The Internal Revenue Service issued Revenue Procedure 2013-22 yesterday (March 28, 2013).  The Revenue Procedure describes the Service’s new procedure for issuing opinion letters and advisory letters for prototype and volume-submitter § 403(b) plans; it revises the proposed procedure that was released four years ago in Announcement 2009-34.  As part of the proposed procedure, the Service indicated that it intended to offer a similar procedure for individually-designed § 403(b) plans.  Since then, the Service has changed course and determined that it is not feasible for it to offer determination letters for individually-designed § 403(b) plans at this time, given the Service’s limited resources.  Although prototype and volume submitter plans can be convenient for employers to adopt initially, as Julie Edmond explained in the March 29th edition of Tax Notes Today, such plans “often lack the flexibility to accommodate the changing demographics of the workforce or unexpected changes in the organization and can quickly reach a point where they do not really work for the employer.”  Accordingly, even though the Service does not plan to issue determination letters for individually-designed plans any time soon, plan sponsors of § 403(b) plans may be better served over the long run by using individually-designed plans — which allow plan sponsors to consider the specific needs of their employees and their organization, and to adapt as staffing and economic factors change.  Revenue Procedure 2013-22 is scheduled for publication on April 29, 2013 in Internal Revenue Bulletin 2013-18.

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Photo of Julie Edmond Julie Edmond

Julie Edmond has extensive experience counseling and litigating in the employee benefits area, including traditional defined benefit, cash balance, 401(k), profit-sharing and money purchase pension plans; executive compensation and § 409A; § 403(b) plans, § 457 plans and other plans for tax-exempt organizations…

Julie Edmond has extensive experience counseling and litigating in the employee benefits area, including traditional defined benefit, cash balance, 401(k), profit-sharing and money purchase pension plans; executive compensation and § 409A; § 403(b) plans, § 457 plans and other plans for tax-exempt organizations; ESOPs; cafeteria plans; VEBAs and self-insured medical plans and other welfare plans.  Her experience includes plan selection, formulation and drafting, regulatory compliance, audits, voluntary compliance, prohibited transactions and fiduciary duty requirements, separate line of business issues, use and handling of employee benefits and benefit plans in corporate transactions, and ERISA litigation.

Photo of Kendra L. Roberson Kendra L. Roberson

Kendra Roberson has experience advising clients on a broad spectrum of employee benefits matters including tax-qualified retirement plans, employee stock ownership plans, executive compensation arrangements, stock option and other equity-based compensation plans, cafeteria plans, VEBAs, self-insured medical plans, and other health and welfare…

Kendra Roberson has experience advising clients on a broad spectrum of employee benefits matters including tax-qualified retirement plans, employee stock ownership plans, executive compensation arrangements, stock option and other equity-based compensation plans, cafeteria plans, VEBAs, self-insured medical plans, and other health and welfare plans.  Her experience includes plan design and drafting, regulatory compliance, ERISA litigation, and handling employee benefits matters and plans in corporate transactions.  In addition, Ms. Roberson has extensive experience advising employers and state governments on compliance with the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (“PPACA”).