Form 5500 Due Date: Avoid Serious Late Filing Penalties

form 5500 due date

Form 5500 Due Date

The Form 5500 due date for filing depends on the plan year. The general rule is that Form 5500s must be filed by the last day of the seventh month after the plan year ends, unless filing an extension. Calendar year plans have a Form 5500 due date of July 31st. Non-calendar year plans must calculate their deadline based on the end of the plan year. In either case, it is best to file Form 5500s and associated schedules long before the deadline. In fact, the IRS recommends ways to avoid filing mishaps, such as hiring a third-party filing expert (e.g., BASIC) to ensure timely and accurate filing. Employers should contract their compliance and filing partner well in advance of their filing deadline to avoid delays and provide adequate time to review welfare plans and filing requirements.

Employers can request a two-and-a-half-month extension to their filing deadline by submitting a Form 5558.

Do We Need to File?

Form 5500s must be filed for health and welfare plans subject to ERISA, meaning plans with 100 or more participants on the first day of the plan year. These plans can include benefits such as health, dental, vision, life insurance, short-term and long-term disability, Health Reimbursement Arrangements (HRA), and health FSA plans. However, not all plans with these criteria require Form 5500 filings, including plans sponsored by a government employer or church, so employers must determine which of their sponsored plans are subject to ERISA and require Form 5500 filings.

Avoid Harsh Penalties

There are separate regulations from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and the Department of Labor (DOL) that impose penalties for noncompliance. The SECURE Act, passed in 2019, multiplied the IRS late filing penalty by 10, amounting to $250 per day with a maximum penalty of $150,000 per plan year. And still, this penalty pales in comparison to the DOL penalty for late filing, which in 2022 has risen to $2,400 per day with no yearly maximum.

The risks don’t stop there. Form 5500s filed on time can still be rejected and considered late due to errors and inaccuracies. This makes working with a filing and compliance expert even more important to reduce your organizations potential penalty risk.

BASIC ERISA and 5500 Filing Solutions*

ERISA, DOL, and IRS regulations make compliance complicated for any business. BASIC navigates these complex requirements for employers to meet deadlines and save them from costly penalties and/or fines. BASIC provides complete ERISA compliance solutions, as well as individual Form 5500 services, to ensure guaranteed compliance and avoid costly fines. Depending on the organization’s plan document structure, employers can choose to have BASIC file each benefit plan with 100 or more participants separately or together as part of BASIC’s Wrap 5500 service. This service allows BASIC to pull all employee benefits into a single plan and reduce the number of required Form 5500 filings.

Don’t let late Form 5500 filing cost your business thousands in penalties. Request a proposal for BASIC’s ERISA Essentials or a stand-alone 5500 Filing today!

*Please Note: BASIC must receive all applicable setup paperwork, plan information spreadsheet, administration payment and welfare benefit plan Schedule A’s, at least 2 weeks prior to the filing deadline in order to file on time. BASIC will file an extension on a group’s behalf if the applicable information noted above is received at least 5 days prior to the filing deadline. Anything received after this deadline would require a late filing and incur BASIC’s Delinquent 5500 Filing Service for an additional one-time fee.