Determination letter program, six-year cycle for pre-approved plans

Determination letter program, six-year cycle

The IRS today released an advance version of Rev. Proc. 2016-37 that establishes the procedures under the determination letter program for individually designed plans and the six-year remedial amendment cycle system for pre-approved plans.

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Rev. Proc. 2016-37 [PDF 127 KB] modifies the IRS determination letter program for qualified plans to eliminate—as of January 1, 2017—the five-year remedial amendment cycle system for individually designed plans, currently set forth in Rev. Proc. 2007-44. Effective January 1, 2017, a sponsor of an individually designed plan will be permitted to submit a determination letter application only for initial plan qualification, for qualification upon plan termination, and in certain other circumstances.

Today’s revenue procedure also:

  • Provides an extended remedial amendment period under section 401(b) for individually designed plans 
  • Describes and makes clarifying changes to the six-year remedial amendment cycle system for pre-approved qualified plans and modifies the six-year remedial amendment cycle system to reflect changes that have been made to the determination letter program for individually designed plans
  • Delays until August 1, 2017, the beginning of the 12-month submission period for master and prototype (M&P) plan sponsors and volume submitter (VS) practitioners to submit pre-approved defined contribution plans for opinion or advisory letters during the third six-year remedial amendment cycle 
  • Is effective January 1, 2017

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