IRS to Conduct Exams of Questionnaire Non-Responders

February 23, 2011 ( - The Internal Revenue Service’s Employee Plans Compliance Unit announced the completion of the information-gathering phase of its 401(k) Questionnaire Project.

However, the agency said it will conduct a full-scope examination of plans whose sponsors who did not return the Questionnaire to provide the data needed for its 401(k) market segment analysis. The project began in May 2010 (see IMHO: Compliance “Deportment”).  

In the Winter 2011 edition of the agency’s Retirement News for Employers newsletter, the IRS said the next phase in the project is to evaluate responses from the completed questionnaires to better understand 401(k) plan compliance issues, determine how our tools and voluntary compliance programs are working, and identify participant awareness and plan sponsor compliance issues.   

The agency is encouraging all plan sponsors to use the Questionnaire as an internal control tool to review their plans and determine if they are in compliance. Sponsors can follow up by using the IRS’ correction programs to fix any plan mistakes.  

An interim report with general findings from the Questionnaire will be posted on by the end of September, and a final report will be posted next year.  

The newsletter is at,,id=122823,00.html.