ERISA-PBGC Provides Guidance On Reportable Events

In Technical Update 10-4, the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (the “PBGC”) provides guidance, for plan years beginning in 2011, on compliance with the reportable event requirements of section 4043 of ERISA and the underlying PBGC’s regulation (29 CFR part 4043). The Update addresses two topics:

● Funding-related determinations for purposes of waivers, extensions, and the advance reporting threshold test. For these determinations, the Technical Update provides, in general, that for purposes of the reportable events regulation, a plan’s unfunded vested benefits (“UVBs”) and the value of its assets and vested benefits are determined for a plan year beginning in 2011 in the same manner as for variable-rate premiums (“VRPs”) for the preceding plan year.

● Missed quarterly contributions. The Technical Update provides, in general, that for purposes of the reportable events regulation, if a required quarterly contribution for the 2011 plan year is not made to a plan by its due date, and financial inability to make the contribution is not the reason for this event, the reporting requirement under section 4043.25 of the reportable event regulation:

(1) is waived if the plan has fewer than 25 participants for the prior plan year; and
(2) if the plan has at least 25 but fewer than 100 participants for the prior plan year, will be considered satisfied if a simplified notice (described in the Update) is filed with PBGC by the time the report for the event would otherwise be due.

According to the Technical Update, the PBGC expects to supersede this Technical Update with a final rule amending the reportable events regulation sometime during 2011.

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