ERISA (the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974) is a federal law that sets minimum standards for retirement and health benefit plans in private industry.
In order to ensure that employee benefit plans are operated and managed in accordance with those standards and that participants and beneficiaries have access to sufficient information to protect their rights and benefits under their plans, ERISA includes detailed requirements for reporting to the government and disclosure to participants by plan administrators, sponsors, and employers.
The 2011 Employee Benefit Plan Compliance Calendar provides bottom line information on ERISA-mandated notices, disclosures and filings including who must provide them, who must receive them, and when disclosures are due.
Please note that the applicability of certain requirements may depend on the type of employee benefit plan administered, the number of participants, or other circumstances. Additionally, your plan may be subject to other requirements that are not included in this calendar, such as certain reporting and disclosures required by the Internal Revenue Service or by state law.
A Note Regarding Penalties Under ERISA
The Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) shares responsibility with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PGBC) for the administration and enforcement of ERISA. In carrying out its enforcement responsibilities, EBSA conducts investigations to determine whether the provisions of ERISA have been violated and seeks appropriate remedies to correct violations of the law. In addition to the imposition of civil penalties, criminal penalties may apply in the event that certain provisions of ERISA are willfully violated.