logo logo

Retirement Plans Newsletter

October 23, 2023

2 New Job Opportunities 2 New Job Opportunities


[Official Guidance]

Draft of 2023 Instructions for IRS Form 8955-SSA: Annual Registration Statement Identifying Separated Participants With Deferred Vested Benefits (PDF)

8 pages; Oct. 20, 2023. "Form 8955-SSA ... is used to satisfy the reporting requirements of section 6057(a). Form 8955-SSA is a stand-alone reporting form filed with the IRS.... DO NOT file Form 8955-SSA with Form 5500 ... or Form 5500-SF ... Use Form 8955-SSA to report information relating to each participant who separated from service covered by the plan and is entitled to a deferred vested benefit under the plan but is not paid this retirement benefit." [Also available: Draft of 2023 Form 8955-SSA]  MORE >>

Internal Revenue Service [IRS]

[Guidance Overview]

Potential Impact on Retirement Plan Sponsors of the Upcoming DOL Proxy Voting Requirement Effective Date

"Although the proxy voting requirement applies to investment managers of private investment funds that are subject to ERISA, rather than [to] retirement plan sponsors, investment managers that choose to adopt new investment policies in accordance with the DOL Rule must reach out to their plan clients to obtain their acceptance of such policies. If a plan fiduciary is contacted for this purpose, the fiduciary must assess whether the investment manager's investment policy statement and proxy voting policy are consistent with ERISA before deciding to retain the investment manager."  MORE >>

Haynes and Boone, LLP

[Guidance Overview]

2024 Mortality Tables Update

"Under the Final Regulations, all funding valuations on or after January 1, 2024, are required to use generational mortality tables as the standard, or default, mortality assumption. Small plans may use static combined mortality tables instead.... The Final Regulations provide welcome relief to small plans by allowing the use of static combined male and female mortality tables but eliminated past years' options of using annuitant and non-annuitant versions (each gender specific) of static mortality tables.... Plans using substitute mortality tables may continue to do so for funding valuations until the proposed regulations are finalized."  MORE >>


Supreme Court Declines to Clarify Enforceability of Mandatory Arbitration for Fiduciary Breach

"[T]he Supreme Court declined to hear appeals of the Third and Tenth Circuit cases which had held arbitration provisions unenforceable, signaling that it would not clarify questions regarding the enforceability of class action waivers and mandatory arbitration agreements for fiduciary breach claims in ERISA plans any time soon." [Harrison v. Envision Mgmt. Holding, Inc. Bd. of Directors, No. 22-1098 (10th Cir. Feb. 9, 2023; Argent Trust Co. v. Harrison, No. 23-30, cert. denied Oct. 4, 2023); Henry v. Wilmington Trust NA, No. 21-2801 (3d Cir. Jun. 30, 2023; cert. pet. denied Oct. 16, 2023)]  MORE >>

Kilpatrick Townsend

Investment Committee Best Practices: If a Prudent Decision Was Made and No One Documented It, Did It Happen?

"[B]est practices call for a well-structured, governed, and documented investment committee tasked with selecting and monitoring the plan's investments.... [W]hat more can you do to protect yourself from similar claims? A good place to gain insights are the lawsuits themselves and the handful of related published opinions."  MORE >>

Bricker Graydon

How Retirement Security Litigation Has Impacted the Defined Contribution Landscape

"Litigation has led to changes in plan design such as encouraging open architecture, which features products from multiple providers rather than just those offered by a plan's record keeper ... Lawsuits also have prompted ... increased fiduciary attention to the offering of company stock in 401(k) plans, focusing on services and documenting activities due to ERISA's emphasis on process, ... Although DC industry members often speak harshly of ERISA lawsuits, some research shows sponsors are not only paying attention but also acting to reduce litigation risk."  MORE >>

Pensions & Investments

Now Is the Time to Adopt Discretionary and Required 2023 Amendments

"Fortunately for plan sponsors, the list is short for required amendments to adopt before the 2023 year-end.... The 2022 RA List does not list any required amendments for which December 31, 2024, would be the last day of the remedial amendment period. Some of the changes made by SECURE Act 2.0 to qualified plans and 403(b) plans will become effective in 2024, however."  MORE >>

Calfee, Halter & Griswold LLP

Best Practices To Vet a Vendor's Cybersecurity Practices

"How can asset owners, plan sponsors and plan advisers scope out the bona fides of cybersecurity vendors, whose expertise is key to protecting networks and other digital assets from breaches?"  MORE >>


Federal Auto-IRA Bill Re-Introduced

"The 2023 version of the bill [S 3102] is similar to the 2022 version. The contribution limits are the same as regular IRAs, and the contributions are post-tax. The program would be administered by the Department of the Treasury and would feature a 1% automatic match and up to a 4% tax credit match that would be phased out with income. The program would also automatically enroll participants at 3% of their income, with an option to opt out or increase their contributions."  MORE >>

PLANSPONSOR; free registration may be required


SPARK Institute Comment Letter to EBSA on SECURE 2.0 Reporting and Disclosure Requirements (PDF)

15 pages. "[T]he Department's existing e-delivery framework has struck the right balance by fostering the use of e-delivery and all of its associated benefits, while also incorporating regulatory safeguards that ensure participants can access their documents, are given the right to request paper, and are given timely notices about how to exercise that right.... [T]he SPARK Institute strongly encourages the Department, in reviewing its e-delivery guidance, to only make those changes that are absolutely necessary to implement SECURE 2.0's directions."  MORE >>

The SPARK Institute


SPARK Institute Comment Letter to SEC on AI Proposal (PDF)

"[T]he Proposal will negatively impact a variety of powerful tools and guidance that SPARK members make available to Americans saving in 401(k), 403(b) and 457(b) retirement plans ... [B]ecause of the expansive scope of the tools, programs, guidance, and even spreadsheets that the Proposal covers, SPARK members that provide recordkeeping and other services to defined contribution plans but also happen to be regulated (or have an affiliate that is regulated) as an investment adviser or broker-dealer, will be required to undertake a massive compliance effort simply to identify the tools and guidance that could be impacted."  MORE >>

The SPARK Institute

Benefits in General

[Guidance Overview]

IRS Extends 2023 Form 5500 Filing Deadline for California Plans

"The California Franchise Tax Board (FTB) has also extended its deadline to conform to the IRS's extended deadline.... The IRS did not announce this latest deadline extension until the due date so many plan administrators may have already filed their Forms 5500. However, for those plan administrators who did not file their Forms 5500 by October 16, 2023, this short extension will come as a welcome relief."  MORE >>

Boutwell Fay LLP

Employee Benefits Jobs

View job as Manager, Retirement Plan Services Recordkeeping
            for 1st Source Bank

Manager, Retirement Plan Services Recordkeeping

1st Source Bank

South Bend IN

View job as Manager, Retirement Plan Services Recordkeeping for 1st Source Bank

View job as VP, Business Development
            for Segal

VP, Business Development


New York NY / Hybrid

View job as VP, Business Development for Segal

Selected New Discussions

401(a)(26) and Frozen Plan + Top Heavy

"Frozen CB plan (frozen early 2023 hard freeze i.e. no new entry+ no accruals to anyone):

  • Top heavy
  • Title I (no PBGC)
  • Underfunded i.e. assets are less than the total account balance
  • Covering 2 owners and a few previously terminated participants.
  • 2 additional non-owner employees, one HCE and one non-HCE categorically excluded

PS Plan:

  • Not top heavy
  • Only PS provisions
  • No contribution for 2023
  • Top heavy benefits are provided under PS plan and only to non-keys (no top heavy provisions under the CB)

Combined plans are top heavy and plans were aggregated in the past for testing. Questions:

  1. I believe I have to pass 401a26 within the CB plan i.e. at least 2 must get meaningful benefit, agree?
  2. If prior benefit structure would work, how would I test it. I have 2 active and 3 inactive participants, all with meaningful benefits prior to freeze. Any thoughts on this?
  3. Assuming I need to provide the meaningful benefits and only to the 2 non-owner participants, I do not have to provide any top heavy under the PS plan as long as the keys do not get any allocation in either CB or PS plans, agree?

What else am I not thinking of/asking about?"

BenefitsLink Message Boards

Press Releases

Pozek Named 2023 Winner of Thomas J. Finnegan III Educator’s Award

ASPPA [American Society of Pension Professionals & Actuaries]

Webcasts and Conferences
(Retirement Plans / Executive Compensation)

The DOL’s New Fiduciary Proposal is at the OMB: What’s Next?


Faegre Drinker

The DOL’s New Fiduciary Proposal is at the OMB: What’s Next?


Faegre Drinker

Automating Payroll in the 2first Century and Cybersecurity

October 26, 2023 in CA

Western Pension & Benefits Council - Orange County Chapter

Last Issue's Most Popular Items

More Lawsuits Say Forfeiture Reallocation Was a Fiduciary Breach

American Retirement Association [ARA]

SECURE 2.0: Navigating the Compliance Landscape

Enterprise Iron

DOL Issues Advisory Opinion on Payment of Plan Investment Management Fees Under Corporate Racial Equity Program

Miller & Chevalier

Unsubscribe  |   Change Email Address

Search Past Issues   |   Privacy Policy

Submit an Article   |   Contact Us   |   Advertise Here

Copyright 2023, 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.

BenefitsLink® Retirement Plans Newsletter, ISSN no. 1536-9587.

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