IRS Logo
Print - Click this link to Print this page

Master and Prototype Plan Sponsors - Responsibilities and Tips - Tip #6

6. Ensure adopting employers only choose approved elective plan provisions and stay within approved parameters

Tip

Potential Concerns

Ensure adopting employers only choose approved elective plan provisions and stay within approved parameters

  • Adopting employer writes in choices that deviate from the pre-approved language in the adoption agreement
  • Adopting employer completes a fill-in provision with language that strays beyond the parameters of the pre-approved plan
  • Adopting employer crosses out plan or trust language and adds new language

We extensively review an M&P plan document and elective provisions based on the List of Required Modifications before issuing an opinion letter. Adopting employers may not include elective plan provisions that have not been pre-approved as part of the opinion letter as this may cause their plan to become an individually-designed plan and the employer may no longer be able to rely on the opinion letter issued to the pre-approved M&P plan. 

An adopting employer may only choose from options offered in the adoption agreement (for example, for vesting, choose the 3-year vesting schedule versus full and immediate vesting schedule) or complete the blank or fill-in provisions with provisions that don’t violate plan qualification requirements or significantly deviate from the plan’s pre-approved language.

Back to chart

Page Last Reviewed or Updated: 13-Mar-2014