ABA applauds DOL’s delay of proposed changes to Form 5500

The American Bankers Association last week thanked the Department of Labor for deferring regulatory action on the Schedule H reforms proposed by the department in its recently finalized revisions to Form 5500, which reports annual information about the operation, funding, assets and investments of pensions and other employee benefit plans.

In earlier correspondence, ABA urged the department to delay the finalization of proposed financial reporting changes to Form 5500’s Schedule H or remove some of the proposed reporting requirements, such as those focused on “hard to value” assets and asset identifiers. ABA supports improving the usability of the form but believes the proposed changes would create unnecessary reporting burdens and costs for banks. The association recommended that changes should be addressed separately as part of DOL’s larger, ongoing effort to modernize the financial and other annual reporting requirements on the form. The department plans to conduct a separate assessment, which will result in a notice of proposed rulemaking later this year.

In its recent letter of support, ABA recommended that the department meet with industry stakeholders prior to the NPR release, to help with “crafting revisions that would make the terms used and information requested in the revised Form 5500 consistent with existing industry standards, practices, information systems and technology, while being appropriately targeted to achieve the department’s regulatory goals.”