A defined benefit (DB) plan is a retirement plan that provides a specific benefit to eligible participants in the plan at their retirement date. The benefit paid at retirement is based on a formula in the plan document, and not on the asset performance. DB plans are usually funded entirely by the sponsoring employer, although certain plans do require employee contributions. Like other qualified plans, DB plans offer tax incentives to employers and participating employees.
Defined Benefit Plans with Watkins Ross
Defined benefit plans are subject to minimum funding requirements that must be certified by an actuary each year. It’s important that you to understand the rules/regulations governing the ongoing administration of your plan so that it remains in compliance with the IRS and other federal laws. Your team at Watkins Ross works with you to make sure you are aware of the rules and upcoming deadlines to maintain compliance and avoid costly penalties.
Many employers have previously frozen or partially frozen their defined benefit plans and are looking at additional ways to reduce their pension plan risk. These actions employ strategies to lessen a plan’s sensitivity to factors such as market swings, improvements in life expectancy, PBGC premiums, pension legislative changes, changes in tax code, and other unforeseen events.
Each approach requires careful consideration of the benefits and trade-offs such as cost, tax advantages, philosophical positions, administration, time horizon, etc. with regard to the particular pension plan and its company sponsor. Watkins Ross has the expertise and resources to assist you and your advisors in exploring how these opportunities.
At Watkins Ross, we partner with you to clearly define your objectives to make sure your plan is operating in alignment with your corporate goals. We are not only experienced in administration and consulting for defined benefit plans, but we also clearly communicate the regulations so that you can focus on the success of your business.
“First State Bank has used the services of Watkins Ross & Co since 1987. One of the best business relationships that I have experienced since joining the bank in 1978. Their support of both our original pension plan and current 401(k) has been exceptional and has made my administration of these benefits as simple as possible.
Their team is the best!”
– James C.
President and CEO
First State Bank of Decatur