Retirement In Your 60’s: How Much Should You Have In Your 401k Plan?

Retirement age might seem far away from you for now, but it doesn’t mean that it’ll never come. Preparing for your future is never too early or too late. Everything that you’ll be saving up from your salary right now will pay off in the future. But it can be very difficult to save up most of the time especially if you’re in your 20’s and you’re still enjoying your life. There are still things that you want to buy and places that you want to go to. All of these things might make you lose focus and end up with no savings at all.

So what should you do to have enough savings in the future? 401(k) plans are now being offered by employers to their employees. You might have heard about them before in your office but had no idea what it is. You may already have one. This article will help you understand how it can help you with your lifetime savings.

The 401(k) Plan

The 401(k) is basically a retirement plan that is sponsored by an employer. It helps employees manage their savings better and their future finances by taking a part of their salary and investing it in their savings. It is just like pension funds but more flexible. This is because you can control the money that you want to invest. There are plans that you can invest in bonds, stocks, and money market investments.

How Much Will You Receive For Retirement?

It’s easy to say how you’ll be saving up for your future and how you plan to become a millionaire by the age of 50. But it is not easy to do it. And one of the reasons why is because you are not sure of how much you should be saving up. Lack of proper planning for your retirement and for your personal finances make you unfocused on your goals.

If you don’t have a clear plan, you won’t reach your target savings. And this is how a 401(k) plan becomes very useful for you. The amount that you want to save is automatically removed from your salary, therefore preventing you from spending it on things that you don’t need like that shoes that you saw in the mall last week or that bag that you have been eyeing for months now.

Let’s go back to the question. How much are you going to receive for your retirement if you invest in a 401(k) plan? While it is impossible to say a specific amount because the economy is always changing, experts were still able to estimate how much money you are likely to have in your plan once you retire in your 60’s.

According to them, assuming that you have a $1,000 balance in your plan and start your career at the age of 22, with a salary of $40,00 an annual increase of 3%, a contribution rate of 10%, and returns of 8% annually, your balance can amount to $3.1 by the age of 66. This money is already more than enough for you and your family when you retire.

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What Are The Benefits Of This Retirement Plan?

It is very motivating to know the potential amount of money that you can get through a 401(k) plan. And to make you even more motivated to save up, here are some benefits that come with this retirement plan.

• The amount of money that you contribute to your 401(k) is exempted from tax. This means that your taxable income is lowered. In addition to this, the dividend, as well as your capital gains that are earned through your 401(k), are also not subject to taxes until you withdraw it from your retirement plan.

• Some retirement accounts like the IRAs limit people from contributing once they turn 70 ½ which is unlike 401(k) plans that will allow you to contribute as long as you want while you are still working.

The 401(k) plan is undoubtedly a good way of making your savings earned. The amount of money that you can save up using this plan is also really good. However, the bottom line for every savings plan is that you are always in control of your money. You can either save a lot or end up having none at all. If you are not mindful of your expenses, you won’t succeed even if you have a 401(k) plan.

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The Due Date For Your 401K Form 5500 Is Now!

Form 5500 401k is due by the end of July, 2017! Do you help preparing or filing?

The IRS Form 5500 for the defined-benefit plans are always due seven months once the plan year has ended. For the Calendar Year Plan years, the date is 31 July which follows the plan-year. There are 2 extensions types that can apply that allow an IRS Form 5500 to be filed at a later date this includes:

When a plan sponsor has requested for an extension in regards to their corporate taxes, that will move the IRS Form 5500 due date from the 31 July to the 15 September

• When the plan sponsor has filed a Form 5558 that extends the actual filing date that will move the deadline for filing to the 15 October. The Form 5558 will have to be filed before the 31 July in order to qualify for this extension

The plan administrators are able to request extensions in regards to your due date for filing by:

• By filing the Form 5558 for an Application for Extension of Time in order to File Certain Employee Plan Returns. This needs to be sent to the Internal Revenue Service before or on the standard due date for filing. You will need to retain a copy of this extension with your permanent records of the plan. You are able to download this form directly from the Internal Revenue Service website.

How To File Your Form 5500

You will need to file a completed Form 5500 along with any related schedules to the Department of labor which will be specified in the Form 5500 instructions found under “Electronic Filing Requirement.” You can choose to use either an EFAST2-approved Vendor’s Filing System or the EFAST2’s Web-Based Filing System. For detailed information associated with electronic filing you can visit www.efast.dol.gov.

BC2 offers preparation services of the Form 5500 along with any related SAR and filing options. If you happen to be interested in these services it is advisable to make contact with us today! You can call from Monday to Friday on (515)244-2424 in order to speak to one of our consultants.

Rolling Dates

Most of the dates associated with the due date on the retirement plans will depend on the Plan Year. Most of the plans are typically administered on the calendar year. However, a large portion is actually administered according to the fiscal year. In many cases when the company that sponsors these plans runs on the fiscal year, the plan will typically run on this same fiscal-year. Here is a list of rolling-due dates:

• Compliance Corrections- 2 and ½ months after the plan year has ended

• Contributions For Deduction Purposes- 2 and ½ months for the corporations and 3 and ½ month for the others

• Mandatory Contributions- 8 and ½ months once the plan year has ended


Do you need help with IRS Form 5500 preparation and filing. Call us today at (515)244-2424

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What Our ERISA Compliance Business Will Do For Your Company

Bc2 specialize in ERISA compliance and Form 5500 preparation.

Many accounting and law firms claim to be able to support your company in its efforts to be compliant. And, then the surprise letter arrives in the mail citing non-compliance and assessing thousands of dollars in fines for every employee affected by such transgressions.

Our ERISA compliance business will save you from extremely costly business-breaking surprises. We not only build a relationship with your company, but we provide a sturdy knowledge base that demonstrates expertise in all things ERISA compliance.

We even have proven client experience to show that we put you in the position to truly be compliant. This is one time to be ahead of the eight ball. No one wants to raise eyebrows at the Federal level. It is just another hassle and would cost a lot in pulling paperwork out of storage, off of old drives, while detracting resources from your business’s bread and butter: daily operations.

It is best to have a process in place that ensures all paperwork to be in compliance is completed and stored for easy access by HR. Our ERISA compliance business will set up such a process with you to ensure that it works within the scope of how your business already functions.

Congratulations if you own a business that is successful enough to hire on employees. Now, get ready to invest in them, according to the Federal laws and regulations, and local state laws as well. The Federal government’s ERISA is the topic here.

What Is ERISA?
The Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 is also known as ERISA. It is actually a Federal law that on what types of information needs to be collected and filed away for employees who are going to receive benefits. It sets the bar for the minimum voluntarily pension, for instance, as well as for health plans for use within the private sector. In essence, ERISA provides protection for the individual employees who are parked in such plans.

Why Is ERISA Important?
While it is important to follow Federal laws to avoid costly fines, there are more compelling reasons to follow ERISA. For one, it is out of respect for the very people who contribute to your company, committing their time and lives to your success, essentially.

What Our ERISA Compliance Business Will Do For You
ERISA puts the obligation for administrative management of employee benefit plan paperwork on the employer who is providing such benefits. It includes plans such as retirement, health insurance, welfare and other benefits management. In other words, yes, ERISA makes requirements on employers about the way the benefits are managed.

As a compliance service provider, we ensure your company’s HR understand the legal requirements. This allows the HR team to adhere to ERISA properly. In addition, we recommend having HR management oversight to ensure that ERISA requirements are met.

What Does ERISA Cover?
As it turns out ERISA encompasses many different programs or welfare plans. In this case welfare plans refer to any funds, plans, or programs that give employees’s access to disability, death, and accident benefits, along with surgical, medical, surgical, and hospital access.

What many people forget is that unemployment insurance benefits are actually provided through contributions made by employers and administered through accurate payroll assignments by the employer on behalf of its individual employees. ERISA is very much connected to unemployment through new hire forms and taxation of the employer.

Other surprising areas touch by ERISA even include scholarships, days off, training plans, legal services, daycare, severance, and of course retirement programs.

ERISA Components
Reporting by administrators to the DOL and IRS simply means describing in summary how the employer’s coverage works.

ERISA Forms And Disclosure
Filing forms is a big part of the deal with ERISA. It requires annual reporting to the IRS on Form 5500/5500-SF. DOL welfare plan forms are required if there are more than 100 participants with full benefits. Other forms required by the IRS for retirement plans are not required to be filed at the same time as welfare plan forms.

Companies are under a lot of pressure to focus on their bottom line and in growing revenue. Turn to professionals like us to ensure ERISA compliance.


 

5 Form 5500 Changes In 2020

The Form 5500 is usually updated periodically to ensure that it stays current with the market and legal requirements.

The United States Department of Labor published a proposed rule on July 21, 2016 that seeks to improve and modernize Form 5500. Form 5500 is an annual report/return that employee benefit plans with over 100 lives covered are required to file. The changes are not likely to go into effect until the year 2020.

However, the proposed new developments are significant due to their focus on group health plans. The proposed rules are geared towards the elimination of current filing exemption for small group health plans and require group health plans to complete a new, detailed schedule.

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Here are 5 proposed Form 5500 Changes In 2020

1.     Companies Must Ensure the Transparency of Information Filed to the Department of Labor

The information should include where the money is invested and what fees it attracts including whether they are reasonable. It is believed that it will also offer further insight into the number of participants enrolled, dependents, employees, COBRA, and COBRA dependents and information pertaining to rebate handling, TPA payments for Self-insured and Stop Loss benefits, as well as past due payments.

2.     Forms Should Offer More Information Pertaining to Group Health Plans

The proposal will require new forms and will also require employers that have 2 lives covered to file Form 5500s, which could result in close to 2 million additional plans to file, which is a 23 times jump. The only exceptions to the rule are the multiple employer welfare plans and arrangements holding their assets in trust. Such types of plans already have to file irrespective of the enrolled count.

3.     The new Schedule J Has over 30 questions That Have to be Answered

Schedule J covers fees, rebates, self-insured benefits, premiums, compliance questions, and much more. While most of the questions are Yes/No type questions, some of them dig deep when it comes to matters related to compliance.

4.     Data Has to be “mine-able” to Allow For Machine Readability

This proposal is quite significant for the Department of Labor that has stressed in a current report to Congress that there are some major areas where it lacks complete information such as plans with self-insured medical benefits and plans that have less than 100 lives covered.

5.     The Updating of the Information of Service Provider Fees

Proposed Schedule C actually lowers the reporting threshold down to $1,000 or more from $5,000 or more for the vendors that provide service to plans holding their assets in trust.

The proposed changes mean that advisers will need to be on top of the extra information that employer, TPA, and carrier provide. It will be a game changer in several different ways for the 5500.

What Do The Changes Mean?

The proposed Form 5500 Changes in 2020 mean that there will be extra work for all the parties involved including brokers, employers, and companies that are responsible for the preparation and form-5500 changesproduction of the forms. While the changes will be most likely implemented in year 2020, now is the time for stakeholders and advisers to start preparations.

It is always advisable to be completely prepared when it comes to the proposed compliance changes and compliance questions. One area in Schedule J, asks for more responses and details if a firm has the right documentation in place for its plan, which is something the Department of Labor has been pushing.

The Department of Labor has stated that the changes will be communicated through its website and it will be up to brokers to ensure that they educate themselves on the proposed changes and companies to decide on the plans to produce webinars, white papers, and education pieces for.

Final Thoughts

The proposed Form 5500 Changes in 2020 are quite significant. It is therefore important for employers to monitor the proposed changes and determine how they are likely to affect them once they are finalized. Employers that have small group health plans that have been previously exempted from filing Form 5500 should ensure that they get in touch with the service providers to evaluate their options when it comes to filing Form 5500.

Our Compliance Consulting Firm Can Help You Get Your Business Organized

There are quite a few reasons why business owners of all types reach out to consultants like www.bc2co.com. Many aspects of running a business require additional outsourced help without necessarily adding people to the payroll. It certainly is beneficial when you have consultants on your side to act quickly, help you problem solve, figure out solutions and find avenues for growth. Compliance is also key, and our compliance consulting firm is ready to serve you.

What is compliance all about? Well, if you are reading this post you probably have some idea but let’s pretend you don’t because there are many compliance issues that can arise, but let’s first talk about taxes. How do you feel about your taxes? Business owners can feel great about keeping the books and day to day operations, but when it comes to tax time, each new year can be a major headache. Not to mention, it’s not just the end of the fiscal year when business owners have to concern themselves with taxes. After all, you are making quarterly tax payments, filing receipts and keeping up with taxes throughout the year, aren’t you?

Do you need any documents prepared? Maybe you have been finding yourself with ongoing tax questions, and our compliance consulting firm could make things easier on you. It would be easier on everyone if taxes weren’t so difficult, right? There are people talking about wanting to change the tax laws, but we will see. Until then, we are here to serve you anytime you need consulting on any matters related to compliance issues.

What do you know about ERISA compliance? This has everything to do with employee benefits. We can even help you provide the best solutions of course. We will evaluate your business based on compliance laws and regulations and will help you determine how you need to move forward. Of course we aren’t in the business of compliance to out you as the business owner through the ringer. We want to help you succeed, and we are here to show you our undivided attention and dedication to finding the best and most affordable solutions for your business.

It matters who the compliance firms are networked with when it comes to helping you get things done. With the right connections, and we do have them, we can help you with all kinds of situations. What is your biggest concern right now? Where would you like us to get started? The introduction to our services began with tax compliance because that is an area where many business owners feel they need help.

Properly orientating, training and providing benefits to employees is also key as mentioned. Is your facility meeting safety standards? You don’t have to be told that this is huge. If there is anything wrong, it needs to be fixed. Safety standards must be revisited all the time to be sure your business is handling everything appropriately. What other kinds of compliance issues can arise? Why else would you need the services of our compliance consulting firm?

You can be sure that you are even going to find out more about what we can do for you when you call us. We will handle all of your questions. If there is something we can’t do, we can tell you why and still help you try and figure out what to do. We want to see you succeed as a business owner and not have to worry about compliance issues anymore. You can continuously consult with us as you see fit or check in with us again when you need our services in the future.

Understanding compliance can even be a little difficult if you are new to the game. That is even more of a reason to reach out to us so that we can go over all the concerns you have. Maybe a recent event has you questioning whether or not you need consultants to run a compliance check on your business. Don’t leave anything undone, and let us tell you if there are changes that need to be made. Perhaps you are told changes are necessary, but you don’t know what to do next. We can help you figure that out, too. For everything concerning compliance, we can assess what is going on and what is needed.

We are here to serve and help your business succeed with benefits compliance needs.

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Form 5500: Its Changes and Implications

Filing the Form 5500 is a regulatory requirement imposed by the government among benefit plan sponsors, who are mandated to do so.

It is through this form that the government monitors benefit plans and pension operations and investments, since it is in their interest to protect the welfare of the American people.

As a concerted effort among Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC), the Department of Treasury’s IRS, and the Department of Labor (DOL), the rule on filing the Form 5500 had been enforced. Since then, companies with welfare plan and 401(k) retirement plan must comply with this annually.

But the current form does not seem to be informative enough. This year, a proposal has been made to improve the Form 5500 reporting. This is to assist in the update of the current plan st

Since the announcement of the proposed changes, the government opened its communication lines and accepted comments from plan sponsors. Information on Form 5500 revisions is already being disseminated by government agencies for a successful implementation of the new form in 2019.

What are the changes to expect?

The proposal is bound to make valuable changes in the governance of benefit plans, as well as in the lives of individuals and employers. It is expected to benefit compliance with certain laws, provide a more comprehensive financial report, and cover a broader span of companies mandated to comply with Form 5500 reporting.

One of the salient features of the proposal is the addition of Schedule J. This requires employers to provide more detailed information on their benefit health plan packages and ensure compliance with the laws focused on protecting the rights and access of individuals to healthcare and welfare benefits. Those laws are the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA), Affordable Care Act, and Michelle’s Law, among others.

Another key feature of the new form is the addition of companies with welfare plans, which cover less than 100 employees, required to comply with the reporting. This aims for a wider coverage and greater transparency in the framework of group benefit plans among all plan sponsors.

What do the changes imply?

This is most advantageous for the companies that sponsor the benefit plans and the government. Their access to a large database of consumer information will help them improve the policies and plans that only aim to protect its beneficiaries.

Another advantage is for the individuals whose rights and interests are the highlight of the proposed changes. There will be extensive inquiries on the companies’ compliance with state rules on healthcare and retirement. Therefore, employers will be encouraged to offer benefit plans that are both compliant and competitive.

The disadvantages, on the other hand, are overwhelming. First, the cost of filing the Form 5500 is expected to increase approximately 5,500% more (in aggregate). This is because those companies that were previously exempted from filing will bring the numbers expected to comply from only a few thousands to 2 million.

Second, the processing, although electronic, will take more time. There will be more details required from plan sponsors such as questions on their full compliance with certain state laws and disclosure requirements.

The most apparent implication is that the change presents the government’s continued commitment to support the welfare and healthcare of its people. This is promising for most Americans that will need greater welfare benefits, health protection, and better healthcare services in the future.

The higher standards of compliance that will be enforced on more companies raise the standards of providing benefit plans in the U.S. as well. Although the reporting might pose some inefficiencies or inconveniences from the employers’ end, the consequence of non compliance is more costly. Failure to file Form 5500 on time is a fine of $2,063 daily. All these are great incentives that benefit compliance.

The healthcare reform that gave birth into improving the form 5500 aims only to reinforce the rights and give importance to health and welfare of individuals. While the changes are still in its early stages, it’s worth it to know about what the changes are and what they imply. Before the change reach its full shape, individuals and employers alike should take an active role in forming the reporting standards that will ultimately change America’s health care system.

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Comparing Forms 10-K and 5500: How Do They Differ?

Comparing Forms 10-K and 5500: How Do They Differ?

The benefit plans provided by companies and firms are regulated by the government. The government does this by assigning some of its agencies to specifically monitor pension fund performance. For public pensions, two forms are studied by the government: form 10-K and form 5500. Let us compare these two data sources and find out what distinguishes one from the other.

US benefit consulting groupThe element that these two forms have in common is that both are required by the government to be submitted annually for the purpose of assessing the performance of a company when it comes to providing employee benefits and keeping the rights of their employees protected.

Form 10-K is a report made annually to the US Securities and Exchange Commission or SEC. This report must be filed 90 days after the fiscal year ends. The nature of the report will depend on how big the company is and how long the company has been public. This form details the financial situation of a company. It also includes information about the business’s current condition. The form includes financial statements that have gone through auditing by a third party accounting firm. This form is not similar to the report given to shareholders in the form of a booklet whenever they meet to choose new directors.

The US Securities and Exchange Commission requires that disclosure sections need to be included in the form 10-K. Usually, this form can include some, if not all, the following elements:

  • Financial data. A financial summary detailing data over the past five years must be included in the form. This provides an overview of the financial performance of the firm. Pension obligations is not necessarily included in this part.
  • Results of Operations and Analysis of Financial Condition. This section can include any of the following:
    • Accounting for pensions
    • Net pension liabilities
    • Pension plan cash contributions
    • Unfunded pension obligations

If you need more information regarding pension obligations, the footnotes contained in Form 10-K may provide the information you need. When it comes to welfare plans and pension, the following information may be available in the form:

  • Benefit obligations
  • Pension funding requirements
  • Pension plan asset return rates
  • Return of assets
  • Trends in health care cost

On the other hand, form 5500 is a report also made annually to the Department of Labor, the IRS, and the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation.

After all of the required information has been attached to the form, the total you will submit can amount to tens of pages’ worth of documents. The form 5500 includes the following:

  • Financial information
  • Insurance information
  • Participating plan information
  • Retirement plan information
  • Service provider information
  • Single employer defined benefit plan information

The filing of this form can easily be started by checking of the website of the Department of Labor.

The difference between these two is that Form 10-K provides projections for the future, whereas form 5500 only focuses on the present. Therefore, the information provided in 10-K is significantly bigger, from the reports on pension obligation to the number of requirements to be submitted.

Form 5500 provides more information since it includes present-dated information that is not really shown in form 10-K, such as the present liability amount.

If you are wondering how to reconcile the information in these two forms, the answer is you don’t. The information provided by these two forms naturally differ because they do not serve the same function, and they do not focus at the same time frame. The government requires firms to submit different forms that are designed to provide different points of view to those who are going to be checking them, so thinking that these two forms should be the same would be wrong.

It is important to understand what each of these two forms do and which agencies look at the information. These forms are checked in order to ensure quality in benefit planning and in upholding employee rights.


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Back To the Basics: Form 5500

Form 5500: The Basics

One of the most important government forms you need to complete to secure your retirement plan is form 5500. If you work for a company that offers either a retirement plan or a 401 (k) plan, you should be annually completing the form since the plan began to be implemented. Every year, the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation, the Department of labor, and the IRS check if your company is still able to protect you, and whether your plan continues to be compliant with the set regulations.

The form is always heavily scrutinized by many individuals and government offices, so knowing what it does, what it contains, and when to file it is of extreme importance.

What is Form 5500?

If you work for a firm that offers a tax qualified retirement plan such as the 401(k) or something similar, during the time you worked for that firm, you should have been filing form 5500 every year since your business started adopting the plan.

The form looks almost the same as other forms issued by the IRS; the only difference being this form is not just held by the IRS, but also by other government bodies such as the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation and the Department of labor. Each of these agencies have their own set goals when they look at your form, but ultimately, what they are trying to ensure is that your plan is being operated for your benefit and that it is being correctly processed every year.

  • The IRS uses the information on your form to determine your tax compliance. The IRS is the agency responsible for the regulations that allow tax benefits and retirement plans to be implemented to both workers and employers.
  • The Department of labor uses the information on your form to ensure that the plan your company is using is not breaking any rules. It is also used to make sure that the company keeps your rights protected and secure. The DOL monitors how the company operates the plan.
  • The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation monitors what is written on your form to determine whether the firm you work for is compliant in providing you with the benefits you ought to receive, regardless if the firm has moved on to using a new plan.

In summary, the 5500 form is used not only for law enforcement, but also for analysis. The government checks how many businesses offer retirement plans, whether workers are recipients of any type of benefit, how many large and small plans are available to people at a given time, and what new regulations may be enforced in order to improve the present situation.

What are “small” and “large” plans?

Plans that are assessed in your form are categorized as being either “large” or “small”.

If the plan had less than one hundred members on its first day of implementation, the plan is considered to be a “small” plan. Those that exceed that number are called “large” plans. It is those firms that have large plans that need to file the 5500 every year, while firms with small plans only have to complete a simpler form called the form 5500-SF.

A plan can continue to be considered small if the number of participants does not exceed 120 at the start of the new plan year. Every participant regardless of whether they are active or not are considered in the head count.

When should it be filed?

The form 5500 should be filed after the end of the plan year, on the last day of the seventh month. If you need more time, you need to file form 5558, which can extend the deadline for another two and a half months.

The form is never the same every year, and there are always changes introduced in order to ensure that it matches the needs of firms and workers today. Every year, the IRS imposes new changes to the form, and the IRS simply sends instructions to firms on what has been updated on the form.


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An Understanding of Form 5500 Company Search- A Synopsis

The basics of Form 5500 company search and its place in your business is sometimes overlooked.

The Department of Labor, the Pension Benefit and Guaranty Corporation and Internal Revenue service in cooperation developed Form 5500 Series. This form could be used by the Employee Benefit Plans to satisfy the yearly reporting necessity under ERISA’s Title I and IV and under the Internal Revenue Code. This form is a significant compliance, disclosure and research tool for the Department of the Labor, source of information as well as a disclosure file for beneficiaries and plan participants and information utilized by other Federal Agencies.


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What is Form 5500 Series?

The form 5500 series is an overall reporting and disclosure system of Employee Retirement and Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) that is designed to guarantee that employees benefits are managed and operated in accordance with particular prescribed standards and the beneficiaries, participants and regulators are provided or have free access to right information in order to protect the benefits and rights of beneficiaries and participants under employee benefits plan.

Purpose of Form 5500

The main purpose of Form 5500 is the yearly reporting for particular welfare and pension benefit plans and it contains all information about an investment, operations, and financial condition’s plan. This form is co-sponsored by IRS, DOL and Pension Benefits Guarantee Corporation.

What about PBGC or IRS?

As we’ve mentioned above that the Form 5500 was made by PBGC, IRS and DOL together. The form filed with the DOL will accomplish the requirements of IRS to file a yearly information return. All the plans under PBGC defined benefit plans and can have extra filling needs with the PBGC.

Who can fill Form 5500 series?

All companies with 401 (k) plan or pension plan must file the annual report with the Internet Revenue Service, Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation, and the Department of Labor. Companies that have more than 100 employees and also offer health plans must file Form 5500 welfare schedule.

In numerous cases, there are many things to do and little time to execute that. Accomplishing all your needs related to form 5500 company search in a particular area. As the rule and regulations keep on changing, completing the important documentation in a precise way and on time has become quite difficult to manage. For many companies, taking the whole process off and knowing it will be managed and handled properly is a big relief. It enables companies to use existing internal resources for other important projects.

What is in Form 550 Company Search?

The form 5500 has a main form with different attachments and schedules. Normally, this form must represent the operations and the characteristics of the plan. The major part of the Form 5500 consists of two long pages and information requests of the plan such as date, name, plan administrator information, plan sponsor information, and a breakout of participants involved at the actual end of the financial year.

Review of Quality Assurance

Reviewing Form 5500 filings for completion and accuracy is not as easy as it seems. Perhaps, small details make a huge difference. After filling the forms, these are reviewed to make sure that it reflects the welfare plan, funding arrangements and offering of the sponsor appropriately. The content of the forms will also be reviewed to verify if the filing is completed with DOL guidelines and instructions.

Welfare Plan Form 5500 Preparation

In form 5500 preparation, you can’t fill the form with guesswork. The preparing process of form 5500 filing starts by identifying for the actual plan sponsor for all sort of important and crucial information related to the benefit of the plan as well as of funding arrangements of what data may be needed from other parties. The second step is to complete the filling with all needed schedules and has the review of the client along with approval of hard copy. There is a simple process of preparing electronic returns facilitating with submitting forms and electronic signature and submitting forms by using a right and approved software. After the approval of the form, it will be submitted to the DOL for processing. If in case, the filling needed extra action or DOL does not approve the request, the company carried out the important research and resolves the matter as soon as possible.

It is important for companies to file electronically within seven months from the actual end of the plan year. You can use Form 5500 version that reflects the starting date of the particular plan.


Contact Benefits Compliance Consulting Inc. if you have any questions or need assistance with Form 5500 company search or preparation.

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Form 5500 Series for 2016 Plan Year Released by DOL

Benefits Compliance Consultannts Inc. was built up and is overseen by an informed and hard-working compliance expert Iris Thill. In the course of recent years, it has turned out to be progressively clear that there is a developing requirement for a gathering of committed tax experts to help businesses with benefits consulting and compliance issues.

Form 5500 Series for 2016 Plan Year Released by DOL

The DOL has officially published Form 5500 for its 2016 Plan Year. The released Form 5500 series includes Form 5500-SF, Instructions, and Schedules; and these advance information copies can so far not be filed, except in rare circumstances. Nonetheless, electronic filing of Form 5500 is still mandatory. Even though few changes have been introduced in the Schedules; Form 5500, including its main body, remains unchanged. Besides, the Instructions, along with separate IRS Guidance, calls for the skipping of IRS Compliance Questions, and also allows filers to omit the requested preparer information. Even so, the Instructions note that the maximum penalty associated with Form 5500 failures have been increased to $2,063 per day from the previous penalty of $1,100 per day. There are also changes made to matters relating to 401(k) plan and welfare filings. These changes have been summarized below:

1. Schedule A focuses entirely on insurance information. In line with this, it has excluded information pertaining to both Part III (which deals with information pertaining to Welfare Benefit Contract) and Part IV (which governs Provision of Information). Even so, Schedule A has still managed to cover the insurance facets which are related to Part III and Part IV. According to EBIA, this may have been brought about by oversight issues, and it is more likely than not to be remedied. EBIA also noted that it is still possible to know if these sections have also been omitted in EFAST2, which is the Schedule A version that is filed electronically.

2. Schedules H and I: These are related schedules. Schedule H pertains to Financial Information, while Schedule I pertains to Financial Information-Small Plan. In both Schedules, questions 4o and 4p have been removed. Questions 4o focused on taxable income derived from sources unrelated to business, and question 4p dealt with in-service distributions for each plan year. Question 4o has been substituted with a clearly defined question that focuses on the benefit plan. Even so, both schedules have instructed filers to skip lines that request trust information.

3. Schedule R, which deals with Retirement Plan Information, has instructed filers to skip IRS Compliance Questions that appear in Part VII. Likewise, these questions have also been altered following the removal of lines covering plan amendments, ADP/ACP testing, and tax law changes. According to EBIA, these deletions reflect changes that are to be made in determination letter program.

According to a commentary provided by EBIA, DOL has decided to minimize the number of changes, as it prepares to introduce significant (key) changes and modifications to ERISA Form 5500. These major changes are expected to take effect in 2019 Plan Year, and filers are expected to understand and comply with them. Meanwhile, filers are now expected to file complete Form 5500s in time, and also ensure that the information contained therein is accurate and up-to-date. This is one of the reason for increasing the maximum penalty. It is also expected that when significant changes have been made, the potential maximum penalties are likely to be increased so as to achieve compliance. More information about these matters can be obtained from previous posts published by EBIA, especially those related to ERISA compliance, 401(k) plans, Cafeteria plans, and self-insured health plans.

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