Different Types of Distributions on a 401(k) Plan

If your company has a 401(k) plan, one of the areas to understand is if your plan allows for different types of distributions, what they entail, and some key items to note regarding each type. The main types of distributions are hardships, termination/rollovers, and in-service. Hardship distributions Not all plans allow for hardship distributions; however …

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Do You Have a Hardship?

Ever since Congress changed the rules to allow plan hardship withdrawals, hardship distributions have been continually increasing among plan participants. There are six safe harbor expenses which the IRS deems to be an immediate and heavy financial need: Purchase of a principal residence College tuition Funeral expenses Eviction from principal residence Medical expenses Repair expenses …

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What You Need to Know When Filing Form 5500

What is Form 5500? Form 5500 is the annual tax return for your retirement plan that must be filed with the Employee Benefit Security Administration (EBSA), a division of the Department of Labor (DOL). It is required by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) to ensure employee benefit plans are operated and …

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Plan Corrections Necessary? DOL Corrections Program

If your company offers an employee benefit plan that is subject to the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (“ERISA”), for example a 401(k) plan, it is important to remember that your Company is responsible for ensuring that the Plan and any plan transactions comply with the fiduciary standards ERISA has created. Even though a Plan …

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Have Lost Participants in Your 401(k) Plan?

Lost participants are those participants who have balances in the plan (unclaimed benefits) or have been distributed an amount from the plan (uncashed benefit checks) and cannot be located. The participant either doesn’t know or forgot they have a balance since their employment was terminated or have relocated with no forwarding address. The participant’s account …

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Hardship Distribution Documentation

IRS requirements are surprisingly vague regarding hardship distributions. In the absence of clear-cut rules, we sometimes see hardship distributions with very little or no supporting documentation. As a plan administrator you should not only comply with the IRS requirements, but also document your compliance with these requirements. Let’s look at a few of the requirements …

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401(k) and 403(b) Plans to Disclose Fees Charged to Participants

If you’re like most people, it’s not easy to determine exactly how much you’re being charged for your employee benefit plan fees.  Some expenses are disclosed on your statement, but some are not.  Instead, they’re deducted from earnings, and only the net earnings amount is shown.  New rules issued by the DOL last week will …

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Required Federal Income Tax Withholdings from 401k Distributions

The IRS has various rules related to income tax withholding from 401k distributions. The most common rule is the minimum 20% that is required to be withheld from eligible rollover distributions. However other withholding requirements can result in either no required withholding or withholdings based on withholding tables used for wages. Eligible rollover distributions are …

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