Retirement Plans Newsletter

August 20, 2020

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[Guidance Overview]

DOL Issues Interim Final Rule on Lifetime Income Disclosure

"The Interim Rule requires plans to also show participants the amount of estimated monthly payments they could receive ... over the life expectancy of a participant and a spouse by assuming that the participant is married (even if the participant is not actually married) and that the participant's spouse is the same age as the participant (regardless of a spouse's actual age).... This disclosure must be provided even where the plan does not provide any form of payment other than a lump sum.... The effective date of the Interim Rule is 12 months after it is published in the Federal Register."

RSM US

[Guidance Overview]

DOL Regs Implement Lifetime Income Disclosure Requirement in SECURE Act

"The DOL declined to request public comment before issuing the interim final regulations due to the SECURE Act's requirement that regulations be issued within one year. However, the DOL took into account comments responding to a 2010 request for information and 2013 proposed regulations, and invites additional comments. The interim final regulations take effect one year after their publication in the Federal Register, but the preamble indicates that the DOL plans to adopt a final rule before that date."

Thomson Reuters / EBIA

[Guidance Overview]

Rehiring Terminated Employees by the End of the 2020 Plan Year May Help Avoid a Partial Plan Termination

"In [a recent set of Q&As], the IRS stated that an employee who was terminated due to the impact of COVID-19, and is rehired prior to the end of the 2020 plan year, generally should not be treated as having suffered an employer-initiated severance from employment when determining whether a partial termination has occurred. While the IRS' position is not a surprising result, it does provide plan sponsors facing rehire decisions with additional clarity regarding how rehires will impact the partial termination analysis."

Bond, Schoeneck & King

[Guidance Overview]

PBGC Premium Savings with Quarterly Contributions

"Plan sponsors who have continued their 2020 plan year contributions will earn PBGC premium savings by reassigning the 2020 quarterly contributions to the 2019 plan year.... The savings to the variable rate premium is approximately 4.3 percent of the amount of contributions reassigned to the 2019 plan year.... A PBGC premium savings option also is available for plan sponsors who have planned to delay all 2020 contributions until December 31, 2020 -- if they are willing to accelerate all of the delayed contributions ... to October 15, 2020."

Findley

[Guidance Overview]

Withdrawal Liability Assessments by Multiemployer Pension Plans (PDF)

10 pages. "This practice note discusses withdrawal liability under [ERISA], as amended by the Multiemployer Pension Plan Amendments Act (MPPAA). The practice note discusses the procedural requirements for responding to withdrawal liability assessments and the mechanism for challenging such assessments [under] ERISA sections 4201-4225."

Fox Rothschild LLP, via Lexis Practice Advisor

[Guidance Overview]

Complications When Undoing Unwanted 2020 RMDs Before August 31

"[W]hat happens when a client took an in-kind distribution earlier this year to satisfy their required minimum distribution[?] In many instances, the value of the distributed asset may have appreciated substantially since they were distributed. If the distribution was made from an IRA, retirees must return the same property that was taken out (as if the distribution was never made in the first place), regardless of how much the value of the property increased (or decreased) in the past few months. For those who may have already (incorrectly) returned cash to try and complete a rollover of the in-kind distribution, two steps are required to 'fix' the 'problem' without any penalties."

Nerd's Eye View

[Guidance Overview]

Upcoming Deadline iconSECURE Act Requires Inclusion of Part-Time Employees

"[Plan sponsors] are required to implement administrative procedures by the beginning of 2021 to determine whether [part-time] employees satisfy the new requirements.... [P]lan sponsors also may want to make part-time employees who satisfy the new criteria eligible for any employer contributions, in order to avoid administering dual eligibility rules. Sponsors also must determine whether part-time employees will be excluded from nondiscrimination and coverage testing."

Spencer Fane

New Lifetime Income Disclosure Regs Implement SECURE Act Requirement

"The rule provides a set of assumptions to use in preparing the lifetime income illustrations, as well as model language that may be used for benefit statements.... The interim final rule will be effective 12 months after the date of its publication in the Federal Register ... [and] includes a 60-day comment period."

ERISA Benefits Law, PLLC

IRS Proposes Regs on Extended Rollover Period for Qualified Plan Loan Offset Amounts

"Since the QPLO rules have been in effect since 2018, it is helpful that the proposed regulations can be relied on immediately. And the 12-month test for determining whether an offset was due to a severance from employment should be useful to plan administrators because, as the preamble explains, QPLOs and other plan loan offsets are reported differently on Form 1099-R."

Thomson Reuters / EBIA

How Successful Is Your Retirement Savings Program? Ask This Simple Question

"[O]ne question that many plan sponsors fail to ask of their recordkeeper ... may be one of the most telling gauges of retirement plan success: 'How many retirement plan participants have never logged into their online retirement plan account?' In many plans, that number is shockingly high, either because plan sponsors fail to pay attention to it and/or recordkeepers/TPAs fail to improve it. Let's take a look at the detrimental effects of participants not accessing online accounts."

Cammack Retirement Group

Sustainability Matters: Overwhelming Opposition to Proposed Regulation Limiting the Use of ESG in Retirement Plans

"[T]he DOL provided for only a 30-day comment period on a matter of significant and growing interest to investors and retirement-plan participants and beneficiaries. Despite this unusually short comment period, the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking drew 8,737 comments, including several petition letters signed by thousands of individuals.... 95% of comments were opposed [to the proposal]."

Morningstar

The Proposed DOL ESG Regulation and the Public Reaction

"Many commenters suggested that the proposed regulations be significantly revised, and there appeared to be broad agreement on two revisions: [1] The regulation should permit an investment alternative may be a qualified default investment alternative for a self-directed plan regardless of whether the alternative makes any use of ESG/Sustainable consideration, such as using the S&P® index; and [2] The regulation should distinguish between the use of ESG/Sustainable considerations to determine the economic value of an investment[.]"

Law Offices of Albert Feuer, via SSRN

Will Retirement Plan Contributions Be Forgiven Under the Paycheck Protection Program?

"The FAQ rules could be interpreted to provide that 2019 employer contributions paid during either the 8-week or the 24-week Covered Period can be forgiven. However, the PPP EZ Loan Forgiveness application form limits the forgiveness of employer retirement contributions on behalf of owner-employees to 2.5 months of their 2019 contribution amounts."

Employee Benefits Law Group

Exceptional Usefulness and Quality iconEnrolled Actuaries Pension Examination Program (PDF)

36 pages. Syllabus for November 2020 Pension EA-2 (Segment F); May 2021 Basic (EA-1); and May 2021 Pension EA-2 (Segment L) examinations. Rev. Aug. 3, 2020.

American Society of Pension Professionals & Actuaries [ASPPA]; Joint Board for the Enrollment of Actuaries [JBEA]; Society of Actuaries

Only 1 in 5 of the 143 Largest Public Pensions Is Strong

"Only one in five of the 143 largest statewide public retirement systems in the U.S. are resilient, [according to] a new analysis ... Public sector funding peaked in 2001, with nearly 3 out of 4 statewide plans 90 percent funded or better. By 2020, one in five statewide plans have a 'resilient funded' status."

InsuranceNewsNet.com

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Withdrawal of Excess Annual Additions from Sole Proprietor's Plan

"Fact pattern: In April 2018, sole proprietor sends in $18,000 as a head start on her 401(k) for the 2018 year. After the 2018 taxes are prepared by the CPA, the Schedule C shows a loss from self-employment earnings. In April 2019, a distribution is processed from the plan for the 18,000 plus earnings, as a correction of excess annual additions. No income = no contributions. The CPA doesn't understand why the $18,327.15 is considered taxable income for 2019. (At least, not the $18,000 part.) Should the CPA have reflected the $18,000 as a deduction on the 2018 Form 1040 as self-employed retirement plan contributions?"

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Press Releases

Segal's Howard Fluhr Named EBRI Lillywhite Award Recipient
EBRI [Employee Benefit Research Institute]

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BenefitsLink Retirement Plans Newsletter, ISSN no. 1536-9587. Copyright 2020 BenefitsLink.com, 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 BenefitsLink.com, 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.

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