WASHINGTONThe U.S. Treasury Department and Internal Revenue Service (IRS) on April 2 issued new guidance designed to make it easier for employers to manage automatic enrollment and contribution increases in 401(k) and other types of retirement savings plans.
The guidance contains several changes to the IRS' self-correction program, which enables employers to correct administrative errors within their retirement plans without agency approval and without jeopardizing the plan's tax-preferred status, a Treasury Department statement said.
The guidance simplifies and reduces the cost and burden of the correction process for 401(k) and 403(b) plans using automatic enrollment and/or automatic increases in employees' contributions.
These simplified, safe harbor correction methods build on previous steps to encourage plan sponsors to adopt 'next generation' features and practices that help employees save for retirement, J. Mark Iwry, a Treasury Department senior adviser for retirement and health policy, said.
The Treasury Department said the new correction methods are effective immediately, and that the new correction safe harbor for plans using automatic contribution features applies to administrative errors made prior to 2012.
This report appeared in Crain's Business Insurance magazine, a Chicago-based sister publication of Tire Business.