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Faqs

  • Currently we administer our profit-sharing plan in-house. We will be outsourcing the administration of our plan. Who normally pays for this-the employer or the plan participants?

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  • Do you have any simple, low-cost ideas to assist us in communicating our 401(k) plan?

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  • We are considering a change in service providers. Do you have any information that will help us with this endeavor?

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  • We have had our existing 401(k) plan for 4 years. We had a big campaign with the initial roll-out and continue to do something annually, but our participation seems to be at a standstill. Do you ave any suggestions to help us increase our participation?

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  • Are we allowed to correct a defect in a SEP/IRA, SARSEP or SIMPLE IRA plan under any of the employee plan division’s remedial programs such as VCR, SVP, CAP or APRSC?

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  • We have discovered that our profit-sharing plan incorrectly allowed several ineligible employees to participate in the employer discretionary contributions for the plan year. Under the terms of our plan, employer discretionary contributions are allocated in proportion to compensation. Under what IRS remedial program can we correct this problem?

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  • As a new plan administrator, I just received news of the death of one of our plan participants. The beneficiary we have on file is his spouse. Please provide me with some general guidance.

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  • We are considering implementing either a 401(k) plan or a SIMPLE plan. What are some of the factors I should take into consideration in choosing one or the other?

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  • As the plan administrator for our 401(k) plan, am I required to deduct salary deferrals from vacation payout checks that are separate from normal payroll checks?

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  • Last year we incorrectly paid a profit-sharing plan participant 100 percent of his account balance upon termination even though he was only 40 percent vested. We contacted the participant but he refuses to pay back the overpayment. How should we correct this? 

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  • We recently took over the recordkeeping for a small 401(k) plan. Unfortunately, we discovered an error from a few years back that inflated the value of the plan’s assets. Since the prior TPA’s error, some plan participant distributions were over-valued. Who is ultimately responsible? 

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  • Can we administer hardship withdrawals by combining the facts-and-circumstances test for determining immediate and heavy financial need but then use the safe-harbor test to determine if the amount is necessary to satisfy the need? 

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  • We are outsourcing the administration function of our profit-sharing and 401(k) plans. What start-up/conversion expenses can we pay through the plan assets? 

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  • Regarding the IRS guidance on participant loans with a leave of absence, the final procedures state: If a suspension is permitted, the plan loan must be repaid (beginning at the end of the suspension) no later than the latest date on which the loan when originated could have been repaid. Thus the loan payments cannot go beyond five years, assuming the loan is not for a residence. I have a participant who takes out a loan for two years, makes payments for one year, then goes on a LOA for a year. When he returns to work, I think he has up to three years to pay off the loan. Is this interpretation correct?

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  • We are in the process of preparing a proposal to handle the administration of a multiple-employer plan operated by a leasing firm. Please answer the following questions, as they will greatly affect the pricing of our proposal.

    • Are separate 5500s required for each employer?
    • Does each employer have to satisfy the ADP/ACP and top-heavy tests?
    • Can employer match amounts vary by employer?
    • Must plan provisions be consistent for all employers (i.e., loans, hardships, vesting)?
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  • We administer a plan that has an employee who started out as a temporary employee from a temp agency, but later became a permanent employee of our company. Would her date of hire be the date she originally started working for the company or the date she actually went on our company’s payroll?

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  • What is the common practice for stopping plan loan payroll deductions for a participant who goes into bankruptcy? Do you stop deductions as soon as you become aware of the bankruptcy and then default the remaining outstanding balance?

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  • Am I required to add hours of service to make a "service year" for a 401(k) participant who has been out on FMLA?

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  • We have a 401(k) plan that is subject to the joint and survivor annuity requirements. Are we allowed to make the annual required minimum distributions as a 50 percent joint and survivor annuity absent spousal consent?

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  • Our 401(k) plan neglected to suspend participants for the 6-month period following a hardship withdrawal. We would obviously like to self-correct. Please advise how we should proceed specifically with respect to former participants who terminated and took distributions of their mistaken deferrals.

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  • What are the regulations regarding plan information provided to non-English-speaking participants?

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  • We have a 401(k) participant who terminated employment a few months ago. She requested a distribution of her 401(k) balance but became re-employed with us before the distribution was made. Are we required to process the distribution of her pre-separation balance?

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  • Our 401(k) Advisory Committee is in the process of developing an Investment Policy Statement (IPS). PSCA has a sample IPS on the website. Can members use this sample IPS and customize it to their organization and plan?

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  • We are interested in pursuing a strategy of allowing employees with large amounts of vacation/PTO time to contribute a portion of that value to their 401(k) accounts. I believe there has been an IRS ruling on this procedure but can not locate. Could you please provide background and your opinion on this issue?

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  • A question came up about loan documents from our 401(k)/P/S plan. How long are we required to keep this type of documentation for our files? Does the IRS or ERISA have any specific parameters?

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  • We reallocate forfeitures in our profit-sharing plan. Can we use a portion of the forfeiture amount to pay for administrative expenses of this plan?

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