Human Resource & Labor News
www.agc.orgJune 15, 2010 / Issue No. 3-10
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On the Inside
Labor Relations
New Contract Clause and Posting Requirement for Federal Contractors
Court Upholds Large Arbitration Award for Unionís Breach of Most-Favored Nation Clause
Compliance & Enforcement
New Health Care Law Requires Accommodations for Nursing Mothers; May Pose Challenge for Construction Industry
IRS Asks Employers to Answer 401 (k) Questionnaire; Employers Should Proceed With Caution
DOL Updates Web-based Compliance Tool to Help Employers Understand and Comply with Laws
AGC Represents Contractors at Wage and Hour Division Stakeholder Forum
Pensions
Number of Green-Zone Multiemployer Pension Plans Up From 2009 but Still Down From 2008
Hiring & Firing
IRS Releases Updated HIRE Act FAQs and Revised W-2 & W-3 Forms for Employers
Professional Development
Registration Open for HR Professionals Conference and Training and Development Conference
AGC Provides Training to Help Contractors Avoid Worker Misclassification Liability
IRS Asks Employers to Answer 401 (k) Questionnaire; Employers Should Proceed With Caution
 

In an effort to increase voluntary compliance, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) recently announced that it began randomly questioning 1,200 sponsors of 401(k) plans as a part of a compliance check program administered by its Employee Plans Compliance Unit.  Sponsors of the selected plans were expected to receive a letter that was mailed the week of May 17, 2010, describing the program and directing them to a secure website where they will have 90 days to complete an online compliance questionnaire.  The IRS says it will use the information gathered for education, outreach and enforcement actions.

The online questionnaire will collect information on the following topics:

  • demographics,
  • plan participation,
  • plan contributions (both employer and employee),
  • top-heavy and non-discrimination rules,
  • distributions and plan loans,
  • other plan operations,
  • automatic contribution arrangements,
  • designated Roth features,
  • IRS voluntary correction/compliance programs, and plan administration.

According to the IRS, completing the questionnaire is voluntary and is not an audit or investigation; however, further enforcement action from the IRS, including a full audit of the plan, should be expected if a sponsor chooses not to respond to the request.

Plan sponsors who receive such a request are encouraged to exercise caution when completing the questionnaire by having someone who is knowledgeable about plan compliance requirements complete it, and have a tax or employment law attorney licensed to practice in the state assist with correcting or addressing any compliance issues that may be discovered as a result of the questionnaire.
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