The GAO’s recommended fixesNews added by Benefits Pro on July 17, 2014

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Joined: September 07, 2011

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By Nick Thornton

To improve the “usefulness, reliability and comparability” of Form 5500 data, the GAO recommended the secretaries of DOL and Treasury, and the director of PBGC consider the following:

• revise Schedule H plan asset categories to better match current investment vehicles and provide more transparency into plan investments;

• revise the Schedule of Assets attachments to create a standard searchable format;

• develop a central repository for EIN and PN numbers for filers and service providers to improve the comparability of form data across filings;

• clarify Schedule C instructions for direct, eligible indirect, and reportable indirect compensation so plan fees are reported more consistently and … better align(ed) with the 408(b)(2) fee disclosures; and

• simplify and clarify Schedule C service provider codes to increase reporting consistency.

The agency also recommended that Congress consider giving the Department of the Treasury the authority to require that the Form 5500 series be filed electronically.

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