IRS Preparing a Multitude of Employee Plan Guidance

May 5, 2004 ( - The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is preparing guidance on the rules for 403(b) plans and 457 plans and on the notice requirements under the Pension Funding Equity Act of 2004.

Speaking to proposed 403(b) regulations, Paul Shultz, Director of Employee Plans Determination Redesign said the proposed rules would consolidate previously issued guidance and reflect legislative changes.   Shultz said plan sponsors should expected the proposed regulations by June, according to CCH’s coverage of the 2004 Great Lakes Benefits Conference, co-sponsored by the IRS and the American Society of Pension Actuaries (ASPA) in Chicago.  

>Additionally, Shultz said an update of 403(b) examination guidelines was being worked on by the IRS.

By the end of June, plan sponsors can also expect guidance on 457 plans in the form of a revenue ruling, in addition to model 457 plan language .

Also making a presentation at the conference was Martin Pippins, Manager of EP Technical Guidance and Quality Assurance, who said plan sponsor should expect guidance in “a few weeks” to address Pension Funding Equity Act of 2004 notification requirements, specifically, the notice to the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) and to participants and beneficiaries where a plan elects to use an alternative deficit reduction contribution permitted by the Act.   Additionally, the IRS is developing guidance that would address multiemployer funding notices required under the Act, Pippins said.

The IRS is also readying guidance in the form of proposed regulations under Internal Revenue Code Section 415, which would consolidate and update the rules to reflect changes in the law. Other current projects include the finalization of minimum distribution regulations for defined benefit plans and guidance on military service accruals and the use of electronic technologies by employee benefit plans.