CRI can help you develop benefit plans

EBP-Chart2_03CRI’s benefit plan expertise puts us at the top of the class.

Nearly all businesses today have a benefit plan, with the most recent DOL statistics totaling 638,390 defined contribution retirement plans nationally. Employer-sponsored plans, the most popular type, provide nearly 80% of full-time workers access and boast a participation rate of 80+%. With this level of popularity comes an increase in regulatory scrutiny—and the need for independent advisors who have done their homework and are familiar with the rules to support the plan sponsor.

Retirement plans possess many complex components: custodians, trustees, trading platforms, compliance administration, record keeping, and investments. CRI provides a comprehensive, one-stop shop for employee benefit plan planning and administration services. Meanwhile, benefit plans with more than 100 eligible participants are generally required to have an audit performed in accordance with the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA). The DOL repeatedly states that it believes benefit plan audits require specialization and technical expertise – and cites auditor inexperience as one of the most common causes of benefit plan audit deficiencies.

CRI clients benefit from a streamlined approach delivered with open communication and efficient coordination resulting in accurate reporting and compliance. We deliver benefit plan services to smaller private companies, private and public middle market companies, and larger public companies. Since CRI is registered as a Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) firm, we also perform audits of Forms 11-K filed with the SEC.

Benefit Plan News Flash

With a volume of benefit plan audits in the top 1% of CPA firms nationally, CRI, an AICPA’s Employee Benefit Plan Audit Quality Center (EBPAQC) member, is poised to meet these requirements. Our voluntary membership subjects our team to additional benefit plan training requirements and demonstrates our commitment to quality services.

Vandy Davis, Vice President and Corporate Controller Flowers Foods
“We’ve worked with a Big 4 accounting firm for many years but several years ago made a decision to change service providers for the majority of our employee benefit plan audits. CRI’s team worked with us to make the transition from the Big 4 firm to their team as smooth as possible. We started by moving 2 plans to CRI’s team. Now the steady core team that they’ve maintained performs the audits and tax returns for 8 plans. We have been extremely pleased with the transition, the professionalism and client service of our recurring team.”

2017 Retirement Plan Contribution Limits

Use the chart below to determine how much you can add to your benefit plans this year.
Type of LimitationPlan Limit
Annual Benefit for Defined Benefit Plans$215,000
Catch-Up Contributions to 401(k), 403(b), 457(b)(2) And 457(c)(1) Plans$6,000
Catch-up Contributions to IRAs$1,000
Catch-up Contributions to SIMPLEs$3,000
Compensation for Benefit Purposes for Qualified Plans and Simplified Employee Pension Plans (SEPs)$270,000
Contributions to Defined Contribution Plans$54,000
Contributions to IRAs$5,500
Contributions to Savings Incentive Match Plans for Employees of Small Employers (SIMPLEs)$12,500
Elective Deferrals to 401(k), 403(b), 457(b)(2) And 457(c)(1) Plans$18,000
Highly Compensated Employee Threshold$120,000
Minimum Compensation for SEP Coverage$600

Pass the Benefit Plan Discrimination Test

Hardship Withdrawals and Plan Loans

Benefit Plan Fiduciary Responsibilities

Straight Talk

Translating technical jargon into a plain English “text.”
How can I streamline the benefit plan audit process for my team?
We recommend regularly reviewing your HR files to check for consistency and completeness, as well as working with your bank or trust to understand fair values of investments. Additionally, gather research and any service organization control (SOC) reports from your vendors (e.g. third-party administrators, payroll vendors) prior to the audit.
Great—we will absolutely follow those recommendations. Are there any specific best practices regarding working with our benefit plan audit firm?
Definitely be sure that you and your firm are utilizing a secure portal for file transfers to maintain privacy. And we strongly advise an early communication and planning meeting with your benefit plan audit firm.

Solution Simplified

Down-to-earth descriptions of our services.

Employee Benefit Plan Audits

A national leader in providing employee benefit plan audits, CRI performs 300+ audits annually for plans ranging in participant size from 100 to thousands. We deliver value-driven, customized audit solutions for plan types including:

  • defined benefit plans—including Taft-Hartley plans,
  • defined contribution plans—including 401k and 403b,
  • employee stock ownership plans (ESOPs),
  • health and welfare plans, and
  • profit-sharing plans.

Employee Benefit Plan Advisory

We manage the design, implementation, and administration for all types of retirement plans. These include defined contribution type plans – such as 401(k) plans and 403(b) plans – and defined benefit plans. Additionally, we provide record-keeping and third-party administration (TPA) services for all types of retirement plans.

CRI provides suggestions for reducing retirement plan costs and increasing benefits by leveraging our federal regulation expertise to enhance benefits for both the employer and plan participants. Meanwhile, we independently design your plan while creating documents and an administration guide to assist the plan sponsor with IRS and DOL compliance. We also provide company and participant reports, as well as regular plan review, to ensure you are taking full advantage of what the law allows.

Employee Benefit Plan Taxes

CRI’s experience with the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA), along with our proactive client service approach, allows us to meet your timelines for filing your Form(s) 5500 while also accurately depicting your plan operations.