Form 5500 Filing Tips-Who, When, What, How

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Who must file a Form 5500?

Which employers are required to file a Form 5500 for health and welfare plans?

The Form 5500 is an ERISA requirement for all health and welfare plans. All private sector employers, including corporations, S corporations, LLCs, sole proprietorship, partnerships, and non-profits that sponsor insured and self-insured plans subject to ERISA have a filing requirement if they are large plans with 100 or more participants in the plan as of the first date of the plan year.

Do all employers subject to ERISA, sponsoring ERISA benefits need to file a Form 5500?

No. Employers that have unfunded plans with less than 100 participants on the first day of the plan year are exempt from filing.

Which employers are not subject to ERISA and are not required to file a Form 5500?

Entities like church controlled groups and governmental entities like state, city, town, and village governments and public school districts are not subject to ERISA and will not be required to file a Form 5500 even if the plan participation exceeds 100 participants.

What types of health and welfare plans may need a Form 5500?

Employer sponsored benefit plans subject to ERISA, which may require filing include for example plans providing major medical, dental, long-term disability, AD&D, or group term life insurance. In addition, the Health Care flexible spending account (HCFSA) under a cafeteria plan and Health Reimbursement Arrangements (HRA) are subject to filing requirements.

When do you file a Form 5500?

When is a Form 5500 due?

The Form 5500 form is due by the last day of the seventh month following the last day of the plan year. For example, plans that end on December 31st are required to file the Form 5500 by no later than July 31st of the following year.

What if I can’t file the Form 5500 by the deadline?

The employer can file for an extension of up to two and one half months by submitting IRS Form 5558 on or before the original filing deadline.

What common schedules do you include with Form 5500s for HCFSA, HRAs, Insured Plans, and Wrap Plans?

Schedule A includes premium and agent commission details for insured plans and does not apply to self-funded plans such as the Health Care FSA or HRA.

Schedule C provides details on the fees associated with the plan and is typically only provided in the event the reportable fees exceed $5,000. Many ERISA plan will not be required to file Schedule C because participant contributions are held in general assets. A Schedule C may be more common for major medical plans that are self-funded.

Important Note: Form 5500 filings that are solely for employers who have the Health Care FSA or HRA do not require Schedule C information. Schedule C information is only required if the plans included in the Form 5500 keep the money for the funding of the plan in a trust. Generally, most clients keep the money for the funding of the plan in their general assets.

Types of Form 5500 Filing

Health Care FSA or HRA Filings – If the HCFSA and/or HRA is not included in a Wrap Plan filing, the Health Care FSA and HRA would need to file a Form 5500 if either plan has 100 or more participants in the plan as of the first date of the plan year.

Schedule A does not apply to self-funded plans such as the Health Care FSA or HRA.

Schedule C provides details on the fees associated with the plan and is typically only provided in the event the reportable fees exceed $5,000. Many ERISA plan will not be required to file Schedule C because participant contributions are held in general assets.

Wrap Plan Filings – Employers that want the convenience of combining benefits in this way are required to have a wrap plan document. All welfare benefit plans in the Wrap will fall under one ERISA plan number and as a result, file one Form 5500. The main Form 5500 is filed with multiple Schedule A’s and if applicable a Schedule C for coverage under the Wrap plan. Usually the decision to implement a Wrap plan is made when the employer wants to avoid the need to file multiple Forms 5500’s.

Insured Plan Filings-Employers that sponsor employee benefit plans subject to ERISA that do not have a Wrap plan may be required to file a Form 5500 for each line of insurance coverage(s) subject to ERISA that has 100 or more participants on the first day of the plan year. Employers are not required to have a wrap plan document to file a Form 5500 for each line of coverage separately; however, employers would still be required to comply with the plan document and summary plan description requirement for each separate line of coverage.

How do you file the Form 5500?

Form 5500s must be signed and filed electronically either through the Department of Labor (DOL) IFILE system or through an approved EFAST 2 software provider. According to the Form 5500 Instructions, the ERISA plan administrator must keep a copy of the Form 5500—including schedules and attachments—with all required signatures on file as part of the plan’s records.

We are able to assist employers with Wrap Plan Documents and Form 5500 preparation for health and welfare plans. Please contact sales@ebcflex.com for more information.

Categories: Benefits in General, Compliance | Tags: Form 5500 , IRS , EFAST2 , Wrap Plans , Health Care FSA , HRA , Insured Plans , 5500 Preparation , ERISA | Return