Compliance Corner

Retirement Updates

IRS Updates Determination Letter and Private Letter Ruling Procedures

January 18, 2023

On January 3, 2023, the IRS released Revenue Procedure (Rev. Proc.) 2023-4, which outlines the procedures for requesting determination letters and private letter rulings from the IRS for qualified retirement plans. Rev. Proc. 2023-4, which is published in Internal Revenue Bulletin 2023-01, is a general update to the information previously provided in Rev. Proc. 2022-4. Determination letters indicate whether the IRS finds the form of an employer’s employee benefit plan document meets the necessary qualification requirements. Private letter rulings interpret and apply the Internal Revenue Code to a set of facts presented by a taxpayer.

In addition to minor non-substantive changes, the updates include the following:

  • Sections 6, 8, 9, 10, 11, 19, and 20 and Appendix B were revised to provide the procedures for obtaining a determination letter with respect to a Section 403(b) individually designed plan, beginning June 1, 2023. Appendix A adds user fees for these submissions. (As reported in our December 6, 2022, article, the determination letter program has expanded availability to individually designed Section 403(b) plans.)
  • Sections 6.02 and 16 are revised to provide that Form 5307, Application for Determination for Adopters of Modified Nonstandardized Pre-Approved Plans, and Form 5316, Application for Group or Pooled Trust Ruling, may be submitted electronically beginning June 1, 2023, and must be submitted electronically beginning July 1, 2023, including payment of the user fee.
  • Sections 3 and 31 and Appendix A reflect the temporary suspension of the opinion letter program for prototype IRAs (traditional, Roth and SIMPLE IRAs), SEPs (including salary reduction SEPs (SARSEPs)), and SIMPLE IRA plans.
  • Section 9.02 reflects changes to the scope of determination letters.
  • Appendix A has been modified to increase certain user fees.
  • A new Appendix G has been added, which provides a checklist for applications for nonbank trustee approval letters.

Retirement plan sponsors who may apply for a determination letter or request a private letter ruling should familiarize themselves with this updated guidance.

Internal Revenue Bulletin: 2023-01 »