Partnering with Benefit Professionals, Inc. means we are here to help with the planning, implementation, and administration of your retirement plan. There are different plans and long-term solutions for each company and we are here to help you meet all the standards and goals you want to meet at the highest quality of performance. We want to get to know you - it's all part of our southern hospitality DNA.
Planning is important.
This is especially true when it comes to retirement plans. The purpose of a retirement plan is to provide a way for employees to save for their future. The design and operation of a retirement plan is the key to its success.
The design of a retirement plan has a tremendous affect on a number of items, including:
It is very unlikely a company will have the same design for its plan as the company across the street. We do not offer “cookie cutter” plans to clients. We meet with each client to discuss their company’s demographics and goals and then design the plan that best suits the company’s needs.
We also recognize that needs change over time, whether it’s due to company or legislative changes. We help clients periodically evaluate their plan and make any necessary changes to ensure the plan always serves their needs.
Benefit Professionals, Inc. provides the following types of plans:
Testing and Corrections
Each retirement plan is subject to annual compliance testing and reporting. In order to prove that a retirement plan is not discriminatory toward certain employees, it must undergo various non-discrimination tests. If the plan fails a test, the plan sponsor must correct the plan and may incur penalties associated with the failure.
Information about a retirement plan must also be reported to the IRS. Total assets, total number of participants, failure to timely submit contributions, and amount of a fidelity bond are just a few of the items the IRS is interested in knowing about a retirement plan. If a plan has more than 120 participants, it is required to provide even more information and undergo an annual audit performed by an accounting firm.
Benefit Professionals, Inc. performs annual compliance testing for our clients and prepares and files the necessary forms to report information to the IRS. We also maintain records of compliance testing, government filings, and plan documents and can provide these to the IRS or DOL if the plan is ever audited.
Benefit Professionals, Inc. partners with 401K Safe, LLC, a company that provides 3(16) fiduciary services to clients.
A 3(16) Administrator (not to be confused with a Third-Party Administrator) serves as the Plan Administrator and Plan Trustee. These are fiduciary roles that are normally designated to the Plan Sponsor (usually the owner of the company sponsoring the retirement plan). A 3(16) Administrator handles many responsibilities for the retirement plan, including the following:
The majority of retirement plan mistakes and corrective measures do not involve the plan’s investments or the investment manager(s), but rather stem from errors in the administrative functioning of the plan itself. As the world of plan administration becomes more complex, so do the fiduciary responsibilities of the 3(16) Plan Administrator. With the advent of more frequent audits by the DOL and IRS, it is increasingly more important to make sure retirement plan administration is completed timely as well as accurately to ensure the plan sponsor is insulated from potential fines and penalties associated with errors in a retirement plan.
A Third-Party Administrator (TPA) is an outside party hired by the sponsor of a retirement plan to complete a portion or all compliance and reporting responsibilities of the plan. These duties include, but are not necessarily limited to the following:
There are many duties that must be performed to ensure that retirement plans are compliant with today’s complex tax laws. Due to the recent changes, as well as the recent Fee Disclosure Rules becoming effective, a “perfect storm” has emerged against plan sponsors. Both the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and the Department of Labor (DOL) have become increasingly interested in the overall compliance of retirement plans. This increased interest has led to the hiring of additional agents to conduct retirement plan audits. These new auditors are out there actively looking for mistakes. A retirement plan’s compliance has never been more important than now. A seasoned TPA can keep plan sponsors out of hot water with the Department of Labor and the Internal Revenue Service when that inevitable audit occurs.
The Third-Party Administrator arrangement with us versus the bundled model (combining the administration within the product itself) is an argument as old as retirement plans themselves. So, what is the difference? In a nutshell, our TPA arrangement provides greater flexibility, more plan customization, and personalized service.
Small- to mid-sized companies need more personal attention than larger companies. The lack of resources and fewer HR staff in small- to mid-sized companies means a lack of expertise and time to manage the retirement plan. A TPA bridges the gap by becoming the expert needed to ensure the plan stays in full compliance. With our TPA arrangement, the administration as well as the plan investments can be customized. This means minimal disruption to the participants when there are changes in the design, investments, or providers associated with the plan.