The U.S. Department of Labor announced that its Employee Benefits Security Administration, the Department of the Treasury, the IRS, and the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp., jointly will issue a request for information soliciting public input as the federal government reviews the effectiveness of existing reporting and disclosure requirements for retirement plans, as required by the SECURE 2.0 Act of 2022.
“The Employee Benefits Security Administration is focused on empowering America’s workers and families by making it easier to understand their workplace benefits,” says Assistant Secretary for Employee Benefits Security Lisa M. Gomez. “This request for information is an important step to explore how the content, design, and delivery of disclosures required for retirement plans may be reimagined, improved, consolidated, standardized, and simplified to enhance participants’ understanding of their rights and benefits, promote greater participant engagement, and improve outcomes for people across the country.”
The Employee Retirement Income Security Act and the Internal Revenue Code include requirements on the information about retirement plan benefits and features that must be reported to the agencies and provided to plan participants and beneficiaries. In the SECURE 2.0 Act, Congress directed the agencies to review these ERISA and code requirements.
The agencies will report their findings and recommendations on revamping the requirements to Congress in 2025. They look forward to feedback from a range of stakeholders to inform their report to Congress and any action taken later to improve the reporting and disclosure framework for retirement plans.
The RFI, which will be posted on each agency’s website and published in the Federal Register, includes 24 topics on a broad range of topics relevant to effective reporting and disclosure. These topics include the number and frequency of disclosures received by workers, information disclosed and its effectiveness, accessibility, and understandability, including to non-English speakers, how plans obtain and update contact information for workers, and plans’ experiences.
The RFI includes a 90-day period for public comments and instructions on how to submit them.