Retirement Plan Outlook: 2024 Deadlines and Action Items

January 10, 2024

Launch 2024 by marking your calendars with compliance requirements. Following are links to and summaries of important 2024 deadlines and action items for employer retirement plans.

Retirement Plan Amendment Requirements

There are no required retirement plan amendments for 2024.

Most retirement plan documents will have to be amended by December 31, 2025 (or 2027 for governmental and collectively bargained plans) for the following legislation:

  • The Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement Act (SECURE)
  • The Bipartisan American Miners Act (Miners)
  • The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES)
  • The SECURE 2.0 Act of 2022 (SECURE 2.0)

While amendments for such legislation are not required in 2024, retirement plan sponsors who have implemented optional provisions under SECURE, Miners, CARES and SECURE 2.0 should maintain written documentation of their process and procedures regarding such implementation.

In Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Notice 2023-79 (the most recent required amendments list), the IRS did not identify any required amendments for individually designed qualified and 403(b) plans in 2024.

Under IRS Announcement 2023-6, sponsors of defined benefit plans in an IRS preapproved format have until March 31, 2025 to adopt a newly approved document. This document will conform a defined benefit plan to the 2020 required amendments list.

Tools and Resources for Retirement Plan Sponsors

Retirement plan sponsors face compliance deadlines in 2024 that arise in the normal course of plan administration. 2024 also brings new cost-of-living limitations that apply to retirement plans. Below is information about these deadlines and limitations.

2024 Retirement Plan Compliance Calendars

Plan sponsors can access detailed guidance on the regular administrative compliance deadlines in our calendars for defined benefit pension plans and defined contribution plans:

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2024 Cost-of-Living Adjustments

The IRS annually publishes cost-of-living adjustments (COLA) applicable to defined benefit pension plans and defined contribution plans. Access the 2024 COLA adjustments here.

Recommended Action for Retirement Plan Sponsors in 2024

USI Consulting Group (USICG) recommends plan sponsors maintain fiduciary files for their retirement plans. There are many benefits of maintaining a fiduciary file for your retirement plan:

  • Plan governance documentation organized in one convenient location
  • Preparedness for audits by the plan’s accountant, IRS or Department of Labor
  • Preparedness for due diligence in the context of mergers and/or acquisitions
  • Identification of potential compliance issues to address outside of enforcement
  • Improved fiduciary structures and compliance and mitigating liability
  • Avoidance of administrative errors or missed deadlines in the event of turnover

Here is a list of items you might maintain in your fiduciary file for your retirement plan:

  • Governing plan document (including any basic plan document, adoption agreement, amendment, IRS determination letter, or IRS opinion letter), in chronological order, all executed and dated
  • Summary plan description (including any summary of material modifications thereto)
  • Retirement committee charter (or a list of plan provisions regarding governance), including any written delegations from the board of directors or other managing body
  • Investment policy statement
  • ERISA fidelity bond
  • Any liability insurance covering ERISA fiduciaries
  • Service agreements with plan service providers (e.g., platform provider, investment advisor or manager, third-party administrator, or auditor), including ERISA fee disclosures
  • Form 5500, all attachments and any audit report, for the past six plan years
  • Regulatory participant notices (e.g., safe harbor notice, blackout notice, participant fee disclosure, QDIA notice, summary annual report or notice of reduction of benefit accruals) for the past six plan years
  • Investment advisor plan performance reports from the plan’s investment advisor (including any retirement plan service provider fee benchmarking) for the past six years
  • Retirement committee minutes, in writing, documenting and explaining important committee decisions (e.g., qualification of domestic relations orders or beneficiary determinations)
  • Governmental filings, routine or corrective
  • Governmental correspondence during the past six years

This information is provided solely for educational purposes and is not to be construed as investment, legal or tax advice. Prior to acting on this information, we recommend that you seek independent advice specific to your situation from a qualified investment/legal/tax professional.