Independent Actuaries Blog Category: Plan Design

Roth Opportunities in Qualified Plans

Business owners who are contributing to a Roth IRA (or are considering if they should) can realize a greater impact with the Roth features in a 401(k) plan. 401(k) plans can allow participants to defer salary as a Roth contribution … Continue reading

What Can You and Jeb Bush Have in Common?

A CPA acquaintance of mine recently forwarded this article to me (I had missed it when it was first published). The article reports that GOP presidential candidate Jeb Bush contributed an average of $350,000 per year into a defined benefit pension plan, … Continue reading

Building Highways through Pension Funding Relief

As of today, it looks like the much debated H.R. 5021 – Highway and Transportation Funding Act of 2014 is finally on the brink of becoming law. What does this have to do with retirement plans? The expenditures in the … Continue reading

IRS Updates its 401(k) Plan Fix-It Guide

The IRS has updated its 401(k) Plan Fix-It Guide. You can find the Guide at While the Guide’s 52 pages can seem intimidating, the first three pages contain a chart of the most common errors in plan operation. Review … Continue reading

Nondiscrimination Relief – A Step in the Right Direction

The IRS recently released Notice 2014-5, Temporary Nondiscrimination Relief for Closed Defined Benefit Plans and Request for Comments. The temporary relief provided in the Notice is nice, but not applicable for most of our small or mid-sized business owner clients. … Continue reading

Update: What does the Supreme Court’s DOMA ruling mean for qualified defined benefit plans?

On August 29, 2013, the IRS issued Revenue Ruling 2013-17, which addresses some, but not all, of the questions relating to the Supreme Court decision which struck down section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) earlier this year. … Continue reading

DB Plans Can Address Small Business Owners’ Goals

This recent article on about retirement planning for small businesses has some good advice. One important thing missing, though, is how well a defined benefit (DB) plan can address common small business owners’ goals in several ways.   A DB plan … Continue reading

Breaking news! Save for retirement in 10 years (or less)!

Defined benefit retirement plans for small businesses are often overlooked or misunderstood. We rarely see them accurately portrayed or even mentioned in the main stream media.  Even the financial writer for the New York Times who wrote an article on … Continue reading

IRS Announces Pension Plan Limits for 2013

2013 is around the corner, and that means updated pension plan limitations. Last week, the IRS announced the 2013 limits, many of which will increase in 2013 due to the increase in the cost of living index. Some of the … Continue reading

Independent Actuaries, Inc. Expands From Portland to Austin- Both Cities Keeping It Weird

From Mount Hood, to Cannon Beach, I enjoyed exploring Oregon for the five years I lived there. If there is one thing I learned after walking up and down Mississippi Ave during the Mississippi St Fair, running from Mt. Hood … Continue reading