ERISA Pros Releases New Document Package to Meet Disclosure Compliance Requirements of ERISA
ERISA Pros releases a new package of forms, instructions, and checklists to help employers comply with ERISA document Disclosure requirements relating to their Summary Plan Descriptions (SPD), Summary of Material Modifications (SMM), and Summary Annual Reports (SAR) to Plan Participants. Electronic communication is rapidly taking the place of paper; however, electronic document delivery requires several additional steps to be compliant under ERISA. ERISA Pros’ new document package will alleviate confusion and make delivery of ERISA documents easy, efficient, and cost effective for employers—whether by paper or electronic means.
Atlanta, GA (Vocus) January 28, 2010
ERISA Pros, LLC, a leading vendor of ERISA compliance services for Health and Welfare Benefit Plans, announces the release of a new package of forms, instructions, and check lists for employers to easily, efficiently, and cost effectively comply with complicated Department of Labor (DOL) disclosure requirements. The DOL requires that employers disclose certain Plan information to Participants and Beneficiaries through various reports, such as SPDs, SARs, SMMs, and other ERISA documents. The DOL imposes strict requirements as to the content, as well as the timing, frequency, and method of delivery of these documents.
An employer may be fined up to $110 per day for each day that these documents are delivered after the deadline. This penalty applies for each Plan and is cumulative. According to Bernard Kearse, JD, LLM (http://erisapros. com/about-us. html), founder of ERISA Pros, “Where an employer maintains separate life, health, dental and disability plans that are not part of a single wrap plan arrangement, the $110 a day penalty is applicable to each plan. If this employer delivers its SPDs just 30 days late, it can be fined up to $13,200! ERISA Pros’ “Wrap-Tight” SPD (http://erisapros. com/how-you-save. html) approach reduces that employer’s exposure to only $3,300 for all four plans.”
Material that is required to be furnished to Participants must be delivered in a way reasonably calculated to ensure actual receipt of the material. An employer may use paper and/or electronic delivery methods. However, merely placing a supply of documents in the employer’s break room, posting them on the company’s website, or instructing employees to pick up a copy from the HR department does not satisfy the DOL delivery requirements.
Electronic communication is rapidly taking the place of traditional paper correspondence sent through the mail. An employer can enjoy significant savings in printing costs, time, and labor by utilizing electronic delivery methods, such as email and posting the material on its website. However, electronic delivery methods require additional steps including delivering a “Notice and Disclosure Regarding Electronic Disclosure” to Participants and obtaining a “Consent to Receive Disclosures Electronically” from them prior to actual delivery of materials. Kearse adds, “Our new package of forms, instructions, and checklists take the guesswork and hassle out for employers. ERISA Pros makes electronic document delivery easy, efficient, and cost effective.”
About ERISA Pros:
ERISA Pros provides ERISA compliance solutions for Health & Welfare Benefit Plans, including Plan Documents, wrap SPDs, and Form 5500 electronic preparation and electronic filing services. Atlanta attorney, Bernard Kearse, JD, LLM, founded ERISA Pros to fill the need for high quality, yet affordable documents and services. For a complimentary ERISA compliance evaluation (http://erisapros. com/cgi-bin/cbtform? form_id=free_consultation) or for additional information on ERISA Pros, contact Bernard Kearse.
Bernard V. Kearse, III, JD, LLM
ERISA Pros, LLC
Suite 800; 990 Hammond Dr. NE
Atlanta, Ga. 30328