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Guidance Document Database

The documents listed below are PBGC’s guidance documents. 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.

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 GuidanceComments@pbgc.gov or at Regulatory Affairs Division, Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation, Office of the General Counsel, 1200 K Street NW, Washington, DC 20005–4026.

Title Issuance Date Agency Identifiersort ascending Topics Summary Posted Date
Opinion Letter 83-22 9-15-1983 PBGC Op Let 83-22 Allocation of assets Excess assets do not revert to the plan sponsor. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 83-21 9-8-1983 PBGC Op Let 83-21 Multiemployer, Withdrawal Liability, Construction industry Addresses the definition of the term "building and construction industry" for purposes of the construction industry exception to withdrawal. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 83-20 9-2-1983 PBGC Op Let 83-20 Multiemployer, Partial Withdrawal Addresses whether a partial withdrawal occurs when an employer that operates two terminals in a metropolitan area, each under a separate collective bargaining agreement requiring contributions to the same multiemployer plan, closes one terminal but continues to perform the work of the closed terminal through the remaining terminal and other outlying terminals. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 83-19 8-11-1983 PBGC Op Let 83-19 Multiemployer, Withdrawal Liability Addresses whether, under the presumptive method of allocating withdrawal liability, if a plan's assets exceed its vested liabilities, the unfunded vested benefit amount is zero. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 83-18 8-5-1983 PBGC Op Let 83-18 Multiemployer, Withdrawal Addresses whether incorporation of a sole proprietorship constitutes a withdrawal from a multiemployer pension plan where the successor corporation becomes party to the collective bargaining agreement and continues to contribute to the plan on behalf of its employees for the same operations for which contributions were previously contributed by the sole proprietor. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 83-17 8-1-1983 PBGC Op Let 83-17 Multiemployer, Withdrawal Liability Pending regulations, plans have the ability to adopt reasonable rules to abate an employer’s withdrawal liability. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 83-16 7-12-1983 PBGC Op Let 83-16 Coverage, Governmental plan Government contractors are not excluded from PBGC coverage. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 83-15 7-7-1983 PBGC Op Let 83-15 Termination Look to plan documents to determine plan administrator 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 83-13 6-10-1983 PBGC Op Let 83-13 Multiemployer, Withdrawal Liability, Construction industry Addresses the definition of the term "building and construction industry" for purposes of the construction industry exception to withdrawal. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 83-12 5-20-1983 PBGC Op Let 83-12 Standard termination Standard termination of plans and establishment of new plans that do not include past service credits will not cause PBGC to reject a proper notice of intent to terminate. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 83-11 5-16-1983 PBGC Op Let 83-11 Multiemployer, Withdrawal Addresses whether an employer who contributes to a multiemployer plan withdraws from the plan as a consequence of forming a wholly owned subsidiary which assumes all of its obligations to the plan. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 83-10 5-12-1983 PBGC Op Let 83-10 Multiemployer, Asset Sale Exception Regards a statutory provision under which a contributing employer to a multiemployer plan that sells its assets to an unrelated buyer does not withdraw from the plan if (among other things) the buyer posts a bond or escrow and the sales contract makes the seller secondarily liable if the buyer withdraws during the 5 plan years after the sale. Addresses calculation of withdrawal liability of an employer that previously sold some of its assets where, under that statutory provision, the asset sale was not a withdrawal. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 83-01 1-4-1983 PBGC Op Let 83-1 Investigatory authority PBGC not subject to state divorce court; PBGC’s authority is limited by the terms of title IV of ERISA and therefore the PBGC cannot submit to the state court's jurisdiction. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 83-08 3-25-1983 PBGC Op Let 83-08 Multiemployer, Asset Sale Exception Regards a statutory provision under which a contributing employer to a multiemployer plan that sells its assets to an unrelated buyer does not withdraw from the plan if (among other things) the buyer posts a bond or escrow for 5 years and the sales contract makes the seller secondarily liable if the buyer withdraws during the 5 plan years after the sale. Addresses whether that exception to withdrawal applies if the buyer initially posts a bond for only the first two years. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 83-07 3-21-1983 PBGC Op Let 83-07 Multiemployer, Expenses Addresses a request to use employer contributions, PBGC financial assistance, and other monies received by a plan to pay union dues for retirees and beneficiaries. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 82-05 2-18-1982 PBGC Op Let 82-5 Multiemployer, Partial Withdrawal Discusses partial withdrawals from a multiemployer plan. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 82-40 12-27-1982 PBGC Op Let 82-40 Multiemployer, Withdrawal Regards a statutory provision under which a contributing employer to a multiemployer plan does not withdraw from the plan because it ceases to exist due to a change in organizational form if there is no interruption in the employer's contributions or obligation to contribute; addresses whether that exception to withdrawal applies to an employer that sells its assets where the purchaser takes over the seller's name, plant, and employees. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 82-39 12-20-1982 PBGC Op Let 82-39 Multiemployer, Withdrawal Liability, Dispute Resolution Addresses the determination of withdrawal liability and the procedure to dispute withdrawal liability. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 82-38 12-14-1982 PBGC Op Let 82-38 Multiemployer, Withdrawal Liability, Shareholders Addresses whether officers or shareholders may be held liable for a corporation’s withdrawal liability. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 82-37 12-9-1982 PBGC Op Let 82-37 Multiemployer, Withdrawal Liability, Employer Addresses the definition of employer in the context of building cleaners at an office building. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 82-35 11-15-1982 PBGC Op Let 82-35 Multiemployer, Partial Withdrawal Review of rules governing partial withdrawal as applied to sale of some facilities under CBA. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 82-34 11-10-1982 PBGC Op Let 82-34 Multiemployer, Unfunded vested benefits Under presumptive method, if a plan is fully funded because the value of plan assets never falls below liabilities, the plan would record a zero change in the value of unfunded vested benefits despite fluctuations in unfunded vested benefits. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 82-33 10-28-1982 PBGC Op Let 82-33 Multiemployer, Definition of For a chain of food stores, a single store is ordinarily a “facility” for purposes of section 4217 of ERISA. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 82-32 10-28-1982 PBGC Op Let 82-32 Multiemployer, Withdrawal Liability, Dispute Resolution Addresses the procedure to follow when parties to a dispute over withdrawal liability do not agree on the selection of an arbitrator. PBGC adopted a rule addressing the issue. (See 29 CFR § 4221.4.) 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 82-03 2-2-1982 PBGC Op Let 82-3 Coverage, Church plans Plan meets the Church plan coverage exemption. 2-28-2020

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