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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 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. For additional information, see PBGC’s procedures for guidance documents.

Title Issuance Date Agency Identifiersort descending Topics Summary Posted Date
Opinion Letter 80-15 6-20-1980 PBGC Op Let 80-15 Coverage, Professional service employer plan River pilot is not a professional individual for purposes of the Professional Service Employer exemption. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 80-16 9-23-1980 PBGC Op Let 80-16 Successor liability Discusses successor plan requirements. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 80-19 11-13-1980 PBGC Op Let 80-19 Coverage, Nonresident aliens Plan meets the Nonresident Alien plan coverage exemption. All plan participants and records regarding plan located in Hong Kong. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 80-22 12-16-1980 PBGC Op Let 80-22 Multiemployer, Termination Discusses the rules governing plan termination and notes that the employers may owe withdrawal liability. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 80-04 4-2-1980 PBGC Op Let 80-4 Premiums Participant count is determined as of last day of previous plan year and may not be adjusted for changes that occur during the plan year. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 80-09 6-9-1980 PBGC Op Let 80-9 Coverage, Professional service employer plan Optician is not a professional individual for purposes of the Professional Service Employer plan exemption. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 81-10 5-5-1981 PBGC Op Let 81-10 tax qualification, Coverage, Termination A plan that in practice met the criteria for tax qualification for five years prior to its termination date was covered under Title IV at plan termination. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 81-11 5-11-1981 PBGC Op Let 81-11 Termination, Benefit guarantee PBGC did not guarantee benefits for a terminated plan, the termination of which was done in concert with the establishment of new retirement arrangements designed to provide substantially the same benefits. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 81-13 5-13-1981 PBGC Op Let 81-13 Coverage, Governmental plan A plan maintained by a company under contract to provide services for a Federal agency does not meet the Governmental plan coverage exemption. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 81-15 5-28-1981 PBGC Op Let 81-15 Termination PBGC accepted the withdrawal of a plan’s notice of intent to terminate because employers would continue to make contributions pursuant to their collective bargaining agreements and the plan participants would continue to receive credit under the plan for service with contributing employers. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 81-16 6-8-1981 PBGC Op Let 81-16 Coverage, tax qualification A retirement arrangement is not covered plan under Title IV because it is not tax qualified. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 81-18 6-29-1981 PBGC Op Let 81-18 Residual assets Addresses the distribution of residual assets to an employer. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 81-19 7-1-1981 PBGC Op Let 81-19 Multiemployer, sale of assets, Withdrawal, Construction industry Addresses the applicability of the “sale of assets exception: to the construction industry complete withdrawal rules. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 81-02 2-24-1981 PBGC Op Let 81-2 Coverage, Governmental plan Plan meets the Governmental plan coverage exemption. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 81-20 7-15-1981 PBGC Op Let 81-20 Reportable events, Determination of plan sufficiency, Termination The sale by a parent corporation with a division that maintains a pension plan with nonforfeitable benefits which are not funded of $1 million or more of an incorporated subsidiary, irrespective of its relative size, results in a reportable event. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 81-23 8-14-1981 PBGC Op Let 81-23 Coverage, Governmental plan Plan meets the Governmental plan coverage exemption. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 81-24 8-21-1981 PBGC Op Let 81-24 Residual assets Addresses the distribution of residual assets to an employer. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 81-26 8-24-1981 PBGC Op Let 81-26 Residual assets Addresses the distribution of residual assets to an employer. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 81-27 8-28-1981 PBGC Op Let 81-27 Multiemployer, Bargaining representative Addresses the special rules governing a transfer between multiemployer plans where an employer withdraws from a plan because the union bargaining with that employer has been changed as a result of the certification of a different union. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 81-28 8-31-1981 PBGC Op Let 81-28 Multiemployer, Premiums Discusses premium payment obligations under specific circumstances. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 81-03 3-4-1981 PBGC Op Let 81-3 Coverage, Tribal plan, Governmental plan Tribal plan meets the Governmental plan coverage exemption. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 81-30 9-22-1981 PBGC Op Let 81-30 Coverage, Governmental plan Plan meets the Governmental plan coverage exemption. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 81-31 9-22-1981 PBGC Op Let 81-31 Coverage, Governmental plan Plan meets the Governmental plan coverage exemption. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 81-32 9-25-1981 PBGC Op Let 81-32 Multiemployer, Withdrawal, 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. This opinion letter addresses whether the buyer may escrow a letter of credit instead of cash. 2-28-2020
Opinion Letter 81-33 9-22-1981 PBGC Op Let 81-33 Multiemployer, Construction industry Addresses the definition of “building and construction industry” and explains that the term should be given the same meaning as it has under the Taft-Hartley Act. 2-28-2020

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