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Employee Benefits Jobs

Sr Compliance Specialist / Manager -- ERISA Compliance
Simpkins & Associates
in TX

Jr. Account Manager / Loan and Distribution Processor
National Retirement Services, Inc.
in CA

Retirement Plan Specialist
Arnold & Porter LLP
in DC

Customer Service Representative (Temporary)
University of California Office of the President
in CA

Human Resources Technician (Benefits)
Kern Community College District
in CA

Senior DC Compliance Administrator
Simpkins & Associates
in TX, Telecommute

401(k) Plan Administrator
Mann Associates
in IL

Conversion Consultant (Retirement Plans)
Aspire Financial Services LLC
in FL

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Webcasts and Conferences

ACA 1094/1095 Employer Reporting Year 2
October 27, 2016 WEBCAST
Frenkel Benefits, LLC

2016 Plan Sponsor Basics: Plan Audit Issues
November 16, 2016 WEBCAST
Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP

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[Official Guidance]

IRS Explanation, Worksheet (Alert Guidelines), and Deficiency Checksheet: Required Distributions (PDF)
10 pages; revised April 2016. This single PDF document includes Publication 7004, Form 8387, and Form 8399. Excerpt: "The purpose of Worksheet Number 9 (Form 8387) and this explanation is to assist the specialist in determining whether a plan satisfies the distribution requirements of Internal Revenue Code section 401(a)(9), in accordance with the Final and Temporary regulations under section 401(a)(9). However, for plans in existence prior to 2003, required minimum distributions may have been made in accordance with previous proposed regulations published in 1987 and 2001." [Cycle A Submission Period, 2/1/2016 through 1/31/2017]
Internal Revenue Service [IRS]

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[Guidance Overview]

Your 401(k) Plan 'Brokerage Window' May Require An S-8 Registration
"[T]he SEC set out standards a 401(k) plan sponsor should follow to keep its involvement from constituting an 'offer for sale' of a security such that registration would be required. Under these standards, plan sponsors should do no more than: [1] announce the existence of the 401(k) plan (sponsors may describe the self-directed 'brokerage window' as part of the investment alternatives but should take no action to draw employees' attention to the possibility of investing in employer securities); [2] make payroll deductions; and [3] pay administrative expenses, which cannot be tied to particular investments selected by employees. All communications of a soliciting nature should come from the broker."
Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft LLP

[Guidance Overview]

Fundamentals of Section 415(b) (PDF)
8 pages. "In some plans, it may be obvious that no one is affected by the Section 415(b) limit. In most other plans, simplified procedures may be applied to test the vast majority of retiring participant's benefits against the Section 415(b) limit and to isolate those few individuals whose benefits are close enough to the applicable limit to warrant detailed testing. In most cases, detailed testing will require the services of one or more outside experts[.]"
Gabriel, Roeder, Smith and Company

[Guidance Overview]

Interesting Angles on the DOL's Fiduciary Rule, Part 21
"[T]he DOL has historically taken the position that a prudent process for advice to retirement plans must be documented. That could easily be extended to advice to IRAs as well. In fact, there is a specific documentation retention requirement under BICE. Second, there is an argument that, if a fiduciary adviser cannot obtain -- through the investigation -- enough information to formulate a prudent recommendation, the adviser needs to abstain from making a recommendation."

DOL Fiduciary Rule: A To-Do List for Plan Sponsors (PDF)
"[C]urrent employment arrangements for employees providing investment advice ... should be conformed before the applicability date (April 10, 2017).... [I]nvestment education materials, rollover and distribution forms, call center scripts, human resources procedures and related processes should be refined to reflect the modified rules.... Develop a procedure, or modify existing procedures, for ongoing monitoring of plan service providers and the information they are providing to participants ... Adapt existing plan practices and procedures to accept, and be prepared to receive and evaluate, the additional documentation and disclosures expected from product and service providers."
Sutherland Asbill & Brennan LLP


Celebrate ASPPA's Golden Anniversary!

Sponsored by ASPPA

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New EPCU Compliance Project: SIMPLE IRA Plans - Eligible Sponsors
"[Q1:] Why did I receive an EPCU compliance check letter? [A:] The information we have indicates you sponsor a SIMPLE IRA Plan, but appear to employ more than 100 employees who earn at least $5,000. [Q2:] What is the EPCU attempting to determine? [A:] Our goal is to ensure that employers sponsoring a SIMPLE IRA Plan are eligible to sponsor those plans."
Internal Revenue Service [IRS]

New EPCU Compliance Project: Partial Termination
"[Q1:] Why did I receive an EPCU Compliance Check Letter? [A1:] You filed a Form 5500 series return indicating that the plan had a significant decrease in plan participants. Employers who have a decrease of 20% or more in participation may have experienced a partial termination. [Q2:] What is the EPCU attempting to determine? [A2:] We want to determine if the plan did experience a partial termination and did the plan administrators comply with the vesting requirements of Internal Revenue Code (IRC) section 411(d)(3). Additionally, we want to determine the accuracy of the information provided on Form 5500."
Internal Revenue Service [IRS]

Report of EPCU Completed Project: Partial Termination/Partial Vesting
"Over a span of 3 years, nearly 2,000 letters were sent. Approximately half of the contacts were due to errors on the Form 5500 return.... Taxpayers made errors in participant counts. Also, a significant number of plans had fully vested all their participants as a result of a partial termination but it was indicated on their Form 5500 that there were participants who were not fully vested. The plan administrators misinterpreted the Form 5500. They counted eligible participants who chose not to participate in their 401(k) plan as not being fully vested."
Internal Revenue Service [IRS]

Report of EPCU Completed Project: Ineligible Employer -- 403(b) Plans
"Responses showed that the majority of the plan sponsors were educational organizations still eligible to sponsor their IRC Section 403(b) plan. However, some employers incorrectly reported IRC Section 403(b) plan deferrals in box 12 showing that the accuracy of the box 12 codes is still a concern."
Internal Revenue Service [IRS]

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Report of EPCU Completed Project: 412(i) Support Project
"Not all 412(i) plans are abusive. However, some taxpayers were trying to use the specially designed life insurance policies in retirement plans to take excessive deductions and avoid paying taxes they properly owed. Other sponsors merely failed to follow the specific rules that apply to 412(i) plans. The deductions claimed generally weren't greater than the deductions that would have been allowable for a non-412(i) plan. Finally, some 412(i) plans have form and/or operational failures that would cause the plan to lose its qualified status."
Internal Revenue Service [IRS]

EPCU Compliance Project: 5310-A Filing Project, Phase II
"[Q1:] Why did I receive an EPCU Compliance Check Letter? [A1:] This compliance check project will focus on plan sponsors who filed Form(s) 5310-A, Notice of Plan Merger, or Consolidation, Spinoff, or Transfer of Plan Assets or Liabilities; Notice of Qualified Separate Lines of Business with the [IRS].... [Q2:] What is the EPCU attempting to determine? [A2:] We want to clarify the reason for filing the form, its relationship pertaining to plan asset movement, and whether timely compliance under IRC section 6652(e) was met. In addition to timely filing, this project is focusing on trust and operational related areas of the plan based on the merger, consolidation, spinoff, or transfer of plan assets or liabilities."
Internal Revenue Service [IRS]

Expanded Distribution Options Next Step in DC Plan Design
"Employers are considering adding distribution options to their defined contribution plans in response to demands from employees for retirement income security ... Options such as installment payments, periodic withdrawals or annuity payments could enhance retirement income security more than the all-or-nothing approach of a full withdrawal of amounts from the plan ... Plan sponsors also stand to benefit from keeping more of the participants' assets in the plan."
Bloomberg BNA

State of Emergency: Your Employees' Rainy Day Fund
"While this dedication to increasing retirement readiness is extremely important, you may be losing sight of another important aspect of your employees' financial well-being: Emergency Savings. In a recent survey from Bankrate, it was found that 63% of Americans would not have enough in savings to pay for a $1,000 emergency."


American Benefits Council Letter to EBSA on Proposed Rule Regarding Savings Arrangements Established by State Political Subdivisions for Non-Governmental Employees
"[The Council is] very concerned that the recently finalized safe harbor for state-run arrangements takes a significant step backward by facilitating state laws that undermine the current retirement system by increasing the costs and complexity for employers that maintain retirement plans. Unless adjustments are made to the safe harbor to prevent such results, extending the safe harbor to additional jurisdictions with QPS-run arrangements will only subject existing plan sponsors to even more cost and complexity and further discourage new plan sponsorship."
American Benefits Council

Executive Compensation and Nonqualified Plans

[Guidance Overview]

The Proposed 457(f) and 409A Regulations: A Closer Look
"When IRC section 409A and its related regulations came into being, it was thought that this might be the beginning of the end for the use of so-called 'rolling risks' for forfeiture in 457(f) plans.... The proposed 457(f) regulations make it clear that rolling risks of forfeiture continue to be permitted, but that substantial future services must generally be performed for at least two years (among other restrictions), and that the present value of the deferred compensation must be at least 125% of the compensation that the employee would have received had the agreement not been extended."
Cammack Retirement Group

Press Releases

DOL Files Complaint to Recover More Than $29K in Losses to the Weinhagen Tire Co. Inc. 401(k) Plan
Employee Benefits Security Administration [EBSA], U.S. Department of Labor

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BenefitsLink Retirement Plans Newsletter, ISSN no. 1536-9587. Copyright 2016, Inc. All materials contained in this newsletter 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 that content. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content.

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