ESOP evaluation from a succession planning perspective

ESOP retirees enjoying a sunset

Strictly defined, an ESOP is considered a retirement plan for employees. But it can also play a role in succession planning by facilitating the transfer of a business to the owner’s children or employees over a period of years in a tax-advantaged way. Not a buyout Although an ESOP is a retirement plan, it invests mainly […]

Proposed regulations for inherited IRAs bring unwelcome surprises

inherited IRAs SECURE 10-Year

In late 2019, the first significant legislation addressing retirement savings since 2006 became law. The Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement (SECURE) Act has resulted in many changes to retirement and estate planning strategies, but it also raised some questions. The IRS has been left to fill the gaps, most recently with the February […]

Time to Increase Your Internal Audit Awareness

Minimizing year-end financial adjustments

May is Internal Audit Awareness Month. While your business may not be required to undergo regular audits, you should consider the benefits of conducting one. An internal audit can reassure stakeholders that you take seriously your fiduciary responsibility. Audits can also help you identify risks before they become intractable problems. Here’s how to initiate and […]

Preparing for New Employee Benefit Plans Audit Standard

Tax planning for businesses

Benefit plans with a year ending after December 15, 2021, are required to follow a new auditing standard (see our overview of the new standard). Statement of Auditing Standard No. 136, Forming an Opinion and Reporting on Financial Statements of Employee benefit Plans Subject to ERISA, provides clarity over management and auditor requirements performed as […]

New Audit Standard for Employee Benefit Plans: What You Need to Know

Benefit plans with a year ending on or after December 15, 2021, will need to follow a new auditing standard. Statement on Auditing Standard No. 136, Forming an Opinion and Reporting on Financial Statements of Employee benefit Plans Subject to ERISA, provides clarity over management and auditor responsibilities and additional transparency in reporting. Updated Reporting […]

Top Ten Strategies for End of Year Planning

tax return

The end of year is approaching—it’s a great time to review your employee benefit plans to ensure they’re compliant and up to date. Below are our top ten strategies: Is your plan on track to require an audit? Generally, most existing benefit plans require an audit once the number of eligible employees exceeds 120 on […]

IRS announces adjustments to key retirement plan limits

In Notice 2021-61, the IRS recently announced 2022 cost-of-living adjustments to dollar limits and thresholds for qualified retirement plans. Here are some highlights: Elective deferrals. The annual limit on elective deferrals (employee contributions) will increase from $19,500 to $20,500 for 401(k), 403(b) and 457 plans, as well as for Salary Reduction Simplified Employee Pensions (SARSEPs). […]

SECURE Act Provisions for Long-Term Part-Time Employees

SECURE Act Provisions for Long-Term Part-Time Employees The SECURE Act, passed and signed into law in 2019, contained the most extensive retirement plan legislation since the Pension Protection Act of 2006. One of the goals of this legislation was to provide opportunities for more people to be able to save for retirement, including part-time employees. […]

Six steps to a smooth Employee Benefit Plan (EBP) audit

Employee benefit plans are a vital way to attract and retain employees, so their effectiveness and compliance should be a priority. However, with so many requirements set forth by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and other regulatory agencies, plan administration can be arduous. Whether you are new to being audited […]

A buyer’s guide: Hiring the right auditor for your benefit plan

return to work checklist

Clark Schaefer Hackett created this buyer’s guide to help you and other plan fiduciaries make an informed decision when hiring a quality auditor for your employee benefit plan audit. This guide covers your fiduciary responsibilities, the timing of a plan audit, audit quality, finding the right auditor and more.

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