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Flashpoint Articles

FLASHPOINT: THE INS AND OUTS OF 403(B) DEFERRALS – THE IRS SOLVES THE PROBLEM

The IRS has provided important transition relief for many 403(b) plans struggling with an apparent change in IRS positions on a critical issue: how should 403(b) plans treat part-time employees who sometimes work more than 20 hours a week and sometimes work fewer? Recently issued Notice 2018-95 clarifies that what the IRS is calling “the […]

FLASHPOINT: THE NEW MEP (MEH!) PROPOSED REGULATIONS

The Department of Labor (“DOL”) issued proposed regulations (the “Proposal”) on October 22, 2018, that represent the first major step in changing its restrictions on multiple employer plans (“MEPs”). However, it is just the first step, and does not change the landscape for Open MEPs. The Proposal was issued in response to the President’s August […]

FlashPoint: New EPCRS Procedure: Electronic Submission of VCP and Not A Whole Lot More

On September 28, 2018, the IRS issued Revenue Procedure 2018-52, the latest version of the Employee Plans Compliance Resolution System (“EPCRS”), the IRS’s comprehensive procedures for correcting retirement plan errors. Using this procedure, retirement plan sponsors may fix mistakes in their qualified plans, 403(b) plans, 403(a) retirement annuities, SEPs, and SIMPLEs. Although they are not […]

FLASHPOINT: DOL FIDUCIARY RULES: WHERE THE HECK ARE WE NOW?

  As we discussed in our FlashPoint entitled, “Did the 5th Circuit Kill the Fiduciary Rule?” on March 15, 2018, the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals vacated the Department of Labor’s (DOL) fiduciary regulations and the related prohibited transactions in relation to investment advice.  (For purposes of this FlashPoint, we will call these the “New […]

FLASHPOINT: DID THE 5TH CIRCUIT KILL THE DOL FIDUCIARY RULES?

This update is published by Ferenczy Benefits Law Center to provide information about recent developments to our clients and friends. It is intended to be informational and does not constitute legal advice for any particular situation. It also may be considered to be “attorney advertising” under the rules of certain states.   Ferenczy FlashPoint:  Did […]

SOLUTIONS IN A FLASH: BUDGET ACT CONTAINS RETIREMENT PLAN CHANGES

Note to self: do not turn the light out for the night if Congress just passed a budget act and you haven’t gone looking for benefits provisions. Yes, the new Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018 (the “Budget Act”), passed by Congress on Thursday, February 8, and signed on the morning of February 9 by President […]

FLASHPOINT: STICKING IT TO THE LITTLE MAN: WHY THE NEW IRS VCP FEES ARE BAD FOR SMALL BUSINESS, TPAS, AND RETIREMENT PLANS

  Forgive us if we don’t sing the praises of the Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) for the most recent update to the Voluntary Correction Program (“VCP”) fee schedule.  A number of articles have been published since the release of Revenue Procedure (“Rev. Proc.”) 2018-4, expressing enthusiasm about the reduction of the fees for mega-corporations that […]

FLASHPOINT – IRS ANNOUNCES 2018 COST OF LIVING ADJUSTMENTS

The IRS just released the cost of living adjustments for various retirement plan limitations that will take effect on January 1, 2018.  Many of the limits will be increasing for 2018. The Consumer Price Index, on which these limits are based, went up 2.2% during the prior twelve months.  The key limits that increased (shown […]

FlashPoint – Sign Up for DC-1 Prep Class

Studying For ASPPA’s DC-1 Exam? Want To Kick Off Your Studies for DC-1? Need A Good Survey Course About DC Plans? Need A Good Refresher On DC Plans? NEED CEs?   IT DOESN’T GET ANY BETTER THAN THIS!!! Attend in Person in Atlanta OR Live Stream (Not just a webcast, but a broadcast of speakers […]

FLASHPOINT – WHAT’S GOING ON IN THE WORLD OF RETIREMENT PLANS?

We realize that we have been off the grid somewhat for the past few months, but are glad to be back in publication and here to catch you up on the happenings in the benefits world. Hurricane Relief Attached here is a chart outlining the various relief measures taken by the government for victims of […]

FlashPoint – Surprise! You Are (or Are Not) a Professional (and You Are (or Are Not) Covered by the PBGC!

We worked recently on an interesting matter that has rather far-reaching consequences for some sponsors of defined benefit and cash balance (collectively, DB) plans. Our client, a financial advisor to some retirement plans and mostly individuals, and a sponsor of a DB plan for employees at his firm, was recently audited by the IRS.  During […]

FlashPoint – DOL Delays Fiduciary Rule Changes

As expected, the Department of Labor (DOL) has extended the applicability date of the new fiduciary/conflict of interest regulation from April 10 to June 9.  The new rule also extends the applicability of the Best Interest Contract Exemption (BICE) interim applicability. What does this mean?  First of all, for those of you who were struggling […]

FlashPoint – What’s Been Happening?  

We hope everyone is enjoying their new year, and that there is relatively mild weather where you live.  We had our annual snowstorm scare here in Atlanta two weeks ago, with warnings from the press about everything from getting off the roads early to making sure you have baby food in your cabinets.  It snowed […]

FlashPoint – The New Fiduciary Regs: A Practical Review – Part III

This is the third and final part to our “Practical Review” of the new fiduciary rules issued by the Department of Labor (D OL). This installment will look at how the rules have been accepted by the benefits com m unity and what we hear or think practitioners are doing to prepare for compliance. (Of […]

FlashPoint – New IRS Procedure for Plan Documents

The IRS issued Revenue Procedure 2016-37 (the “Procedure”) at the end of June, which significantly affects individually designed plans (“IDPs”) and has some ramifications for pre approved documents, such as prototypes and volume submitter documents.

FlashPoint – The New Fiduciary Regs: A Practical Review – Part II

Thank you for your patience in awaiting this second part to our review of the new Fiduciary rules issued by the Department of Labor. This installment will look at the potential for self-dealing if you are an advice fiduciary, and how the Best Interest Contract Exemption (BICE) can help. As with Part I, our goal […]

FlashPoint – Grabbing Victory Out of the Jaws of Defeat Late Plan Restatements

Understanding that there may be some situations in which the looming April 30 restatement deadline cannot be met by some adopters of defined contribution pre-approved plan documents, the IRS got the jump on providing practitioners with assistance for resolving these nonamender problems. Nonamenders: Big Trouble! A failure to restate the plan on a timely basis […]

FlashPoint – The New Fiduciary Regs: A Practical Review – Part I

Okay, here is the FBLC take on the new DOL fiduciary regulations. As in the past with prior proposals, we have broken our response into different parts. Today’s information will look to give just some broad rules and structure of the Regulation, itself, which defines what makes someone an advice fiduciary and what that means. […]