DOL Announces 2022 Inflation Adjustments for Civil Penalties

The Department of Labor has published in the Federal Register several inflation-adjusted penalty amounts for certain failures associated with qualified retirement plans.

  • Per day, for failure to properly file a plan annual report (Form 5500 series); rises from $2,259 to $2,400
  • Per day, for failure to properly provide a plan black-out notice, or notice of right to divest employer securities (each recipient being a separate failure); rises from $143 to $152
  • Per day, for failure to provide DOL-requested documents; increases from $161 to $171 (not to exceed $1,613 per request)
  • Failure to properly provide benefit statements and maintain records vis-à-vis former participants and beneficiaries; rises from $31 to $33 per required statement
  • Failure of a fiduciary to comply with the prohibition on certain types of distributions from defined benefit pension plans with certain liquidity shortfalls; maximum penalty rises from $17,416 to $18,500 (penalty will be the amount of any distribution, if less)

Additionally, penalty amounts for certain failures associated with group health plans have been updated as follows.

  • Failure to provide the Summary of Benefits and Coverage (“SBC”) penalty rises from $1,190 to $1,264 per failure
  • Failure to comply with the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA), and failure to comply with disclosure requirements under Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) rises from $120 to $127 per participant, per day
  • Failure to meet filing requirements for multiple employer welfare arrangements (MEWA) increases from $1,644 to $1,746 per day

These adjustments for 2022 are made under the authority of the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act and are in effect for any of the described penalties that are assessed after January 15, 2022.