|The 5500 series is due for my short plan year before the DOL will release the 5500 series for that year. What do I do?
When you have a short plan year, due to a plan termination or due to a change in the plan year, regulations provide the ability to use the most recently released 5500 Series for the filing. For example, in 2002 the plan year began 1/1 and ended 12/31. However, in 2003, the plan was terminated and all assets were distributed on 2/28/03. Since the 2003 5500 forms will not be available by the filing deadline for the final plan year, it is necessary to use the 2002 forms to report this plan. With a minimum of effort, Pension Reporter can be used to complete this filing even though the 2002 5500 series has already been prepared for the 2002 plan year.
Below is a step-by-step procedure for doing this:
Step 1 – Add a new plan to the Employer:
a. Click the “New” icon on the tool bar
b. Click “Select Sponsor”
c. Select the Employer’s name from the list.
Step 2 – Complete the Plan Info Screen being sure to:
a. Use a different Plan Ident (first field on the screen) than was used on the original Plan Info Screen for the full plan years.
b. Make sure the plan year begins on 12/31/02 (to allow the system to know to access the 2002 forms) and ends on the last day of the short plan year.
c. To distinguish this plan from the plan file with the full year filings in it, put either “final” or “short year” in the Sort Name
d. All other information on the Plan Info Screen should be the same as in the original Plan Info Screen.
Step 3 – Complete the 2002 5500 Series Forms
a. On any one of the 5500-series forms, change the first day of the plan year to be the actual first day of the short plan year. The plan year begin date will automatically carry over to all other 5500-series forms.
b. Complete the forms as you would normally.
If you make any changes to the Plan Information screens for this plan subsequent to changing the Plan Year Begin date on the forms, or if you click “Refresh PR” from the file menu, you will need to repeat step 3a.
At this time it is not possible to carry-over previous year end data to beginning values for the short plan year in this situation.
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