Message Boards Digest

December 17, 2019

Here are the most recently added topics on the BenefitsLink Message Boards:

rocknrolls2 created a topic in Health Plans (Including ACA, COBRA, HIPAA)

When Will Enrollment in Medicare Part D Cause A Participant to Lose Medical Coverage?

"I am working with an employer that has a plan that covers eligible retired employees. If the coverage is considered creditable, would a retiree's enrollment in Medicare Part D result in the retiree's loss of coverage under the employer's medical plan? What if the coverage is non-creditable and the employee enrolls in Medicare Part D. Would this result in the retiree's loss of coverage under the employer's plan? Can you provide a citation to a US Code provision or a regulation citation that supports your position?"

Number of replies posted  0 replies      Number of times viewed  21 views      Add Reply
[Advert.] -- Save Time and Money!

Sponsored by Burrmont Compliance Labs LLC
Explore our Compliance ReSources; including our Ask the Author Service. Modern on-line platform -- Intuitive search -- Continually updated -- Government Source links. We can help you. Free Trial. Contact us at: or 612-605-2266

Peter Gulia created a topic in Communication and Disclosure to Participants

402(f) Notice Distributed Fewer Than 30 Days Before Terminating Plan Makes Final Distributions; Consequences?

"The Treasury department's rule under Internal Revenue Code Section 402(f) calls for an administrator to deliver a Section 402(f) written explanation 'no less than 30 days . . . before the date of [the] distribution.' Internal Revenue Code Section 6652(i) imposes a penalty of $100 on each failure to deliver a Section 402(f) written explanation. To speed up a plan termination's final distribution, an administrator is considering deliberately incurring that penalty. In the circumstances, that amount is much less than the business harm that would result from not completing the plan's termination by December 30. I've already analyzed ERISA Title I consequences, including about the fiduciary's potential obedience and prudence breaches. Is it so that an administrator's compliance with Section 402(f) is not a Section 401(a) condition for a plan's tax-qualified treatment? The plan's governing document does not state any provision or command based on Section 402(f)."

Number of replies posted  8 replies      Number of times viewed  70 views      Add Reply

pmacduff created a topic in Distributions and Loans, Other than QDROs

1099-R Forms: When Is a 'Total Distribution'?

"Plan has individual accounts with a large recordkeeper (401k and safe harbor) and a pooled, Trustee-directed employer profit share investment. TPA prepares 1099-R forms for the client for any distribution from the pooled Trustee-directed PS accounts. In majority of termination (or retirement) payouts the participant takes the 401k piece at the time of termination and the profit share piece is paid out after the end of the plan year following termination; both per the plan provisions.  However in rare cases the participant may be taking the PS portion first.  In these cases should the 1099-R form from the pooled accts NOT have the 'total distribution' boxed checked?  Does it matter? Perhaps am overthinking this but it seems to be that if the 401(k) portion remains in the Plan, even briefly, it is not a total distribution until those funds are paid. Not a fan of these types of plans!

For anyone else wondering - here are the form instructions:

'Box 2b. Total Distribution - Enter an "X" in this box only if the payment shown in box 1 is a total distribution. A total distribution is one or more distributions within 1 tax year in which the entire balance of the account is distributed. If periodic or installment payments are made, mark this box in the year the final payment is made.' So as long as they both occur in the same tax year I can mark the total box."

Number of replies posted  2 replies      Number of times viewed  50 views      Add Reply

cheersmate created a topic in 401(k) Plans

Failure to Withhold Deferrals from Bonuses

"Bonuses being paid today. Employer failed to withhold pretax deferrals from some (not all) participants' bonus paychecks being distributed today. The Plan affords participants to make a special election with regard to bonus pay. If no election is made, zero is withheld. Upon reviewing the 'bonus payroll' process, the employer realized the error but the funds were already 'in process' to the participant's banks and could not be reversed/corrected in time. Because the error was caught the same day, is the correction to issue a Notice to those affected along with a deferral election form, giving them the opportunity to withhold what would have been withheld from their respective bonus (or some other amount at their discretion) via the upcoming final regular paycheck of the year? I believe all will receive sufficient final paychecks to adequately cover this missed deferral. If not, does this change the correction?"

Number of replies posted  2 replies      Number of times viewed  50 views      Add Reply

BG5150 created a topic in Retirement Plans in General

Changing the Calculation of Minimum Required Service for Vesting Purposes

"What are the hurdles to changing the vesting percentage computation basis? A plan currently has 1,000 hours for YOS for vesting. Can it easily change from hours counting to equivalancy or even elapsed time?"

Number of replies posted  1 reply      Number of times viewed  41 views      Add Reply

RatherBeGolfing created a topic in Retirement Plans in General

SECURE Act Is Attached to the 2020 Appropriations Bill!

Expected to be passed by Friday! See

Number of replies posted  5 replies      Number of times viewed  75 views      Add Reply

baileybear created a topic in 401(k) Plans

Need a Separate EIN for a Sole Proprietor's Plan?

"Our client, a Sole Proprietor, has a 1-person retirement plan. The assets are under the minimum amount required to file form 5500-EZ. This year, the employer was required to take his first RMD and therefore we need to prepare a 1099-R. This plan does not have an Employer Identification Number -- just the sole proprietor's Social Security Number. It's my understanding that an EIN number is required if a Sole Proprietor opens a solo retirement plan, and that one should not use the employer's EIN number on a 1099-R -- so an EIN for the plan's trust should be applied for. The employer says the trust is considered a grantor trust and therefore we are to use his Social Security Number in place of an EIN or a trust EIN. I am not sure how to reply or if I need to reply."

Number of replies posted  2 replies      Number of times viewed  28 views      Add Reply

MarZDoates created a topic in Correction of Plan Defects

Participant Missed Opportunity for Deferrals -- EPCRS Correction Unclear

"Plan is a safe harbor 401(k) using an automatic contribution arrangement to satisfy the 401(k) safe harbor requirements. Plan sponsor failed to implement an employee's affirmative election. I'm reading EPCRS. One part says that the plan sponsor has to make a QNEC. Another part says that sponsor does not have to make a QNEC if the failure was corrected within 9-1/2 months after the end of the plan year. Does this 'special safe harbor correction method' apply to traditional automatic contributions only? Or does it apply to QACA arrangements?"

Number of replies posted  1 reply      Number of times viewed  19 views      Add Reply

Young Curmudgeon created a topic in Defined Benefit Plans, Including Cash Balance

Spousal Attribution: When Does It Start?

"Is there any transition or grace period before family attribution between spouses applies? Details: Business owner A marries Business owner B in a community property state on 5/1/19. Are the immediately a controlled group for 2019 or could I treat this like an acquisition and apply the transition period for coverage?"

Number of replies posted  0 replies      Number of times viewed  14 views      Add Reply

RodeoWrigley created a topic in Health Plans (Including ACA, COBRA, HIPAA)

Self-Funded Benefits Plan Approval Request Under Service Contract Act ('SCA')?

"I've been having trouble finding information about self-funded health benefits plan approval requests under the Service Contract Act. The regulation is only three short sentences, and doesn't give much to go by. 29 CFR § 4.171(b)(2) says: 'A contractor may request approval by the Administrator of an unfunded self-insured plan in order to allow credit for payments under the plan to meet the fringe benefit requirements of the Act. In considering whether such a plan is bona fide, the Administrator will consider such factors as whether it could be reasonably anticipated to provide the prescribed benefits, whether it represents a legally enforceable commitment to provide such benefits, whether it is carried out under a financially responsible program, and whether the plan has been communicated to the employees in writing. The Administrator in his/her discretion may direct that assets be set aside and preserved in an escrow account or that other protections be afforded to meet the plan's future obligation.' I found a thread from 2004, but I'm wondering whether anyone is willing to share more recent experience and insight regarding self-funded plan approval requests."

Number of replies posted  1 reply      Number of times viewed  15 views      Add Reply, Inc.
1298 Minnesota Avenue, Suite H
Winter Park, Florida 32789
(407) 644-4146

Lois Baker, J.D., President
David Rhett Baker, J.D., Editor and Publisher
Holly Horton, Business Manager

Copyright 2019, Inc. All materials contained in this mailing are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of, Inc., or in the case of third party materials, the owner of those materials. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notices from copies of the content.

Links to web sites other than and are offered as a service to our readers; we were not involved in their production and are not responsible for their content.

Unsubscribe | Privacy Policy