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Annual Deadlines

Qualified retirement plans have many recurring deadlines throughout each plan year. It is important to know the deadlines for different government filings, participant notices, plan amendments, contributions, and other actions required of the plan sponsor. Missing these deadlines can have significant consequences.

The following table summarizes basic deadlines that are approaching for defined benefit pension plans (DB) and/or defined contribution plans (DC). This table is for informational purposes only and may not be comprehensive under all circumstances. Other deadlines may apply under other situations (such as a short plan year or if your plan has a plan year different from the fiscal year).

To determine which basic deadlines apply to your plan, find the month and day that corresponds to the end of your plan’s year in the first column of the table below and read across to see which deadlines are approaching in the next two months. More than one deadline may apply in the same month and some deadlines shown may not apply to your plan.

The following upcoming deadline does not depend on a plan’s plan year:

April 15, 2021 – Corrective distribution of 402(g) excess deferrals for 2020 must be made to applicable participants.

Plan Year End This Month (April) Next Month (May)
January 31 Corrective Distributions for Failed 2020 Plan Year ADP/ACP test 2020 AFN to Participants (DB only – 100 or more participants)
  4th Month 2021 AFTAP Certification (DB only)  
February 28 4th Quarter 2020 Plan Year Periodic Benefit Statement (DC only) Corrective Distributions for Failed 2020 Plan Year ADP/ACP test
    4th Month 2021 AFTAP Certification (DB only)
March 31   4th Quarter 2020 Plan Year Periodic Benefit Statement (DC only)
April 30 2019 SAR to Participants (w/ extension)  
  New Plan or Discretionary Amendment Adoption for 2020 Plan Year  
  Correction of Failed 2020 Plan Year ADP/ACP Test  
  Safe Harbor Notice to Participants for 2021 Plan Year  
May 31 3rd Quarter 2020 Plan Year Periodic Benefit Statement (DC only) 2019 SAR to Participants (w/ extension)
    New Plan or Discretionary Amendment Adoption for 2020 Plan Year
    Correction of Failed 2020 Plan Year ADP/ACP Test
    Safe Harbor Notice to Participants for 2021 Plan Year
June 30 2019 Form 5500 (w/ extension) 3rd Quarter 2020 Plan Year Periodic Benefit Statement (DC only)
  2019 AFN to Participants (DB only – less than 100 participants)* Benefit Restriction Notice to Participants (DB only – assuming 2020 AFTAP not yet certified by actuary)
  2020 PBGC Comprehensive Premium Filing (DB only)  
July 31 Contribution for 2019 Plan Year 2019 Form 5500 (w/ extension)
  2019 SAR to Participants (w/o extension) 2019 AFN to Participants (DB only – less than 100 participants)*
  10th Month 2020 AFTAP Certification (DB only) 2020 PBGC Comprehensive Premium Filing (DB only)
    Benefit Restriction Notice to Participants (DB only – assuming 2020 AFTAP not yet certified by actuary)
August 31 2nd Quarter 2020 Plan Year Periodic Benefit Statement (DC only) Contribution for 2019 Plan Year
    2019 SAR to Participants (w/o extension)
    10th Month 2020 AFTAP Certification (DB only)
September 30 2019 Form 5500 (w/o extension) 2nd Quarter 2020 Plan Year Periodic Benefit Statement (DC only)
October 31   2019 Form 5500 (w/o extension)
November 30 1st Quarter 2020 Plan Year Periodic Benefit Statement (DC only)  
December 31 2020 AFN to Participants (DB only – 100 or more participants) 1st Quarter 2021 Plan Year Periodic Benefit Statement (DC only)

*AFN due by Form 5500 filing date, regardless of available extended due date.