ERISA Employee Benefit Plan Audits

Bringing Expertise to Your Employee Benefit Plan Audits

Your employees are one of your most important assets, and retirement and pension plans are among your employees’ biggest concerns. The regulatory and financial complexities of this important aspect of any organization can be overwhelming and extremely costly.

We understand that the employee benefits industry requires specialized expertise beyond that of the corporate auditor.

Snyder Cohn Advantages

  • We have a dedicated ERISA audit practice whose team members have overseen hundreds of plan audits, including 401(k), profit sharing, pension, ESOP, health and welfare and 403(b) plans.
  • Snyder Cohn is a member of the AICPA’s Employee Benefit Plan Audit Quality Center (EBPAQC). The Center’s mission is to promote the quality of employee benefit audits by providing guidance on current regulatory developments, best practices and technical updates.
  • Our partners and senior staff are actively involved in each ERISA audit engagement. You will see the same people on your audit year after year. Your plan will not be a training ground for new or untrained staff.
  • We have a significant depth and breadth of knowledge related to ERISA audits. Our audit team members are highly trained in the latest audit and ERISA regulations. We attend both of the major AICPA Employee Benefit Plan conferences that are presented each year.
  • We maintain contacts at the DOL and can resolve reporting issues directly with the decision makers.
  • Because we are proactive in managing our ERISA audits, we make sure we work efficiently, our audit procedures are thorough, and have tasks completed ahead of regulatory deadlines.
  • We work with a wide variety of plan administrators and fund managers. We speak their language and can communicate directly with them when questions arise.
  • Because we have staff dedicated to benefit plan audits, your work is their most important priority.
  • We take pride in providing you a professional product.

Your Obligation as a Retirement Plan Administrator

  • Those charged with governance of a retirement plan (i.e. plan administrator) have a fiduciary responsibility to monitor the plan and make sure the plan is in compliance with the rules and regulations set forth by the Department of Labor.
  • Responsibilities of the plan fiduciary include:
    • Strictly following the plan document.
    • Carefully selecting and using third party administrators (custodian, record keeper)
    • Holding regular meetings with a select group of individuals who oversee the plan and taking appropriate detailed minutes of those meetings
    • Documenting in writing all decisions made regarding the plan
    • Regularly reviewing the performance of all investments and documenting all investment decisions
    • Communicating all necessary plan changes to the participants
  • If the fiduciary responsibilities above are not followed, the plan fiduciary may be potentially liable to restore any losses to the plan or to restore any profits made through the improper use of the plan’s assets resulting from their actions.
  • Generally, for plans that have 100 or more participants (meaning 100 or more employees who are eligible to participate in the plan), the plan fiduciary is required to file a timely Form 5500, with audited financial statements attached, to the Department of Labor.

Let us assist you with what we do best – applying our knowledge and expertise in navigating the increased complexity of employee benefit plan auditing. Please feel free to reach out to any of our ERISA team leaders:

Barbara Kromer, Partner

Kristin Papa, Manager

Christopher Crouthamel, Supervising Senior

Click here to see a list of useful ERISA resources