Under ERISA section 4043, the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) must be notified of certain "reportable events." In some cases, advance reporting is required. The reportable events regulation provides for waivers and extensions, some of which are based on quantities used in calculating variable rate premiums (VRP) for the plan year in which the event occurs or becomes effective, calculated as of the "testing date" for that year. The Pension Protection Act of 2006 (PPA) modified the way VRPs are determined and the PBGC implemented those modifications in its premium regulations. The PBGC expects the final rule to be effective sometime in 2011, so interim guidance is necessary. To date, the PBGC has issued four Technical Updates to provide temporary guidance on how to apply the advance reporting threshold test, and the funding-based waivers and extensions, under the reportable events regulation.

Funding-related Determinations for Purposes of Waivers, Extensions and Advance Reporting

The VRP values as of the testing date to be used for an event year beginning in 2011 for purposes of subparts A through C of the reportable events regulation are those determined for premium purposes for the plan year preceding the event year.

Missed Quarterly Contributions for Plans with Fewer than 25 Participants

For plans with fewer than 25 participants and for which a flat-rate premium was payable for the 2010 plan year, the applicable reporting requirement is waived for failure to make one or more required quarterly contributions. This waiver applies only if financial inability to make the contribution is not the reason for one or more missed contributions.

Missed Quarterly Contributions for Plans with Between 25 and 100 Participants

For plans for which a flat-rate premium was payable for the 2010 plan year, the applicable reporting requirement is satisfied for failure to make one or more required quarterly contributions for the 2011 plan year when the following criteria are met:

  • The financial inability is not the reason for the missed contribution.  
  • By the time the first missed reportable event report for the 2011 plan year would otherwise be due, a notice is filed with the PBGC using the sample language found in Technical Update 09-3.