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Message Boards Digest

May 27, 2020

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

AdKu created a topic in 401(k) Plans

Top Heavy Minimum When Plan Has Dual Eligibility

"There were no age and service requirements for deferral but there was a 1-year wait for all other contributions. My understanding is that, whenever a plan has dual eligibility, those who don't meet the 1-year wait are entitled to the top heavy minimum regardless of what type of safe harbor contribution the plan offers, including a safe harbor match. Some of the participants didn't defer. Please help me better understand the applicable top heavy rules in this situation."

6 replies   |    95 views   |    Add Reply

Dalai Pookah created a topic in Defined Benefit Plans, Including Cash Balance

What Are PBGC Criteria for 'Active Participant' in Professional Service DB Plan?

"Is there any regulation for determining who is an active participant under a professional service DB plan? It appears the regulations under ERISA Section 4006.2 may be obsolete. I don't see any regulations under 29 USC Section 1321 (ERISA Section 4021), which sets up the exemption. I'm looking at a cash balance plan with 22 definitely actives, two eligibles but with a $0 HAC, and two terminated participants with accrued benefits. There are different definitions for different purposes, but the definition of 'active participant' for this purpose is elusive. By some definitions there are 26 actives, 24 actives, and 22 actives. Any direction is appreciated."

6 replies   |    46 views   |    Add Reply

HollyD created a topic in Operating a TPA or Consulting Firm

Your Favorite Time Tracking Software?

"Does anyone have a software that they love for tracking billable (and non-billable) time?"

0 replies   |    23 views   |    Add Reply

cheersmate created a topic in 401(k) Plans

When Does Absent Employee Cease to Be an Employee of the Employer?

"California employer sponsors Safe Harbor 401k plan. Eligibility waiting period is 1 Year of Service (12 mos, 1000 hrs). Plan Entry Dates: 1/1 and 7/1 coincident with/following waiting period.

Employee 'A' is hired 3/15/2019 on full-time basis. Projected Entry Date is 7/1/2020. On approximately 1/15/2020, 'A' apparently moves and does not show up for work, without any notice to the employer/plan sponsor. Sometime thereafter the employer learns 'A' claims to have become disabled after moving and has filed for state (and/or federal) disability. 'A's request was denied, apparently due to failure to satisfy disability criteria. 'A' had worked more than 1000 hours from Date of Hire (3/15/2019) through the last day 'A' reported for work (approx. 1/15/2020).

To date, 'A' has not been in contact with the employer/plan sponsor. The employer does not want to send in a termination notice because it fears 'A' may sue, claiming termination due to disability.

The employer/plan sponsor wants to know if 'A' must be provided with enrollment materials at this time (based on 7/1/2020 entry date). They would prefer not to reach out if it is not necessary.

The plan provides:

1.63 'Period of Severance' means a continuous period of time during which an Employee is not employed by the Employer. Such period begins on the date the Employee retires, quits or is discharged, or if earlier, the twelve (12) month anniversary of the date on which the Employee was otherwise first absent from service.

[1] At what point is 'A' no longer an employee of the employer? [2]If 'A' is still an employee, albeit an "inactive" employee, when is the employer obligated to provide Enrollment Materials? [3] If 'A' is still an employee, albeit an 'inactive' employee, what determines termination/severance from employment? Does CA employment law provide a standard for this situation, or, any federal guidelines?

It seems worst case scenario is 'A' continues to be an employee, and, since 'A' has 1000+ hours and more than 12 months have elapsed since date of hire, 'A' is eligible with an entry date of July 1. Or would it be the date 'A' returns to service if later?

Failure of the employer to provide Enrollment Materials at this time (or later if eligibility entry date is later date) can be corrected, but if 'A' earns zero then correction will result in $0 contributions due.

Any help and/or insight is appreciated. Thank you."

7 replies   |    79 views   |    Add Reply

Belgarath created a topic in Employee Stock Ownership Plans (ESOPs)

ESOP Diversification Error -- How to Fix?

"Had a referral of an employer that sponsors an ESOP and a 401(k) plan. We referred it to another TPA. Too much of a mess, and ESOP's aren't our thing. But I wonder about something, for my own edification. The plan's diversification provisions provide that the amount may be transferred to the company's 401(k) plan. But some number of prior diversification amounts were distributed in cash. How would that be corrected? I don't see any way to fix, other than to go through VCP and ask the IRS to bless a retroactive amendment permitting a distribution in cash."

2 replies   |    31 views   |    Add Reply

Sophia Wang created a topic in 401(k) Plans

Pay Back a Loan After Deemed Distribution? Even After Form 1099R Issued?

"Employee stopped working for the company, causing a default on the loan that had been taken out for purchase of primary home. Loan is considered a 'deemed distribution' so a Form 1099R was issued. Time passes. Now over a year. Employee calls saying tax return for the previous year has not yet been filed, although 1099R was received. Can employee still pay back the loan, and not use the 1099R when filing for tax for the previous year?"

5 replies   |    56 views   |    Add Reply

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