In December 2013, the IRS issued a revised Form 5300, Application for Determination for Employee Benefit Plan, and revised Instructions for Form 5300 (Instructions). Form 5300 is used to request a favorable determination letter from the IRS regarding the qualified status of an individually designed defined contribution (e.g., 401(k), profit sharing) or defined benefit (e.g., traditional defined benefit, cash balance) plan and the exempt status of any related trust. In certain circumstances, an application for a determination letter for a pre-approved Master & Prototype or Volume Submitter plan may be filed on Form 5300.

The revised Form 5300 and Instructions include numerous changes to both format and content, and require plan sponsors to disclose some additional information. The revised form may take longer to complete, but the changes are expected to increase IRS efficiency, reducing the time it takes to review and process determination letter applications. The IRS will accept the April 2011 version of Form 5300 through June 30, 2014. Determination letter submissions filed after this date must use the revised form. 

The following table provides an overview of significant changes to the Form 5300 and Instructions:

Click here to view the table.