The calendars summarize the annual compliance requirements and disclosure obligations that retirement and health plan sponsors need to know. The content in these calendars may cause plan sponsors to consider their current approaches, Segal says.
For example, sponsors of private-sector defined benefit (DB) and defined contribution (DC) retirement plans must satisfy rules requiring that coverage, benefit amounts and the availability of benefits, rights and features do not discriminate in favor of highly compensated employees. “This testing is generally required each year, but can be every third year in certain circumstances,” says Serena Simons, National Retirement Compliance leader. “Plan sponsors should check the last time they performed this testing.”
Also, Congress and the federal agencies that regulate plans covered by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) have taken action to help plan sponsors, plans and participants affected by the 2017 hurricanes and wildfires. “Both retirement and health plan sponsors may want to consider offering relief of different types to affected individuals in specified disaster areas,” notes Simons. “They should check the agency websites for more information.”
For health plan sponsors, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) 40% excise tax on high-cost health plans above a certain threshold is still scheduled to take effect in 2020. “Plan sponsors should take action now to evaluate when and under what circumstances their plans could be expected to reach the excise tax thresholds and by how much,” says Kathy Bakich, National Health Compliance practice leader. “With those estimates in hand, plan sponsors can begin the process of deciding whether to consider plan design changes that would help them lower total plan costs.”