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e-CFR data is current as of January 15, 2021

Title 29Subtitle BChapter XLSubchapter BPart 4006 → §4006.4


Title 29: Labor
PART 4006—PREMIUM RATES


§4006.4   Determination of unfunded vested benefits.

(a) In general. Except as provided in the exemptions and special rules under §4006.5, the amount of a plan's unfunded vested benefits for the UVB valuation year is the excess (if any) of the plan's premium funding target for the UVB valuation year (determined under paragraph (b) of this section) over the fair market value of the plan's assets for the UVB valuation year (determined under paragraph (c) of this section). Unfunded vested benefits for the UVB valuation year must be determined as of the plan's UVB valuation date , based on the plan provisions and the plan's population as of that date. The determination must be made in a manner consistent with generally accepted actuarial principles and practices.

(b) Premium funding target—(1) In general. A plan's premium funding target is its standard premium funding target under paragraph (b)(2) of this section or, if an election to use the alternative premium funding target under §4006.5(g) is in effect, its alternative premium funding target under §4006.5(g).

(2) Standard premium funding target. A plan's standard premium funding target under this section is the plan's funding target as determined under ERISA section 303(d) (or 303(i), if applicable) for the UVB valuation year using the same assumptions that are used for funding purposes, except that—

(i) Only vested benefits are taken into account, and

(ii) The interest rates to be used are the segment rates for the month preceding the month in which the UVB valuation year begins that are determined in accordance with ERISA section 4006(a)(3)(E)(iv). These are the rates that would be determined under ERISA section 303(h)(2)(C) if ERISA section 303(h)(2)(D) were applied by using the monthly yields for the month preceding the month in which the UVB valuation year begins on investment grade corporate bonds with varying maturities and in the top 3 quality levels rather than the average of such yields for a 24-month period. For this purpose, the transition rule in ERISA section 303(h)(2)(G) is inapplicable.

(3) “At-risk” plans; transition rules; loading factor. The transition rules in ERISA section 303(i)(5) apply to the determination of the premium funding target of a plan in at-risk status for funding purposes. If a plan in at-risk status is also described in ERISA section 303(i)(1)(A)(ii) for the UVB valuation year, its premium funding target reflects a loading factor pursuant to ERISA section 303(i)(1)(C) equal to the sum of—

(i) Per-participant portion of loading factor. The amount determined for funding purposes under ERISA section 303(i)(1)(C)(i) for the UVB valuation year, and

(ii) Four percent portion of loading factor. Four percent of the premium funding target determined as if the plan were not in at-risk status.

(c) Value of assets. The fair market value of a plan's assets under this section is determined in the same manner as for funding purposes under ERISA section 303(g)(3) and (4), except that averaging as described in ERISA section 303(g)(3)(B) must not be used and prior year contributions are included only to the extent received by the plan by the date the premium is filed. Contribution receipts must be accounted for as described in ERISA section 303(g)(4), using effective interest rates determined under ERISA section 303(h)(2)(A) (not rates that could be determined based on the segment rates described in paragraph (b)(2) of this section).

(d) “Vested.” For purposes of ERISA section 4006(a)(3)(E), this part, and part 4007 of this chapter:

(1) A participant's benefit that is otherwise vested does not fail to be vested merely because of the circumstance that the participant is living, in the case of the following death benefits:

(i) A qualified pre-retirement survivor annuity (as described in ERISA section 205(e)), (ii) A post-retirement survivor annuity that pays some or all of the participant's benefit amount for a fixed or contingent period (such as a joint and survivor annuity or a certain and continuous annuity), and

(iii) A benefit that returns the participant's accumulated mandatory employee contributions (as described in ERISA section 204(c)(2)(C)).

(2) A benefit otherwise vested does not fail to be vested merely because of the circumstance that the benefit may be eliminated or reduced by the adoption of a plan amendment or by the occurrence of a condition or event (such as a change in marital status).

(3) A participant's pre-retirement lump-sum death benefit (other than a benefit described in paragraph (d)(1)(iii) of this section) is not vested if the participant is living.

(4) A participant's disability benefit is not vested if the participant is not disabled.

(e) Illustration of vesting principles. The vesting principles set forth in paragraph (d) of this section are illustrated by the following examples:

(1) Example 1. Under Plan A, if a participant retires at or after age 55 but before age 62, the participant receives a temporary supplement from retirement until age 62. The supplement is not a QSUPP (qualified social security supplement), as defined in Treasury Reg. §1.401(a)(4)-12, and is not protected under Code section 411(d)(6). The temporary supplement is considered vested, and its value is included in the premium funding target, for each participant who, on the UVB valuation date, is at least 55 but less than 62, and thus eligible for the supplement. The calculation is unaffected by the fact that the plan could be amended to remove the supplement after the UVB valuation date.

(2) Example 2. Plan B provides a qualified pre-retirement survivor annuity (QPSA) upon the death of a participant who has five years of service, at no charge to the participant. The QPSA is considered vested, and its value is included in the premium funding target, for each participant who, on the UVB valuation date, has five years of service and is thus eligible for the QPSA. The calculation is unaffected by the fact that the participant is alive on that date.

(f) Plans to which special funding rules apply. The following statutory provisions are disregarded for purposes of determining unfunded vested benefits (whether the standard premium funding target or the alternative premium funding target is used):

(1) Section 402(b) of the Pension Protection Act of 2006, Public Law 109-280, dealing with certain frozen plans of commercial passenger airlines and airline caterers.

(2) Section 306 of ERISA and section 433 of the Code, dealing with certain defined benefit pension plans maintained by certain cooperatives and charities.

[73 FR 15074, Mar. 21, 2008, as amended at 79 FR 13560, Mar. 11, 2014; 85 FR 6058, Feb. 4, 2020]

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