Retirement Plans Newsletter

January 26, 2021 logo logo
Get Health & Welfare News   ·   Get Message Boards Digest   ·   Past Issues   ·   Search

Job Openings

View job as Retirement Plan Consultant for Jocelyn Pension Consulting
View job as Retirement Plan Consultant for Jocelyn Pension Consulting Retirement Plan Consultant

Jocelyn Pension Consulting
Telecommute / Boulder CO / CA

View job as Manager, Retirement Plan Administration for Children's Hospital of The King's Daughter's Health System Manager, Retirement Plan Administration

Children's Hospital of The King's Daughter's Health System
Norfolk VA

View job as Pathways Recent Graduate -- Save the Date -- Announcements Opening SOON for Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Pathways Recent Graduate -- Save the Date -- Announcements Opening SOON

Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
Telecommute / Woodlawn MD

View job as Investigator for Office for Civil Rights, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Investigator

Office for Civil Rights, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
Telecommute / Boston MA

►View More Jobs

►Post a Job

Get Job Alerts

Newly Posted
Webcasts, Conferences


New Topics on the BenefitsLink Message Boards

New Comments and Topics

All Topics, Grouped by Forum

This Newsletter:
Subscribe Now

BenefitsLink Health & Welfare Plans Newsletter:
Subscribe Now

Message Boards Digest:
Subscribe Now

[Guidance Overview]

DOL Releases Guidance on Addressing the Missing Participant Problem

"EBSA outlined best practices that it has found 'effective at minimizing and mitigating the problem of missing or nonresponsive participants' ... [P]lan administrators should review and determine how best to supplement their existing practices.... [If] audited a plan will be well-served if the plan administrator can point to the documented implementation of many of these best practices." Icon to read more


[Sponsored] EXCLUSIVE - Who’s the Employer (WTE)

WTE, 8th Edition, Authored by S. Derrin Watson, JD. Over 30% NEW material. Dozens of new examples. Full explanations of how employer and employee status impact testing. Improved organization -- easy to find answers. or 612-605-2266 Learn more

Sponsored by Burrmont Compliance Labs LLC

[Guidance Overview]

DOL Blesses Use of the PBGC Missing Participant Program for Terminating 401(k) Plans

"Use of the PBGC Missing Participants Program does not relieve plan fiduciaries from the duty to diligently search for missing participants and beneficiaries before assets are distributed.... Plan fiduciaries must otherwise comply with the requirements of the DOL safe harbor (although the required notices must be revised to reflect the transfer of the account to the PBGC, and to include the program's website and consumer contact number).... The PBGC's fees may be paid from the transferred accounts, unless prohibited by the plan document ... Plan fiduciaries may transfer accounts to the PBGC if the participant or beneficiary previously elected a lump sum but failed to cash the check prior to its 'cash-by' date " Icon to read more


[Guidance Overview]

Exceptional Usefulness and Quality iconUnclaimed Property Aspects of Retirement Assets

"Holders of tax-deferred retirement assets must weigh and balance significant owner-facing risks against a clear set of state-facing compliance requirements and risks (exposure to interest and penalty assessments when assets are not escheated or not timely escheated).... [T]he easiest answer may not be the one that properly balances the competing concerns." Icon to read more

Bloomberg Law

[Guidance Overview]

How to SECURE Your Safe Harbor Plan

"[IRS Notice 2020-86] provides guidance on the rules that apply to safe harbor plans that were changed by the [SECURE Act]. The guidance covers the increase in automatic contributions permitted under a qualified automatic contribution arrangement (or 'QACA') safe harbor plan, safe harbor notice requirement changes, and issues related to the retroactive adoption of safe harbor status." Icon to read more


Exceptional Usefulness and Quality icon2021 Defined Benefit (DB) Compliance Calendar

"This 2021 Compliance Calendar highlights critical compliance deadlines for defined benefit retirement plans. While all major dates are included, some may only apply to particular plans and there may be additional deadlines for specific plans that are not covered here. Be sure to consult counsel familiar with your unique retirement plan." Icon to read more

Cammack Retirement Group

Would Raising the Required Minimum Distribution Age for Retirement Accounts Enhance Old-Age Security?

"Changing RMD rules would likely have a negligible impact on tax revenue, while increasing flexibility for retirement savers. Raising (or eliminating) the RMD age has little effect on individuals' financial behaviors while they are still working. At retirement, the impact of raising the RMD age depends on whether the retiree wishes to bequeath wealth to someone else. For households without a bequest motive, the chance that a retiree would elect to withdraw less than the RMD is relatively low (between 2% and 4% depending on educational level). For households with a bequest motive, the probabilities are higher and vary between 6% and 12%." Icon to read more

TIAA Institute

Benefits of Multiple 403(b) Providers: Having a Choice Positively Affects Participant Behaviors

12 pages. "Key findings: [1] Provider choice leads to increased 403(b) participation, due to greater familiarity and higher engagement with participant's plan. [2] Better financial outcomes, such as higher annual contributions and higher median account balances, are linked to provider choice. [3] The presence of a 403(b) financial professional combined with provider choice results in even greater financial outcomes. [4] Industry best practices may improve processes for seamlessly managing multiple-provider 403(b) plans." Icon to read more


Democrats Revive Pension Funding Relief, Multiemployer Plan Reforms

"[T]he bill would narrow the current 10% interest rate corridor to 5%, effective retroactively to 2020, and delay the phaseout of the 5% corridor from 2021 until 2026.... [A] 5% floor would apply to 25-year interest rate averages to provide protection from extreme interest rate movements. The bill also calls for amortizing all funding shortfalls over 15 years, rather than seven years.... The bill would expand the [PBGC's] authority to partition troubled multiemployer pension plans and increase the number of plans eligible for partition, while streamlining the application process through 2024." Icon to read more


Senator Portman Announces Retirement, Eyes Final Reforms

"Portman [has long been] viewed by many retirement planning professionals as one of their top advocates in Congress ... Portman has not only held a leading position on the powerful Senate Finance Committee for many years -- including formerly being chairman of the Subcommittee on Social Security, Pensions and Family Policy -- he has been one of the main advocates of several popular pieces of retirement reform legislation supported by industry trade groups." Icon to read more

PLANSPONSOR; free registration may be required


Why Companies Should Ditch Their Stand-Along 401(k) and Join a 401(k) PEP

"If you are to look at the existing closed 401k market (this would be primarily business associations and other affiliated groups), it's possible to conclude PEPs can achieve both similar cost savings and enhanced value offering. This comes when the pool increases the number of participating employers and employees ... The potential reduction of significant fiduciary liability comes about because the existing plan sponsor is essentially handing off the bulk of the duties to a new plan sponsor -- the PPP.... delegating the retirement plan to a PEP gives company executives one less thing to worry about." Icon to read more

Fiduciary News; free registration required

Benefits in General

[Guidance Overview]

Consolidated Appropriations Act: Employee Benefits Provisions (PDF)

"[The CAA] includes many benefits and tax provisions affecting employers, group health plan sponsors, health benefits brokers and health insurance issuers. Some provisions are currently effective, while others begin on future dates. This Compliance Overview summarizes the employee benefits provisions relating to tax-favored accounts, surprise medical billing, health plan transparency and mental health parity. It also includes various tax credits, exclusions and deductions that may be of interest to employers, along with a brief discussion of key retirement plan provisions." Icon to read more

Cowden Associates, Inc.

2020 in Review: EBSA ERISA Enforcement

"Total monetary recoveries increased for the fifth year in a row, due to another year of historically high recoveries from EBSA's civil enforcement actions.... In FY 2020, 59 criminal investigations were closed with guilty pleas or convictions -- down from FY 2019's total of 80 -- representing the second year in a row where there was a decrease in the rate of results when compared to the increased total number of investigations closed[.]" Icon to read more

Eversheds Sutherland

Employees Aren't Eager to Return to the Office Post-COVID

"March 2021 will mark a year since the majority of U.S. employees had to switch to a remote work environment due to the COVID-19 pandemic.... [T]here is a disconnect between employers and employees when it comes to what the return to work may look like post-pandemic. Both agree that there will be some kind of hybrid model, where employees split their time between the home and office ... However, how often employees will work remotely is disputed between the two groups." Icon to read more


Executive Compensation
and Nonqualified Plans

[Guidance Overview]

IRS Releases Final Regs for Excise Tax on Executive Compensation Paid by Tax-Exempt Organizations

"The Final Regulations are largely unchanged from the proposed regulations issued in June 2020 ... providing only minor clarifications and some adjustments intended to ease compliance by taxpayers and falling short of wholesale interpretive changes that had been proposed by practitioners and tax-exempt organizations." Icon to read more

Ropes & Gray LLP

Selected Discussions
on the BenefitsLink Message Boards

► It's easy to sign up and participate in discussions! Post answers, ask questions, create custom feeds and views. Join your peers (and potential referral sources or customers)—there is no charge.

Compensation Definition for 401(k) Deferrals

"If a deferral-only plan wants to use a non-safe harbor definition of compensation for deferral purposes, such as excluding commissions, I believe there is no discrimination issue when the plan passes ADP testing using a definition of compensation that satisfies 414(s). The question is, are there any restrictions in the Code or regs (cites appreciated) for how compensation may be defined for deferral purposes -- with regard to reasonableness or nondiscrimination and so forth?" Icon to read more

BenefitsLink Message Boards

Are You Using Identity-Proving Services?

"I been doing some research on e-signatures, and came across a method of identifying that an individual is who they say they are: -- which sounds awfully important, especially when some terminated employee comes back 10 years later for his or her money, having moved 3 times, etc. Anyone ever used something like this?" Icon to read more

BenefitsLink Message Boards

Rule of Parity Cheat Sheet

"See the attached. I'm very happy with this. Every time rule of parity would come up I would research for an hour. I finally wrote this down. Let me know what you think! I would incorporate suggestions and reshare." Icon to read more

BenefitsLink Message Boards

► Subscribe to the BenefitsLink Message Boards Digest -- a free daily email of all new discussions (not just the selected few shown above). View a sample issue.

Press Releases

Most Popular Items in the Previous Issue

Biden Administration to Review Rules for Employee Health and Retirement Plans
Society for Human Resource Management [SHRM]; membership may be required to view article

View COVID-19 News and Resources, Inc.
56 Creeksong Road
Whittier, North Carolina 28789
(407) 644-4146

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

BenefitsLink Retirement Plans Newsletter, ISSN no. 1536-9587. Copyright 2021, 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 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  |   Change Email Address  |   Privacy Policy