Topic Archive: Plan Compliance

Spouse or Not a Spouse? That is the Question...of the Week

DWC | 06/4/19

Facts

Our company has sponsored a 401(k) plan for a while and although it’s not new to us that certain situations - from beneficiary designations to annual nondiscrimination testing - might require us to provide information about spousal relationships, we are seeing that different types of relationships, and statuses, are becoming more commonplace.

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What Does Safe Harbor Mean, Exactly?

DWC | 05/28/19

Facts

When we set up our new 401(k) plan last year, we decided not to add a safe harbor provision because we were not in a position to commit to the required contribution.  Then we heard our TPA say something about our deferral deposits fitting within the safe harbor deadline.  Now I’m just confused.

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Which Compensation Do You Use When Your Company Fiscal Year is Different Than Your Plan Year?

DWC | 05/21/19

Facts

When we set up our 401(k) plan, our partnership operated on a fiscal year that ran from July 1st to June 30th.  We set the 401(k) plan year to line up with our company’s fiscal year.  We recently changed our company’s fiscal year to follow the calendar year and didn’t think to notify our TPA to discuss the impact to the Plan.  Now, they are asking for annual census information (including compensation) in order to prepare the profit sharing allocation and complete the required testing.

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Top Heavy vs. ADP: What's the Difference?

DWC | 05/7/19

Facts

As a plan sponsor, I do my best to review the annual compliance reports my TPA sends to me, but to be honest, it might as well be written in a foreign language.  For example, several of our participants were recently required to receive corrective refunds due to contributing too much for 2018.  I thought it was because our plan was top heavy last year, but then my TPA mentioned something called an ADP test.

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Who are Leased Employees & Are They Eligible for my 401(k) Plan?

DWC | 04/16/19

Facts

I own a small manufacturing company that specializes in office supplies, and I sponsor a 401(k) plan for my employees. One of my former employees, Tim Halpert, worked full-time with me for the past several years but recently left to work for a staffing agency called Prestige Worldwide.  Tim was a great employee for many years, and Prestige has offered me the opportunity to have him continue to provide services for me through the staffing agency. Prestige Worldwide also offered the services of another employee, Toby Blenderson, who would work on a part-time basis for about six months.

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What is the PBGC & Does it Cover our Cash Balance Plan?

DWC | 04/9/19

Facts

Our company is thinking of setting up a cash balance plan.  In our research about what that entails, we keep running into information about the PBGC and paying premiums.

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What is the Form 8955-SSA and What Does It Do?

DWC | 04/2/19

Facts

Our company has been very fortunate to have low turnover over the years.  Those that have left either were not eligible for our 401(k) plan, or they had very small balances and had their accounts forced out when they terminated.  We recently did have one longer-term employee leave us.  She was an active participant in our plan and has a sizeable balance that is well above our plan’s mandatory distribution threshold.  Our TPA said that we now have to file some new form – an 8955-SSA, I think – that has something to do with this former employee.

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How (and for How Long) Can I Extend the Deadline to File our Form 5500?

DWC | 03/26/19

Facts

We’ve had our retirement plan for a couple of years now and feel that we are finally getting the hang of the various deadlines for our plan.  There is just one deadline that I always have trouble remembering: the extended deadline for filing our Form 5500 with the DOL.  I’ve heard that if we extend our corporate taxes, it is the due date of our tax return.  I’ve also read that we can file an extension of the Form 5500 by filing a Form 5558 which will extend the filing deadline to two and a half months after the original filing deadline.  Obviously, these are two separate dates.  I just want to make sure that I am doing everything timely.

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What Common Compliance Issues Should We Be Watching For?

DWC | 03/19/19

Facts

Our company sponsors a 401(k) plan, and we want to make sure we do everything correctly.  We have a great staff and have put processes in place to help ensure we operate the plan in a compliant manner.  With all the moving parts, however, there is still a concern that we might miss something.

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Pension Pontifications | Q1 2019

DWC | 03/14/19

All of us here at DWC thrive on the really geeky stuff, and some of the best discussions start with our pontifications about how different topics impact our clients and our industry.  We decided to bring the best of those conversations to you, still with a touch of geekiness but also distilled into easily digested, bite-sized pieces.

This is our busiest time of the year as we prepare our Annual ERISA Compliance Reviews for calendar year plans.  It is a great time to connect with our clients and their investment advisors to discuss the past year and look forward to what lies ahead. - As originally published in our Q1 2019 newsletter. Didn't get it? Sign up here.

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The views expressed in this blog are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of any other person or organization. All content is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended to be tax or legal advice.