Relief All Around: IRS Expands Required Plan Amendment Deadline Extensions

On September 26, 2022, the IRS published Notice 2022-45, extending the deadline for required retirement plan amendments associated with qualifying coronavirus-related and disaster-relief distributions under Section 2202 of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) and Section 302 of Title III of the Taxpayer Certainty and Disaster Tax Relief Act of 2020 (Relief Act).

Notice 2022-45 follows Notice 2022-33, released in August, which extended the deadline for plan amendments under Section 2203 the CARES Act, the Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement Act of 2019 (SECURE Act), and Section 104 of the Bipartisan American Miners Act of 2019 (Miners Act). Information on Notice 2022-33 can be found here.

The new deadlines for plan amendments listed in both Notice 2022-45 and Notice 2022-33 are as follows:

  • Non-governmental qualified plans, 403(b) plans, and IRAs: December 31, 2025;
  • Governmental qualified plans and public school 403(b) plans: 90 days after the close of the third regular legislative session of the legislative body with the authority to amend the plan that begins after December 31, 2023; and
  • Governmental 457(b) plans: the later of 90 days after the close of the third regular legislative session of the legislative body with the authority to amend the plan that begins after December 31, 2023, or if applicable, the first day of the first plan year beginning more than 180 days after the date of notification by the IRS that the plan was administered inconsistent with Code section 457(b).

Notice 2022-45 is meant to extend the deadline for amendments not extended under previous guidance. The extensions are:

  • CARES Act: amendments relating to coronavirus-related distributions and plan loan relief; and
  • Relief Act: amendments relating to qualified disaster distributions.

Notice 2022-33 extended the deadline for the following amendments:

  • CARES Act: amendments relating to the 2020 relief for required minimum distributions;
  • SECURE Act: amendments relating to required minimum distributions and qualified birth or adoption distributions; and
  • Miners Act: amendments relating to changes for distributions from defined benefit plans and governmental 457(b) plans.

Notice 2022-45 confirms that amendments for the CARES Act and any related regulations adopted by the extended deadline will receive anti-cutback relief.

Note that neither notice mentions tax-exempt employer-sponsored 457(b) plans.  As such, to the extent these plans need to be amended as described above, absent further guidance such amendments remain subject to the December 31, 2022 deadline.

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