As an employee it is important to understand what documents you as a retirement plan participant will be able to review. When you request to see certain documents they need to be given to you by law to review. Other documents will require a written request or a fee by your employer.
To help you understand the particular documents that you will be able to review upon request, here are the ones that you have a right to see without written permission and without having to pay a small fee to see them.
One: Description of the summary plan – This document is provided by the plan administrator and is important to review so you understand exactly what the important features for this plan are.
Some of the different features to be aware of are:
– When the employee started participating in this plan
– When the benefits became vested
– When any payment has been received and the form it was received in
– How you can claim your benefits
Two: Automatic enrollment notice – Not all plans have this notice included but if it is, than you will be able to review it just by asking.
Three: Your individual benefit statement – This is vital to review because it has important information about your account balance and vested benefits.
Four: Annual funding notice – This is the financial condition for the defined pension plan.
Five: Material modifications summary – This will tell you about any significant changes that have been made to the plan or to changes for the information that is required to be placed in the SPD.
Six: Annual summary report – This is the form 5500 Annual Return/Report that has a summary of the financial information that was filed by the plan.
Seven: A notice for significant reduction for future benefit accruals – This will tell you if there are any problems with your future retirement plan that you need to know about right away.
These are the most important documents that you can review as a retirement plan participant without having to make a written request for them or to pay a small fee to see them. Take time to review as many of these documents as you can so you can be sure that everything is as it should be with your retirement plan. Never just assume that everything is okay with it, always double check for your own peace of mind.