Regulatory Updates

2021 Form 5500 Series Informational Copies Released

The Department of Labor’s Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA), the IRS, and the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) jointly released the 2021 Form 5500, Annual Return/Report of Employee Benefit Plan, 2021 Form 5500-SF, Annual Return/Report of Small Employee Benefit Plan, and their respective instructions. The IRS likewise released the 2021 Form 5500-EZ, Annual Return of a One-Participant Retirement Plan or Foreign Plan, and instructions.

In an accompanying news release, the EBSA reminds filers that these are informational copies of the Form 5500 series and cannot be used for filing. The news release further highlights changes made to the Forms, including limited changes announced in a Federal Register Notice on December 29 regarding multiple-employer plans as required by the SECURE Act for 2021. Further SECURE Act related changes will be implemented for the 2022 reporting year and will be announced later. Additional changes for 2021 include the following:

  • A new checkbox for plans retroactively adopted as permitted by the SECURE Act.
  • Updated instructions to reflect the cost-of-living adjustment increase of the civil filing penalty from $2,233 to $2,259.
  • Changes to Schedule MB to report the amount of withdrawal liability payments, revised mortality tables, and changes related to net investment losses due to the coronavirus from the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021.
  • Changes to Schedule SB that expand Line 6 target normal cost into multiple lines related to target normal cost.

The forms will be reviewed for further changes of significance and any findings of consequence will be shared.