Important Deadlines for Year-End Benefit Plan

If you want to be careful about the compliance dates for health and retirement plan then this write-up is for you. The time to plan for several employees benefits plans also ends with the end of a calendar year. The employers have to work a lot in the following months while complying between annual deadlines and the inclusion of latest regulations and laws. Brief benefit plan description for some of the effective dates and deadlines is provided here under for your help in this regard.

Don’t get caught? Read more on benefit plan penalties.

Deadlines for Retirement Plan

30th September, 2016

Date of provision of SAR or Summary Annual Report to the contributors and beneficiaries by the administrator of the plan, related to previous year of planning.

Between 3rd October 2016 and 1st December 2016

Date of provision safe harbor notices to the participants and beneficiaries by Plan Administrators, as applicable, for the planning year 2017, if the plan uses safe harbor ACP/ADP testing. These notices may include:

Notice of arrangement of eligible automatic contribution

Notice of arrangement of qualified automatic contribution

Notice of alternative of qualified default investment

Notice of arrangement of automatic contribution

17th October, 2016

Date of filing the 2015 Form 5500 for your calendar year plan, if you have filed an extension on or before 31st July, 2016.

14th November, 2016

Date of provision of benefit statements for the 4th quarter to the participants in their directed plan and the disclosure of the due quarterly fee, under the rule, should also be done in that statement.

31st December, 2016

Among many deadlines at the end of year, the two most important include:

Deadline for any discretionary amendments generally applied during the year of plan

Deadline for required Minimum Distributions due to participants

January 2017

You must provide the census data of testing without any discrimination to the TPA or Third Party Administrator in this first month of the year.

Deadlines for welfare and health plan

30th September, 2016

The participants and beneficiaries must get the SAR from the administrator of the plan for the previous year

12th October, 2016

Date of conducting the first yearly solicitation of the workers, if you are ALE and missed Taxpayer Identification Numbers on the 2015 ACA ALE reporting due to non-provision of the SSNs.

15th October, 2016

Date of provision of notice of Medicare Creditable Coverage to the eligible individuals for Medicare, receiving coverage

17th October, 2016

Date of filing the 2015 Form 5500 if your plan of retirement is on a calendar year and an extension request was filed by 31st July, 2016.

1st November, 2016

Open enrollment for Exchange/Marketplace starts. The start and ending dates of open enrollments should be fixed and enrollment material like the synopsis of Benefits and Coverage should be prepared and distributed by the administrator of the plan by this date.

15th November, 2016

Date of submission of the form for Transitional Reinsurance Program and selection of payment schedule. Date of payment of second installment if opted to pay the fee in two installments.

15th December, 2016

Date of enrolment of individuals in exchange or Marketplace coverage to be effective from 1st January, 2017, after the end of coverage for 2016.

31st December, 2016

Date of provision of notices under the act for Women’s Health and Cancer Rights (WHCRA) and program for Children’s Health Insurance (CHIP) by Plan Administrator along with the materials of annual open enrollment. The model of these notices will be available on the websites of WHCRA and CHIP.

1st January, 2017

Date for the employers to ensure obedience of section 1557 of the ACA for sponsoring wellness programs or health plans and receiving federal financial assistance for heath benefit programs for their employees. Along with it they will have to ensure the absence of any discrimination based on sex, color, national origin, disability, age and disability along with a special focus on the gender identity, sex stereotyping and pregnancy based discrimination.

This section also covers the provision of free language assistance services minimum to the top 15 unskilled English speaking individuals doing business or living in the state.

It is also the date to apply for the final rules of wellness program. These rules offer restrictions on financial incentives and the program should be voluntary and designed to reasonably prevent disease or promote health, especially in ht programs of tobacco cessation, instead of denying the coverage based on non-participation. The review must be completed before this date is no program is reviewed for the compliance of these rules.

31st January, 2017

Date of provision of IRS Form 1095-C to the full-time employees of ALE to offer coverage of health plan for a group. The employers should not wait for the extensions of IRS like last year, as they have to persuade the report to ACA for the second time only.

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