5500 Preparer's Manual for 2012 Plan Years
The premier resource in the field of Form 5500 preparation, 5500 Preparer's Manual will help you handle the required annual Form 5500 filings for both pension benefits and welfare benefit plans.
The PBGC has issued final regulations permitting its Appeals Board to refer certain appeals to Appeals Board staff or other internal departments for a written response. The amendments also include some minor clarifying and technical changes to the rules for administrative review of agency decisions.
This final regulation formalizes the Appeals Board’s practice of referring certain routine appeals, such as those that allege a mistake of fact or that request a more detailed benefit explanation, to other PBGC departments or Appeals Board staff for a written response. The practice began after the agency concluded that other PBGC departments, such as the Benefits Administration and Payment Department (BAPD), could handle these types of appeals efficiently given their familiarity with the relevant facts underlying the initial benefit determinations.
The regulation amends the regulations to clarify that the Appeals Board may refer certain appeals to other PBGC departments or Appeals Board staff for a response. Appeals that will be subject to referral include those that:
(1) request an explanation of a covered initial benefit determination;
(2) dispute specific data used in a covered initial determination, such as date of hire, date of retirement, date of termination of employment, length of service, compensation, marital status, and the form of benefit elected; or
(3) request an explanation of the limits on benefits payable by PBGC under part 4022, subpart B, such as the maximum guaranteeable benefit and phase-in.
The PBGC department’s or Appeals Board staff’s response will be in writing and address the matters raised in the appeal. Alternatively, appeals referred to BAPD may be answered in the form of a corrected benefit determination. The written response or corrected benefit determination will provide that the appellant may file a written request for review by the Appeals Board within 45 days of the date of the written response or corrected benefit determination.
If a written request for review is not filed with the Appeals Board within 45 days, the Appeals Board will not review the case and the initial determination or corrected benefit determination will become effective under Reg. Sec. 4003.22(a). A written response or corrected benefit determination will not be a decision of the Appeals Board under the regulations. Thus, a person who is issued such a response or corrected benefit determination will not have exhausted his or her administrative remedies unless and until he or she files a request for review by the Appeals Board and a decision granting or denying the relief requested has been issued.