PLAN REPORTING ACTION ITEMS
FOR PLANS SUBJECT TO ERISA
Review this important information about your plan's year-end reports. The checklist will help you identify actions you need to take.
All Plans Subject to ERISA
- √ Know your plan’s Form 5500 filing schedule – get organized and get started early.
- √ Register for Administrator Web Access
- √ Request your audit sample selection at least 30 days prior to your Form 5500 filing deadline.
- √ Authorize your auditor to have access to the year-end reports for your plans
- √ Refer to the Plan Sponsor Reporting & Audit Guide – 2009 Plan Year Reporting for Qualified and 403(b) Plans (PDF)
- √ Review the ERISA Compliance and Fiduciary Checklist (PDF)
- √ Review what you need to know about FAS Statement No. 157, Fair Value Measurements
- √ Learn about TIAA-CREF's Audit Support
- √ Engage your organization's Finance and Accounting team
- √ Establish and document internal policies, procedures and controls
- √ Evaluate the timely remittance of employee contributions
- √ Refer to Web Resources for Additional Information
- √ Email us your auditor contact information at email@example.com to have them added to our auditor webinar invitation list
Large 403(b) Plans*
Know your plan’s Form 5500 filing schedule – get organized and get started early.
Plan Administrators are required to file Form 5500 for retirement plans subject to ERISA. Be sure you’re prepared with your plan financial reporting package from TIAA-CREF and keep on top of the due dates for your filings. Keep this guide handy for an easy reference to Form 5500 filing deadlines for your plans.
Register for Administrator Web Access
Ensure the appropriate person(s) within your organization have access to the secure Plan Administrator website. To access the plan year-end and Form 5500 reports, you and others in your organization will be required to have access to our secure Plan Administrator website. Only those who are authorized with the aforementioned role will be able to view and download the reports. Plan year-end reports will only be available through our secure Plan Administrator website. Be sure to register now if you don't already have access to the secure site—there will be no other way for you to receive your reports.
Request your audit sample selection at least 30 days prior to your Form 5500 filing deadline.
If your plan has a December 31 year-end and you have filed for an extension on Form 5558, your Form 5500 filing is due on or before October 15, 2010. TIAA-CREF will make every effort to deliver documentation of selected transactions generally needed for completion of your plan's audit. PLEASE BE SURE YOUR AUDITOR IDENTIFIES THE TRANSACTION SAMPLES NEEDED AND YOU REQUEST YOUR SAMPLE SELECTION BY SEPTEMBER 15 at the latest in order for TIAA-CREF to fulfill the request and for you to meet your filing due date. Requests for transaction samples after September 15 may delay processing and could impact your filing, potentially resulting in penalties to the plan. Get more information and a request form at the Audit Support Toolkit.
Authorize your auditor to have access to the year-end reports for your plans.
Upon your authorization, auditors are able to view and download year-end reports directly from the secure website. To authorize auditor access, complete the TIAA-CREF Online Auditor/Access Authorization/Change Form (PDF). You can use this form to add or delete online access for your auditors.
Refer to the Plan Sponsor Reporting & Audit Guide
The TIAA-CREF 2009 Plan Sponsor Reporting & Audit Guide (the "Guide") provides information on reporting and disclosure requirements for clients with qualified and 403(b) plans.
The Guide describes and provides a complete sample of the annual reports that TIAA-CREF will provide to you for your plans as well as reporting information related to TIAA-CREF's investment products. The Guide also includes a section that cross-references our financial reports to the applicable lines of the Form 5500 and related schedules.
Access a copy of the Guide:
Provide a copy of the Guide to your auditors to increase their understanding of the reporting package and TIAA-CREF's products.
TIAA-CREF Audit Support
If your plan is a large plan subject to the audit requirement, TIAA-CREF will provide assistance in support of the independent audit. If requested, TIAA-CREF will provide supporting documentation for a sampling of specified transactional categories limited to the lesser of 25 transactions or 10% of the transaction category population. In addition, TIAA-CREF will provide you and your auditors with TIAA-CREF's Statement on Auditing Standards No. 70 (SAS 70) Type II report detailing information about the design and operation of controls we have in place. Our auditor provided an unqualified opinion related to both the design and operating effectiveness of TIAA-CREF's controls in the December 2008 and June 2009 SAS70 reports for both 403(b) and qualified plans .You will be able to review these on the secure Plan Administrator website.
- Department of Labor (DOL) website
- The DOL provides electronic filing requirement on their website: http://www.efast.dol.gov
- 403(b) Plan Sponsor Resource Center of the AICPA's Employee Benefit Plan Audit Quality Center
Look for an e-mail from TIAA-CREF notifying you that your plan year-end reports are available on the secure Administrator website.
Plan year-end reports for your 403(b) plans will be available from TIAA-CREF for 2008 plan years (plan years beginning in 2008). For plans with a calendar year-end, distribution of plan-year-end reports began in October 2009. We will certify the Schedule of Assets Held for Investment pursuant to 29 CFR 2520.103-5(c) as of the end of the plan year (e.g., December 31, 2008, for a calendar year plan). TIAA-CREF has prepared this certification to provide your auditors with a certified opening asset balance for the beginning of the 2009 plan year (e.g., January 1, 2009, for a calendar year plan).
You will receive an email from TIAA-CREF notifying you when your reports are available to access from the secure Plan Administrator website. There will also be a notification that the reports are available when you sign onto the secure website.
Please contact your TIAA-CREF Liaison or Managing Consultant if you have questions. If you are served exclusively by the Administrator Telephone Center, please call 888 842-7782, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. (ET), Monday through Friday.
- "Selecting an Auditor for Your Employee Benefit Plan," from the US Department of Labor
- "Audit Quality and Auditor Selection," from the AICPA
- "Accounting & Auditing Resource Centers" from the AICPA
** For plan years beginning in 2009, large 403(b) plans subject to ERISA will generally be required to have an independent audit of its financial statements. A large plan is defined as one having 100 or more participants (active and inactive) as of the beginning of the plan year (certain exceptions may apply).