In order for you to meet IRS “universal availability” rules, it is essential for you to effectively communicate your 403(b) program to your workforce. The “universal availability” rule states that if you permit one employee to elect to defer salary into your 403(b) plan, then you must extend this offer to all employees.
Certain employees, however, may be excluded from the plan and not cause the plan to violate this rule:
- Employees who will contribute $200 or less annually;
- Employees who participate in a 401(k) or 457 plan, or in another 403(b) plan that you maintain;
- Non-resident aliens;
- Employees who worked less than 1,000 hours and or new employees expected to work less than 1,000 hours annually (subject to certain limitations); and
- Students performing services described in section 3121(b)(10) (subject to certain limitations).
In addition to permitting eligible employees to make elective deferrals into the plan, these employees must be informed of their right to do so. Employees must also be provided a meaningful opportunity to make and change their elections during the year.
We will help you provide the necessary communications to your employees to demonstrate compliance with the IRS “universal availability” requirement. Our Integrated Communications Platform consists of:
- Personal on-site service
- Customized multi-tiered communications
- Additional communications services
- MetLife Representative attendance at benefit fairs
- New hire group meeting orientations
- Retiring employee seminars