Changes to EPCRS (correction program system for retirement plan sponsors)

Correction program system for retirement plan sponsors

The IRS today released an advance version of Rev. Proc. 2015-28 to make two modifications to the employee plans compliance resolution system (EPCRS) as established by Rev. Proc. 2013-12.

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The changes in Rev. Proc. 2015-28 [PDF 70 KB] provide:

  • New safe harbor EPCRS correction methods relating to automatic contribution features (including automatic enrollment and automatic escalation of elective deferrals) in section 401(k) and 402(b) plans
  • Special safe harbor correction methods for plans (including those with automatic contribution features) that have features of limited duration and involve elective deferrals

Background

Rev. Proc. 2013-12 [PDF 71 KB] was issued in early January 2015 for updating the system of correction programs for sponsors of retirement plans that are intended to satisfy the requirements of sections 401(a), 403(a), 403(b), 408(k), or 408(p), but that have not met these requirements for a period of time. That correction program system—the EPCRS—permits plan sponsors to correct these failures and continue to provide their employees with retirement benefits on a tax-favored basis. The components of EPCRS are:

  • The self-correction program (SCP)
  • The voluntary correction program (VCP)
  • The audit closing agreement program (Audit CAP)

Last week, the IRS issued modifications in Rev. Proc. 2015-27 [PDF 97 KB] described as miscellaneous changes made to improve EPCRS such as:

  • Reducing voluntary correction program (VCP) compliance fees relating to failures to meet the requirements of section 72(p) with respect to participant loans
  • Clarifying that for certain “overpayments,” a plan may use correction methods other than the correction methods under Rev. Proc. 2013-12

Rev. Proc. 2015-27 also requests comments on recoupment of overpayments.

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