An employer that adopts a 403(b) pre-approved plan generally has assurance that its plan document complies with IRC Section 403(b). Please note that the IRS doesn’t intend to establish a determination letter program for individually designed 403(b) plans at this time.
Mandatory plan provisions
Revenue Procedure 2013-22 lists mandatory provisions for all 403(b) pre-approved plans, and additional required provisions for 403(b) prototype plans and for 403(b)(9) plans.
To draft 403(b) pre-approved plans, sponsors can use:
- Section 403(b) Pre-approved Plans Sample Plan Provisions and Information Package
- Revenue Procedure 2007-71 - sample plan language for public school 403(b) plans
403(b) pre-approved plan sponsor’s duties
Generally, a pre-approved plan sponsor must:
- keep a written record of the eligible employers who adopted its plan and if requested by IRS, provide their names, addresses and EINs (this requirement doesn't apply to a church-related organization sponsoring a pre-approved plan 403(b)(9) retirement income account); and
- keep the plan approved by:
- amending the plan for law changes;
- applying for a new opinion or advisory letter when required;
- informing about and providing each adopting employer all restated plans, amendments, and opinion or advisory letters; and
- complying with all required notice procedures.
Scope of an opinion or advisory letter
IRS will issue a favorable opinion or advisory letter to a pre-approved 403(b) plan if the submitted plan meets the requirements of IRC Section 403(b). A favorable opinion or advisory letter won’t cover whether the plan is subject to, or satisfies, any ERISA requirements, any investment arrangement terms or other documents incorporated by reference.