Administration of a retirement plan involves adherence and compliance with technical IRS and Department of Labor regulations, which are rapidly changing. Many employers find themselves looking for a quality Third Party Administrator (TPA) firm. 

Pension Planners Northwest (PPNW) delivers a thorough, methodical and organized approach to meet the demand for back office support of a retirement plan.

• Plan Design and Document •

The starting point for any successful retirement plan is to design a plan to meet an employer’s objectives for sponsoring the plan. Plan document design, drafting, maintenance and operational compliance are critical to maintaining the tax qualified status of the plan. Adherence to the terms of the document will allow the employer to steer clear of costly and time-consuming corrections and penalties. Moreover, the link between design and operation will produce expected outcomes for the plan sponsor and participants.

Our design service incorporates fundamental knowledge of the relationship between employee compensation, plan contributions and tax deferrals. We will design a 401(k), Match and/or Profit Sharing plan to meet your employee compensation and benefits specifications. 

• Annual Administration and Reporting •

PPNW will assign a single Administrator to deliver primary support and service. The basic services delegated by the Plan Sponsor to a PPNW Administrator are:
  1. Enter and review employee data to include Compensation that the Client has reconciled to the Plan’s definition of Compensation and to IRS payroll reports.
  2. Determine Employee eligibility to participate in the Plan.
  3. Review plan documents for potential amendments and necessary updates.
  4. Prepare financial statements for the trust.
  5. Calculation of contributions.
  6. Allocate Contributions and Earnings to Participant accounts annually.
  7. Review compliance issues such as vesting, key employees, highly compensated employees.
  8. Check plan compliance with IRC Sections 401(a)(4), 401(k), 401(m), 404, 410(b), 414(s), 415 and 416.
  9. Prepare Government Form 5500 and related schedules.
  10. Prepare a bound report containing plan specifications, financial statements, a listing of eligible/ineligible employees, a summary of participants' accounts, a summary of distributions, and the necessary Government tax forms. 
  11. Prepare the Summary Annual Report.
  12. Review fiduciary bond status.
  13. Prepare a letter covering any issues to be reviewed with you with respect to the activity during the period.
  14. Review participant distribution documentation.
  15. Prepare annual participant statements if appropriate.
  16. Assist in set up and administration of participant loans, if applicable.

All Administrator work is reviewed by a PPNW Shareholder prior to client delivery. Our Annual Report and Management Letter (#10 and #13 above) are delivered by a PPNW Shareholder to plan managers and trustees and reviewed in detail at their location.

• Trust Accounting •  

Our preparation of retirement plan financial statements will include Trust Accounting services for plans using Self Directed Brokerage Accounts or plans where the assets are Trustee Directed.  The Statement of Changes (income statement) will include detail on the purchases, sales, dividends and gains/losses associated with each account.  The practice of Trust Accounting for a retirement plan ensures accurate reporting on the Form 5500 and, if required, audited financial statements. 

• IRS Audits and DOL Investigations •

Our expertise and ability to support clients in matters of audit and/or investigation are unparalleled.  Over the years, we have assisted many clients in the development, coordination and delivery of information to IRS auditors and Department of Labor investigators.  The likelihood of minimal financial exposure to the plan sponsor and early closure of the audit or investigation is dependent on efficient, timely and appropriate responses to requests for information.

• ERISA Consulting •

The Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) established laws and governance for today’s retirement plans.  We believe our role is to help clients understand, navigate and comply with the fiduciary standards set forth in ERISA.  We will review client procedures and practices to help mitigate ERISA violations and lessen the burden of a DOL investigation or IRS audit.  While some violations may be resolved simply or through Voluntary Correction Procedures, more complex and potentially costly ERISA compliance issues may need the counsel of an ERISA attorney.  We maintain a trusted network of referrals for this purpose. 

Meet our team and connect with your Plan Administrator or Consultant today!