IRS Moves Certain Deadlines for DB, 403(b) Plans

The agency says it is postponing deadlines for certain time-sensitive actions required by these plans and others because of the COVID-19 emergency.

The IRS is postponing deadlines for certain time-sensitive actions because of the COVID-19 emergency. This relief is provided with respect to certain employment taxes, employee benefit plans, exempt organizations, individual retirement arrangements (IRAs), Coverdell education savings accounts, health savings accounts (HSAs) and Archer and Medicare Advantage medical saving accounts (MSAs) that, with certain exceptions, are due to be performed on or after March 30 and before July 15.

In addition, the IRS is providing a temporary waiver of the requirement that Certified Professional Employer Organizations (CPEOs) file certain employment tax returns and their accompanying schedules on magnetic media.

According to Notice 2020-35, the revised deadline for an affected taxpayer to perform a time-sensitive action described in the notice is July 15, unless a different revised deadline is specified.

Time-sensitive actions listed in the notice include, among other things:

  • An application for a funding waiver under Section 412(c) for a defined benefit (DB) plan that is not a multiemployer plan.
  • With respect to a multiemployer defined benefit pension plan, actions due to be performed on or before the dates described in Internal Revenue Code (IRC) Section 432(b)(3) for the certification of funded status and the notice to interested parties of that certification; Sections 432(c)(1) and 432(e)(1) for the adoption of, and the notification to the bargaining parties of the schedules under, a funding improvement plan or rehabilitation plan; and Sections 432(c)(6) and 432(e)(3) for the annual update of a funding improvement plan and its contribution schedules, or rehabilitation plan and its contribution schedules, and the filing of those updates with the Form 5500 annual return.
  • With respect to a compliance statement issued under the IRS’ voluntary correction program (VCP), implementation of all corrective actions, including adoption of corrective amendments, required by the compliance statement.
  • For DB plans, request for approval of a substitute mortality table in accordance with Section 430(h)(3)(C).

In addition, the period beginning on March 30 and ending on July 15 will be disregarded in the calculation of any interest or penalty for failure to file the Form 5330 or to pay the excise tax postponed by the notice. Interest and penalties with respect to such postponed filing and payment obligations will begin to accrue on July 16.

With respect to the remedial amendment period and plan amendment rules for Section 403(b) plans described in Revenue Procedure 2017-18 and Revenue Procedure 2019-39, the deadline for actions that are otherwise required to be performed on or before March 31, with respect to form defects or plan amendments, is postponed to June 30.

With respect to pre-approved DB plans, the deadline for the following actions is postponed until July 31:

  • Adoption of a pre-approved defined benefit plan that was approved based on the 2012 Cumulative List;
  • Submission of a determination letter application under the second six-year remedial amendment cycle; and
  • Actions that are otherwise required to be performed with respect to disqualifying provisions during the remedial amendment period that would otherwise end on April 30.
Notice 2020-35 will be published in Internal Revenue Bulletin 2020-25 on June 15.​