999 Form 5500 filers. It is our goal to facilitate compliance for this transitional year, not penalize good faith efforts of filers to deal with these challenges.”

To this end, Kramerich announced that the agencies are encouraging filers who will be unable to meet their filing deadline to attach a statement to their filing explaining the reasons for the delay. “Where a statement establishes reasonable cause for the late filing, the agencies will not take any further action solely as a result of the late filing,” Kramerich said.

The extension of time to file the Form 5500 and 5500-EZ discussed above does not operate as an extension of time to file the PBGC Form 1. Information relating to the PBGC Form 1 is available at www.pbgc.gov. or by calling 1-800-736-2444.

Additional information about the automatic extension is available on the PWBA’s website at www.efast.dol.gov. Questions about Form 5500 filing requirements should be address to PWBA's EFAST Help Desk at 202/219-8770.

View More Press Releases by PWBA [U.S. Department of Labor, Pension and Welfare Benefits Administration]


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