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Notice

Proposed Submission of Information Collection for OMB Review; Comment Request; Qualified Domestic Relations Orders Submitted to PBGC

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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AGENCY:

Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation.

ACTION:

Notice of intent to request extension of OMB approval of information collection.

SUMMARY:

Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (“PBGC”) intends to request that the Office of Management and Budget (“OMB”) extend approval, under the Paperwork Reduction Act, of the collection of information in PBGC's booklet, Qualified Domestic Relations Orders & PBGC (OMB control number 1212-0054; expires August 31, 2009). The booklet provides guidance on how to submit a qualified domestic relations order (a “QDRO”) to PBGC. This notice informs the public of PBGC's intent and solicits public comment on the collection of information.

DATES:

Comments must be submitted by July 21, 2009.

ADDRESSES:

Comments may be submitted by any of the following methods:

  • Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the Web site instructions for submitting comments.
  • E-mail: paperwork.comments@pbgc.gov.
  • Fax: 202-326-4224.
  • Mail or Hand Delivery: Legislative and Regulatory Department, Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation, 1200 K Street, NW., Washington, DC 20005-4026.

PBGC will make all comments available on its Web site at http://www.pbgc.gov.

Copies of the collections of information may be obtained without charge by writing to the Disclosure Division of the Office of the General Counsel of PBGC at the above address or by visiting that office or calling 202-326-4040 during normal business hours. (TTY and TDD users may call the Federal relay service toll-free at 1-800-877-8339 and ask to be connected to 202-326-4040.) The current QDRO booklet is available on PBGC's Web site at http://www.pbgc.gov.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Jo Amato Burns, Attorney, Legislative and Regulatory Department, Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation, 1200 K Street, NW., Washington, DC 20005-4026, 202-326-4024. (For TTY/TDD users, call the Federal relay service toll-free at 1-800-877-8339 and ask to be connected to 202-326-4024.)

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

A defined benefit pension plan that does not have enough money to pay benefits may be terminated if the employer responsible for the plan faces severe financial difficulty, such as bankruptcy, and is unable to maintain the plan. In such an event, PBGC becomes trustee of the plan and pays benefits, subject to legal limits, to plan participants and beneficiaries.

The benefits of a pension plan participant generally may not be assigned or alienated. Title I of ERISA provides an exception for domestic relations orders that relate to child support, alimony payments, or marital property rights of an alternate payee (a spouse, former spouse, child, or other dependent of a plan participant). The exception applies only if the domestic relations order meets specific legal requirements that make it a qualified domestic relations order.

When PBGC is trustee of a plan, it reviews submitted domestic relations orders to determine whether the order is qualified before paying benefits to an alternate payee. The requirements for submitting a domestic relations order and the contents of such orders are established by statute. The models and the guidance provided by PBGC assist parties by making it easier for them to comply with ERISA's QDRO requirements in plans trusteed by PBGC; they do not create any additional requirements and result in a reduction of the statutory burden.

OMB has approved the collection of information in PBGC's booklet, Qualified Domestic Relations Orders & PBGC under control number 1212-0054 through August 31, 2009. PBGC intends to request that OMB extend its approval for another three years. An agency may not conduct or sponsor, and a person is not required to respond to, a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number.

PBGC estimates that it will receive 895 domestic relations orders each year from prospective alternate payees and participants. PBGC further estimates that the total average annual burden of this collection of information will be 2085 hours and $496,302.

PBGC is soliciting public comments to—

  • Evaluate whether the proposed collections of information are 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 collections of information, including the validity of the methodologies and assumptions used;
  • Enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and
  • Minimize the burden of the collections 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 submission of responses.
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Issued in Washington, DC, this 19th day of May 2009.

John H. Hanley,

Director, Legislative and Regulatory Department, Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation.

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[FR Doc. E9-12021 Filed 5-21-09; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 7709-01-P