In October 2018, the IRS updated the Employee Compliance Plans Resolution System (EPCRS) by issuing Rev. Proc. 2018-52. EPCRS is a program that allows plan sponsors to correct errors involving qualified plans (such as 401(k) plans, profit sharing plans, defined benefit pension plans, etc.) and certain other types of plans that, if left uncorrected, could jeopardize the tax-favored status of the plan. Among other changes to EPCRS, Rev. Proc. 2018-52 provides that, beginning Jan. 1, 2019, Voluntary Correction Program (VCP) submissions may be made electronically via www.pay.gov. Beginning April 1, 2019, the electronic filing requirement becomes mandatory.

Form 8950 (Application for Voluntary Correction Program) is used to file VCP submissions. In January 2019, the IRS updated the instructions to Form 8950 to reflect the new electronic filing procedures. To submit a VCP application on or after April 1, 2019, the applicant must first create an account at www.pay.gov. Next, the applicant must complete a Form 8950 using the website. Third, documents relating to the VCP submission such as a description of failures, Form 14568 (Model VCP Compliance Statement), applicable schedules and other relevant items must be converted into a single PDF file and uploaded to www.pay.gov. Finally, the applicant must pay the applicable user fee via the website.

Although the new procedures don’t change the substantive requirements of the VCP, plan sponsors should be aware of the new electronic filing requirements to avoid having paper VCP submissions rejected, as the IRS will no longer accept paper submissions beginning April 1.