Bloomberg Law quoted McGuireWoods Richmond associate Robert Wynne in an Aug. 11, 2022, article discussing a pilot program to reduce the examination workload on workplace benefit plan professionals and agency personnel.
Under the program, about 100 U.S. employee benefit plans have received pre-audit compliance letters from the Internal Revenue Service with a 90-day window to fix mistakes in plan design, administration or documentation before regulators launch formal audits or close their case files. The window of opportunity is a welcome relief for the hundreds of private-sector benefit plans the IRS investigates each year, Bloomberg Law noted.
Although self-identified corrections are not new, until recently they were available only to employers not already tagged for an audit. “Generally, once you’re under the microscope, you kind of had to wait and see what the IRS uncovered,” Wynne said.
According to the article, the pilot program may significantly cut the number of benefit plan audits the IRS performs. “For years now, the IRS has been inundated with outstanding benefits-related work,” Wynne said. “I think this pilot program is something that comes out of that pressure as well.”