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Notice

Proposed Extension of Information Collection Request; Comment Request; 29 CFR 2550.408b-1

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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This document has been published in the Federal Register. Use the PDF linked in the document sidebar for the official electronic format.

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ACTION:

Notice.

SUMMARY:

The Department of Labor, as part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent burden, provides the general public and Federal agencies with an opportunity to comment on proposed and/or continuing collections of information in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA 95) 44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2)(A). This program helps to ensure that requested data can be provided in the desired format, reporting burden (time and financial resources) is minimized, collection instruments are clearly understood, and the impact of collection requirements on respondents can be properly assessed. Currently, the Pension and Welfare Benefits Administration is soliciting comments concerning the proposed extension of the information collection provisions of the regulation relating to loans to plan participants and beneficiaries who are parties in interest with respect to the plan (29 CFR 2550.408b-1). A copy of the proposed information collection request (ICR) can be obtained by contacting the person listed below in the ADDRESSES section.

DATES:

Written comments must be submitted on or before April 16, 2001.

ADDRESSES:

Gerald B. Lindrew, Department of Labor, Pension and Welfare Benefits Administration, 200 Constitution Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20210, (202) 219-4782 (this is not a toll-free number), FAX (202) 219-4745.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Background

The Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) prohibits a fiduciary with respect to a plan from causing the plan to engage in the direct or indirect lending of money or other extension of credit between the plan a party in interest. ERISA section 408(b)(1) exempts loans made by a plan to parties in interest who are participants and beneficiaries of the plan from this prohibition provided that certain requirements are satisfied. One such requirement is that loans to participants must be made in accordance with specific provisions regarding such loans set forth in the plan. In final regulations published in the Federal Register on July 20, 1989 (54 FR 30520), the Department of Labor provided additional guidance on section 408(b)(1)(C), which requires that loans must be made in accordance with specific provisions set forth in the plan. This ICR relates to the specific provisions which must be included in plan documents for those plans which permit loans to participants.

II. Desired Focus of Comments

The Department of Labor is particularly interested in comments which:

  • Evaluate whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information will have practical utility;
  • Evaluate the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used;
  • Enhance the quality, utility, and clarify the information to be collected; and
  • Minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond, including through the use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology, e.g., permitting electronic submissions of responses.

III. Current Actions

This notice requests comments on the extension of the ICR included in 29 CFR 2550.408b-1. The ICR ensures that participants and beneficiaries are provided with adequate information with respect to matters affecting their benefits. The Department is not proposing or implementing changes to the existing ICR at this time. This existing collection of information should be continued because it ensures that participants and beneficiaries are provided with adequate information with respect to matters affecting their benefits. This ICR also provides additional guidance concerning the statutory requirement that loans to participants be made in accordance with specific written plan provisions.

Type of Review: Extension.

Agency: Pension and Welfare Benefits Administration, Department of Labor.

Title: Regulation Relating to Loans to Plan Participants and Beneficiaries who are Parties in Interest with Respect to the Plan.

OMB Number: 1210-0076.

Affected Public: Business or other for-profit, Not-for-profit institutions, Individuals.

Total Respondents: 1,300.

Frequency: On occasion.

Total Responses: 1,300.

Average Time Per Response: 3 hours.

Estimated Total Burden Hours: 0.

Total Burden Cost (operating/maintenance): $281,000.

Comments submitted in response to this notice will be summarized and/or included in the request for Office of Management and Budget approval of the information collection request; they will also become a matter of public record.

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Dated: February 6, 2001.

Gerald B. Lindrew,

Deputy Director, Office of Policy and Research, Pension and Welfare Benefits Administration.

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[FR Doc. 01-3833 Filed 2-14-01; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4510-29-M