Regulatory Updates

Proposed Regulations Issued on Pooled Plan Provider Registration

The Department of Labor’s (DOL’s) Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) has issued highly-anticipated proposed regulations on registration requirements for entities that will function as “pooled plan providers” for retirement plans that will be known as pooled employer plans, or PEPs.

PEPs were created by the Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement (SECURE) Act, signed into law in December 2019. They will resemble the existing retirement plan structure, known as multiple employer plans, or MEPs, in which multiple employers participate in a common plan, and are treated as a single plan for certain important purposes, such as filing a single Form 5500, Annual Return/Report of Employee Benefit Plan

PEPs are expected to differ from MEPs in being less likely to have a common interest or owner among participating employers. In a PEP administration, a pooled plan provider (PPP) is the named fiduciary, and must register with the DOL. PEPs can be established for plan years beginning in 2021.

Comments on these proposed regulations will be due 30 days from their upcoming publication in the Federal Register. In addition to this guidance, the EBSA has also issued a news release and fact sheet.

The EBSA news release notes that the proposed regulations include a mock-up of the required registration form, as well its instructions, and also notes that "the registration process [will] involve an initial registration, supplemental filings regarding specific reportable events, and a final filing after the … plan has been terminated and ceased operations."