Compliance News | June 22, 2022

Due Dates for DC Plan Lifetime Illustrations Approaching

All ERISA-covered DC plans with participant direction of investments need to provide benefit statements with benefit illustrations to all participants with account balances by August 14, 2022. DC plans without participant direction have various due dates depending on the plan’s plan year.

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We described the substantive details of the benefit illustrations in our February 11, 2021 insight, “DOL Guidance on Illustrating DC Plan Lifetime Income.” We provided further information in a July 29, 2021 insight, “Dates for Annuity Illustrations in DC Plan Statements.” This insight updates the due dates to reflect the latest information and to emphasize that the DOL is not likely to provide any additional information before the first benefit statements with benefit illustrations are due.

Background

In September 2020, the DOL published an interim final rule (IFR) addressing the new benefit illustration requirements for DC plans. The DOL requested comments on the IFR and promised a final rule prior to the time plans must provide the illustrations. The DOL has not yet issued that guidance.

With statements and illustrations due soon, in the absence of further guidance, DC plan sponsors, after consultation with plan counsel, may wish to consider following the IFR since that is the only guidance published to date.

The due dates

For DC plans with participant direction of investments, the benefit statements with illustrations must be provided for the second calendar quarter of 2022, which ends June 30, 2022. For such plans, the plan is in good-faith compliance with benefit statement requirements if it provides a statement with illustrations to participants and beneficiaries with an account under the plan within 45 days of the end of the quarter (i.e., by August 14, 2022). The due date is the same regardless of the plan’s plan year.

For DC plans without participant direction of investments, the benefit statement with illustrations must be provided at the same time the Form 5500 annual report is due (including extensions). Under the IFR’s effective date structure, this will be (with the extension) July 15, 2022 for a plan with a plan year that begins on October 1 and August 15, 2022 for a plan with a plan year that begins November 1. For a calendar-year plan, the due date would be October 17, 2022. The due date is the next business day after a weekend or holiday because it is tied to the Form 5500 due date.

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This page is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal, tax or investment advice. You are encouraged to discuss the issues raised here with your legal, tax and other advisors before determining how the issues apply to your specific situations.

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