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Notice

Proposed Submission of Information Collection for OMB Review; Comment Request; Payment of Premiums

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Start Preamble

AGENCY:

Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation.

ACTION:

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

SUMMARY:

The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) is modifying the collection of information under its regulation on Payment of Premiums (OMB control number 1212-0009; expiring June 30, 2021) and intends to request that the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) approve the revised collection of information under the Paperwork Reduction Act for three years. This notice informs the public of PBGC's intent and solicits public comment on the collection of information.

DATES:

Comments must be submitted on or before September 30, 2019.

ADDRESSES:

Comments may be submitted by any of the following methods:

  • Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the online instructions for submitting comments.
  • Email: paperwork.comments@pbgc.gov.
  • Mail or Hand Delivery: Regulatory Affairs Division, Office of the General Counsel, Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation, 1200 K Street NW, Washington, DC 20005-4026.

All submissions received must include the agency's name (Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation, or PBGC) and refer to Payment of Premiums. All comments received will be posted without change to PBGC's website, http://www.pbgc.gov, including any personal information provided.

Copies of the revisions to the collection of information may also be obtained by writing to Disclosure Division, Office of the General Counsel, Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation, 1200 K Street NW, Washington, DC 20005-4026, or calling 202-326-4040 during normal business hours. TTY users may call the Federal relay service toll-free at 800-877-8339 and ask to be connected to 202-326-4040.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Melissa Rifkin (rifkin.melissa@pbgc.gov), Attorney, Regulatory Affairs Division, Office of the General Counsel, Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation, 1200 K Street NW, Washington, DC 20005-4026; 202-326-4400, extension 6563. (TTY users may call the Federal relay service toll-free at 800-877-8339 and ask to be connected to 202-326-4400, extension 6563.)

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Section 4007 of title IV of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) requires pension plans covered under title IV pension insurance programs to pay premiums to PBGC. All plans covered by title IV pay a flat-rate per-participant premium. An underfunded single-employer plan also pays a variable-rate premium based on the value of the plan's unfunded vested benefits.

Pursuant to section 4007, PBGC has issued its regulation on Payment of Premiums (29 CFR part 4007). Under § 4007.3 of the premium payment regulation, the plan administrator of each pension plan covered by title IV of ERISA is required to file a premium payment and information prescribed by PBGC for each premium payment year. Premium information is filed electronically using “My Plan Administration Account” (“My PAA”) through PBGC's website. Under § 4007.10 of the premium payment regulation, plan administrators are required to retain records about premiums and information submitted in premium filings.

Premium filings report (i) the flat-rate premium and related data (all plans), (ii) the variable-rate premium and related data (single-employer plans), and (iii) additional data such as identifying information and miscellaneous plan-related or filing-related data (all plans). PBGC needs this information to identify the plans for which premiums are paid, to verify whether the amounts paid are correct, to help PBGC determine the magnitude of its exposure in the event of plan termination, to help track the creation of new plans and transfer of participants and plan assets and liabilities among plans, and to keep PBGC's insured-plan inventory up to date. That information and the retained records are also needed for audit purposes.

PBGC intends to modify the 2020 filing and instructions to require that plans offering a lump sum window [1] separately report the number of participants in pay status who were offered and elected a lump sum in addition to the related current requirement with respect to participants not in pay status. This change reflects recent guidance issued by the Internal Revenue Service.[2] In addition, PBGC intends to change the reporting period for risk transfer activity (lump sum windows and annuity purchases). Rather than the period falling between 60 days before the prior filing and 60 days before the current filing, the reporting period will be the prior premium payment year.

PBGC also intends to modify the filing instructions for a plan that reports that a premium filing will be the last for the plan and checks the “cessation of covered status” box as the reason. Currently, such a plan must provide an explanation as to why they believe coverage has ceased and then PBGC typically contacts the plan to verify that coverage has ceased. PBGC is proposing to add to the instructions that a plan that claims cessation of coverage status should complete a coverage determination request.

PBGC intends to update the premium rates and make conforming, clarifying, and editorial changes to the premium filing instructions.

The collection of information under the regulation has been approved through June 30, 2021, by OMB under control number 1212-0009. PBGC intends to request that OMB approve the revised collection of information for 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 31,245 premium filings per year from Start Printed Page 3769531,245 plan administrators under this collection of information. PBGC further estimates that the annual burden of this collection of information is 13,540 hours and $21,621,540.

PBGC is soliciting public comments to—

  • 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 methodologies and assumptions used;
  • Enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of 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 submission of responses.
Start Signature

Issued in Washington, DC.

Stephanie Cibinic,

Deputy Assistant General Counsel for Regulatory Affairs, Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation.

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Footnotes

1.  PBGC's premium filing instructions define a lump sum window as a temporary opportunity to elect a lump sum in lieu of future annuity payments that is offered to individuals meeting specified criteria who would not otherwise be eligible to elect a lump sum.

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2.  See Notice 2019-18, 2019-13 I.R.B. 915.

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[FR Doc. 2019-16351 Filed 7-31-19; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 7709-02-P