Quarterly Plan Sponsor Calendar


  • Audit third-quarter payroll and plan deposit dates to ensure compliance with the DOL’s rules regarding timely deposit of participant contributions and loan repayments.

  • Verify that employees who became eligible for the plan between July 1 and September 30 received and returned an enrollment form. Follow up on forms that were not returned.

  • For calendar-year safe harbor plans, issue the required notice to employees during October or November (within 30–90 days of the beginning of the plan year to which the safe harbor will apply). Also, within the same period, distribute the appropriate notice if the plan features an Eligible Automatic Contribution Agreement, Qualified Automatic Contribution Agreement, and/or Qualified Default Investment Alternative.


  • Prepare to issue an announcement to employees to publicize the plan’s advantages and benefits, along with any plan changes taking effect in January.

  • Check current editions of enrollment materials, fund prospectuses, and other plan information available to employees to ensure that they are up to date.

  • Within 45 days of the end of the previous quarter, provide quarterly benefit/disclosure statement and statement of plan fees and expenses actually charged to individual plan accounts during the prior quarter.

  • Conduct a campaign to encourage participants to review and, if necessary, update their mailing addresses to ensure that they receive Form 1099-R, which will be mailed in January for reportable plan transactions.


  • Prepare to send year-end payroll and updated census data to the plan’s recordkeeper in January for year-end compliance testing (for calendar-year plans).

  • Verify that participants who terminated during the second half of the year selected a distribution option for their account balance and returned the necessary form.

  • Review plan operations to determine if any ERISA or tax-qualification violations occurred during the year and if using an Internal Revenue Service or DOL self-correction program would be appropriate.

Consult your plan’s financial, legal, or tax advisor regarding these and other items that may apply to your plan.