Field Assistance Bulletins

Field Assistance Bulletins (or FABs) are written by the Office of Regulations and Interpretations to the Director of Enforcement and Regional Directors to provide guidance in response to questions that have arisen in field operations. FABs may also include transition enforcement relief that permits employers, plan officials, service providers and others time to respond to new laws or regulations.

2015
Document Number
Subject
Issue
Selection and Monitoring under the Annuity Selection Safe Harbor Regulation for Defined Contribution Plans

A regulation issued by the Department in 2008 at 29 CFR 2550.404a-4 regarding the selection of annuity providers under defined contribution plans (Safe Harbor Rule) provides plan fiduciaries with safe harbor conditions for the selection and monitoring of annuity providers and annuity contracts for benefit distributions.

ERISA's Annual Funding Notice Requirements Following the Highway and Transportation Funding Act of 2014

Guidance under section 101(f) of ERISA relating to single-employer defined benefit plan annual funding notice requirements pursuant to the Highway and Transportation Funding Act of 2014 (HATFA), including a modified supplement to the model annual funding notice that plan administrators may use to comply with the requirements of section 101(f)(2)(D).

2014
Document Number
Subject
Issue
Supplemental FAQs on Apprenticeship and Training Plan Expenses - Skills Competitions

Guidance on the permissible use of plan assets by apprenticeship and training plans to pay expenses related to skills contests and competitions.
 

Fiduciary Duties and Missing Participants in Terminated Defined Contribution Plans

This Bulletin updates departmental guidance on how fiduciaries of terminated defined contribution plans can fulfill their obligations under ERISA to locate missing participants and properly distribute the participants’ account balances.

 

2013
Document Number
Subject
Issue
Required Annual Fee Disclosure <p> 29 CFR § 2550.404a-5

This Bulletin supplements the participant-level disclosure regulation by providing a temporary enforcement policy that will allow 401(k)-type plans to "re-set" the timing for the distribution of the comparative chart with investment-related information that they are required to furnish annually to plan participants. (with corrected citation)

Defined Benefit Plan Annual Funding Notice - MAP-21

Interim guidance under section 101(f) of ERISA relating to single-employer defined benefit plan annual funding notice requirements pursuant to the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act.

 
2012
Document Number
Subject
Issue
Fee Disclosure Guidance

This Bulletin supplements the participant-level disclosure regulation by providing guidance on some of the most frequently asked questions concerning the participant-level disclosure regulation and how it may be implemented. It also provides guidance concerning requirements of the 408(b)(2) regulation that relate to the participant-level disclosure regulation. This FAB supersedes FAB 2012-02.

Fee Disclosure Guidance
29 CFR § 2550.404a-5
29 CFR § 2550.408b-2

This Bulletin supplements the participant-level disclosure regulation by providing guidance on some of the most frequently asked questions concerning the participant-level disclosure regulation and how it may be implemented. It also provides guidance concerning requirements of the 408(b)(2) regulation that relate to the participant-level disclosure regulation.

Citing Apprenticeship and Training Plans for using Plan Assets for Graduation Ceremonies and Program Marketing

Guidance on when the use of plan assets by apprenticeship and training plans to pay for graduation ceremonies and for advertising expenses violates ERISA's exclusive purpose and fiduciary duty requirements.