Keeping an Eye on Your 401(k) Service Providers

Towards the end of last year there were several news stories covering the FBI’s raid of Vantage Benefits Administrators, Inc., a Dallas-based third-party administrator. Since that raid, there have been lawsuits brought by plan sponsors filed against Vantage, Vantage’s President Jeff Richie and his wife, advisors who referred the plan sponsors to Vantage, and Matrix Trust Company, who served as trustee for several of these plan sponsors.

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An Ideal Fit

Working at PriceKubecka as an audit intern has been an amazing experience. I knew when I was searching for an internship that I didn’t want to go the typical route and intern with a Big Four firm. I wanted to work at a firm that was innovating, as well as one where I could make an impact and see the bigger picture of the firm. When I met PK at my school’s career fair, I could feel their enthusiasm and I knew they were the firm I wanted to work for.

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Your company needs a 401(k) audit. What now?

The first time your 401(k) plan is audited can be difficult, confusing and time consuming, but this guide should relieve some of the stress. You may feel like this audit is being forced on you, and you’d be right - the Department of Labor (DOL) requires that a plan be audited when it has more than 100 eligible participants on the first day of the plan year. So now that your plan needs an audit, allow me to help prepare you for what’s next.

1. Hire the right auditor

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R&D Tax Credit Studies: What is the Permitted Purpose test and why does it matter?

Many people hear about all the ‘work’ associated with completing a research and development (R&D) tax credit study, but the reality is that the savings associated with this credit make it more than worth it, which you can read about in a prior blog. Although, to receive all these benefits, your company must pass four qualifying tests.

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A Double Edged Sword: Automatic 401(k) Enrollment Features

Have you recently thought about adding auto-enrollment to your company’s 401(k) plan? If so, there are a few things to be aware of before deciding.

First, what does auto-enrollment mean to the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL)?

According to the DOL, automatic enrollment permits you to act on your employees’ behalf by helping them build their retirement savings with pre-tax employee contributions, and matching contributions from you, the employer. Automatic enrollment can take different forms:

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The Benefits of a Safe Harbor Plan for Business Owners

A successful business owner knows that finding and retaining top talent is one of the keys to running a successful business. Providing valuable fringe benefits, such as a 401(k) match, is a great way to attract talent. However, wouldn’t it also be nice to have some of that same benefit go to the business owner?

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R&D Tax Credit for Architects: Let the Government Pay You for Your Great Designs

The Research and Development (R&D) tax credit is often thought of as a credit created for research done by scientists with white lab coats in a laboratory.  This is simply not true.  In 2003, the IRS relaxed the rules for claiming the credit which opened it up to a wide range of industries, including architecture firms.

How does getting a significant tax credit for something that you already do sound?

Generally, architecture firms spend more than half of their time on activities that qualify as R&D expenses.  These activities include:

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401(k) Plan Sponsor Pitfall #2: Not Following the Plan Document

In auditing 401(k) plans, one of the most common problems seen is the plan sponsor’s failure to follow the terms of the plan document. This happens for a myriad of reasons, ranging from not understanding the document to not having enough experience with 401(k) plans to understand that there even is a document that governs the operations and defines important terms.

There are two issues that arise because of this overall problem: reporting incorrect eligible compensation for compliance testing and incorrect calculation of eligibility and entry dates.

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Is the Research and Development (R&D) Tax Credit Worth the Hassle?

In a world where technology reigns supreme, more people than ever could qualify for the research and development tax credit. Under section 41 of the Internal Revenue Code, companies that work in the world of technology, have a qualified purpose, engage in elimination of uncertainty, and utilize experimentation, may be eligible for the R&D tax credit. With the recent broadening of the qualifying parameters most technology, engineering and architecture companies can take advantage of this credit.

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The PriceKubecka Way!

Everything started when I was at University of Texas at the Dallas Fall Career Fair. I was standing in line for Weaver to see if they could give me a shot to be one of their interns. As time went by, I looked over my shoulder and there it was: the PriceKubecka booth. Before I talked to PK, I had already spoken with other firms. To be completely honest the other firms didn’t appeal to me, because of how they answered my questions. All they said was “turn in your resume and we will get back to you” and didn’t elaborate on certain questions as I had hoped.

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