Contributions of a Stated Amount

Posting by Larry Beebe, CPA

One of the subscribers to this blog asked the following:

Do you have experience with multi-employer plans where the employer contributes a stated amount per hour as written in the CBA and the contribution in excess of participant elected health and welfare benefits spills over into the retirement plan?  If so, what are some of the audit techniques you have found to be successful with these situations?

Please send me your thoughts at and I will […]

Form 5500 Schedule C – Peeling Back the Onion

Scott Price, CPA

In November 2007, the Department of Labor (DOL) amended the Form 5500 Schedule C and dramatically expand the level of disclosure required.  The revised reporting took effect for plan years beginning on or after January 1, 2009.

Background and Changes
Historically, Schedule C listed compensation paid directly to plan service providers that received compensation of at least $5,000 ($25,000 in the case of employees) and were among the 40 highest compensated providers.   The new rules requiring increased disclosure now […]

Benefit Plan Funds Should Have a Collections Policy for Payroll Audits

Posting by Ron Chandler, CPA

I recently have encountered various types of benefit plan funds that do not have a credit or over-payment policy for payroll audits or for collections in general.  I recommend that all funds have a collections policy and include credits and over-payments in that policy. Some funds within the construction industry do not allow credits for vacation, 401k or define contribution plans, but allow credits for health and welfare and defined pension plans within some time […]

Payroll Audits vs. 100% Assurance

Posting by Kurt Needles, CPA

After teaching my session on payroll auditing at the IFEBP conference, I had the opportunity to continue my discussion with the staff of a mid-central administrative office. Not only did they disagree with some of my comments, they thought I was completely wrong. The issue boiled down to “what is the function of the audit”. Is it to give the plan reasonable assurance that the contributions are being remitted correctly, or is it to give […]

Cash Payments in Lieu of Fringe Benefits


We suspect that one of our contributing employers is making cash payments to employees for work covered by the collective bargaining agreement and is not making fringe benefit payments for those payments. What can we do?
The plan should have access to the employer’s cash disbursements journal, the entity’s general ledger and the income tax return of the entity (for a partnership or corporation) or the owner (if the entity is a sole proprietorship). The cash disbursements journal should show […]

Understanding Fund Participation Rules for Owners and Shareholders

Posting by Ron Chandler, CPA

Many Funds allow owners of shareholders of a business to participate in the Fund. As the auditor, make sure that you have a full understanding of the particular Funds rules or requirements for their participation. Many small companies find it easier and more cost effective to “be part of the union” Plan, but may not be eligible because of the Fund’s rules. Recently we found a situation where the owners were participating and the Fund […]

IFEBPs “Collection Procedures Institute” Coming to Atlantic City

Posting by Larry Beebe, CPA

On September 15 and 16 in Atlantic City, New Jersey, the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans (IFEBP) will present the Collection Procedures Institute, filled with seminars, workshops and forums geared toward collections policies and procedures.  Phil Vivirito and I will be conducting a class entitled “Efficient Payroll Auditing” which will outline payroll audit programs, range of audit services, controlling audit costs, the future of payroll audits, and more.  Andy Staab, who also serves on […]

Participation Agreement Interpretation

Posting by Phil Vivirito

Situation: The participation agreement between the employer and the plan called for contributions to be made on behalf of each covered employee “up to 12 % of the employee’s yearly gross wages.” The employer considers zero percent to be part of the “up to 12%.” The plan’s payroll auditor is looking at it as if the employer is failing to make contributions and is prepared to assess the full 12% per employee. Who is correct?

Both interpretations […]

Bond Beebe in now Withum

Bond Beebe is now Withum. This powerful union expands and enhances our capabilities and services. Read More>>