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Guidance Document Database

The documents listed below are PBGC’s guidance documents, as defined by EO 13891, sec. 2(b), see Federal Register Notice. The contents of these documents do not have the force and effect of law, unless expressly authorized by statute or incorporated into a contract, and are not meant to bind the public in any way. These documents are intended only to provide clarity to the public regarding existing requirements under the law or agency policies. PBGC will only cite, use, or rely on any guidance that is not posted in this database to establish historical facts.

If you would like to request the withdrawal or modification of an existing guidance document, please submit your request, including your contact information, to the General Counsel at or at Regulatory Affairs Division, Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation, Office of the General Counsel, 1200 K Street NW, Washington, DC 20005–4026. For additional information, see PBGC’s procedures for guidance documents.

Title Issuance Date Agency Identifier Topics Summary Posted Datesort descending
Opinion Letter 87-08 8-14-1987 PBGC Op Let 87-08 Multiemployer, Withdrawal Liability Addresses whether a contributing employer to a multiemployer plan withdraws by subcontracting out its work to another contributing employer such that contributions are unaffected. 2-21-2020
Opinion Letter 77-169 11-28-1977 PBGC Op Let 77-169 Coverage, Governmental plan Participation in a plan maintained by more than one employer, some of which are not governmental entities, precludes the application of the Governmental plan exemption. 2-24-2020
Missing Participants FAQs 10-4-2018 PBGC Web 014 Missing participants FAQs on how to handle missing participants in plans that terminate before 2018. 2-28-2020
Partition FAQs for Practitioners 12-6-2019 PBGC Web 006 Multiemployer, Partitions Answers common questions about eligibility and applications for partitions of multiemployer plans. 2-28-2020
Risk Mitigation & Early Warning Questions and Answers 7-20-2018 PBGC Web 003 Risk Mitigation, Early Warning Answers commonly asked questions about PBGC’s Risk Mitigation & Early Warning Program. 2-28-2020
Multiemployer Insolvent Plan Administrative Expense FAQs 8-24-2017 PBGC Web 005 Multiemployer Answers common questions about reasonable administrative expenses of insolvent multiemployer plans. 2-28-2020
Active Participant Reduction Reportable Events 9-15-2017 PBGC TU 17-1 Reportable events, Notices Guidance on compliance with the active participant reduction event requirements of section 4043(c)(3) of ERISA and PBGC’s regulation on Reportable Events and Certain Other Notification Requirements (29 CFR part 4043.23(a)). PBGC adopted a rule addressing the issue effective 3/5/2020. (See 29 CFR part 4010.) 2-28-2020
PBGC Insurance Coverage 12-6-2019 PBGC Web 001 Coverage Addresses how to determine whether a pension plan is covered by PBGC and explains the common exemptions from coverage. 2-28-2020
Requests to Review Multiemployer Plan Alternative Terms and Conditions to Satisfy Withdrawal Liability 4-4-2018 83 FR 14524 Multiemployer, Withdrawal Liability Reviews information that PBGC finds helpful and factors that PBGC considers in reviewing multiemployer plan proposals for alternative terms and conditions to satisfy withdrawal liability. 2-28-2020
4010 Financial Information Reporting Waiver 10-16-2019 PBGC TU 19-1 Annual reporting Guidance on compliance with the annual financial and actuarial information reporting requirements under Section 4010 of ERISA. PBGC adopted a rule addressing the issue effective 3/5/2020. (See 29 CFR part 4010.) 2-28-2020
Disaster Relief 7-2-2018 83 FR 30991 Disaster relief PBGC's disaster relief is available when the Internal Revenue Service issues disaster relief for taxpayers that includes filing extensions for the Form 5500 series. Also, for premium filings no late payment interest charges will be assessed for the disaster relief period. 2-28-2020
Use of Alternative Dispute Resolution 4-12-1999 64 FR 17696 Mediation, Arbitration Provides that PBGC will use, where appropriate, alternative dispute resolution. 2-28-2020
Disaster Relief Announcements Archive 6-28-2018 PBGC Web 012 Disaster Relief Announcements Archive PBGC disaster relief announcements from 2013-2018. 2-28-2020
Standard Terminations: Q&A 1-28-2020 PBGC Web 013 Standard termination Provides information on filing a standard termination, distribution of benefits, and standard termination audits 2-28-2020
Increased Guarantee Limit for Multiemployer Plans 12-26-2000 PBGC TU 00-7 Multiemployer, Benefit guarantee Discusses how the PBGC's maximum guarantee limit works under the multiemployer insurance program and explains an increase in maximum guarantee limit for participants in multiemployer plans. 2-28-2020
Present Value of the Maximum PBGC Guaranteed Benefit under IRC Section 436(d)(3)(A)(ii) and ERISA Section 206(g)(3)(C)(i)(II) 12-17-2007 PBGC TU 07-4 Present value, Benefit guarantee Guidance on determining the present value of the maximum benefit guaranteed by PBGC. 2-28-2020
Simplified Methods for Applying the Requirement to Disregard Benefit Reductions in Determining Withdrawal Liability - Multiemployer Pension Plans - Pension Protection Act of 2006 7-15-2010 PBGC TU 10-3 PPA, Multiemployer, Unfunded vested benefits, Withdrawal Liability Provides simplified methods for the application of the statutory requirement that multiemployer plans in critical status disregard certain benefit reductions in determining the plan's unfunded vested benefits for purposes of determining an employer's withdrawal liability under section 4201 of ERISA. 2-28-2020
Multiemployer Plans - Clarification of Schedule R (Form 5500) Instructions and Partial Reporting Relief for 2009 6-8-2010 PBGC TU 10-1 Annual reporting Clarifies the Line 14 Instructions for the Schedule R (Form 5500) and provides partial reporting relief for completing Line 14 for the 2009 plan year. 2-28-2020
Minimum Lump Sum Assumptions for Single-Employer Plans that Terminate in a Plan Year Beginning on or After January 1, 2008 12-31-2008 PBGC TU 08-4 Standard termination, PPA, Lump sum Expands on guidance in Technical Update 07-3 on lump sum valuation issues for single-employer plans that terminate in a standard termination. Applies to plans that terminate on or after the effective date of certain amendments to the law as enacted by the Pension Protection Act of 2006 (PPA 2006) concerning how to apply the PPA 2006 changes in the interest rate and mortality table used in calculating minimum lump sum amounts. 2-28-2020
Minimum Lump Sum Assumptions for Terminating Single-Employer Plans; Effect of Pension Protection Act of 2006 12-3-2007 PBGC TU 07-3 Lump sum, Standard termination Guidance on lump sum valuation issues for single-employer plans that terminate in a standard termination with a termination date prior to, and a final distribution date on or after, the effective date of changes in the interest rate and mortality table used in calculating minimum lump sum values under the Pension Protection Act. 2-28-2020
Risk Mitigation & Early Warning Program 12-6-2019 PBGC Web 004 Risk Mitigation, Early Warning Provides information about PBGC’s review of corporate transactions or events that may pose an increased risk to single-employer pension plans. 2-28-2020
PBGC Premium Filings for CSEC Plans for 2019 and 2020 Plan Years 1-3-2020 PBGC TU 20-1 Premiums Guidance for cooperative and small-employer charity (CSEC) plans on filing premiums for 2019 and 2020 plan years that reflect the premium changes under the Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement Act of 2019 (SECURE Act). 2-28-2020
Qualified Domestic Relations Orders and PBGC 2-1-2019 PBGC Web 011 Domestic Relations Orders General information on submitting domestic relations orders to PBGC after PBGC becomes trustee of a terminated pension plan and the procedures PBGC follows to determine whether an order is a qualified domestic relations order 2-28-2020
FOIA 12-16-2019 PBGC Web 015 Freedom of Information Act PBGC’s Freedom of Information Act Guide 2-28-2020
Frequently Asked Questions About ERISA 4062(e) 12-6-2019 PBGC Web 002 Substantial cessation of operations Answers common questions on liability and notice requirements following a substantial cessation of operations. 2-28-2020