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DOL penalty updates

The Department of Labor (DOL) recently finalized regulations containing civil penalty inflation adjustments for 2019 in accordance with the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act of 2015 (the “Act”). The Act requires the DOL publish annual inflation adjustments no later than January 15 for all years after 2016.

Increased penalty amounts for some of the more common ERISA violations related to employee welfare plans are as follows:



2018 penalty amount, effective Jan. 2, 2018

2019 penalty amount, effective Jan. 23, 2019

Failure to file Form 5500.

Note: Late filers who voluntarily submit overdue Forms 5500 pay reduced penalties under the Delinquent Filer Voluntary Correction Program.

$2,140 per day per plan

$2,194 per day per plan

Failure to file Form M-1 (annual MEWA filing).

$1,558 per day

$1,597 per day

Failure to timely provide a compliant Summary of Benefits and Coverage per Affordable Care Act requirements.

$1,128 per failure

$1,156 per failure

Failure to comply with Medicaid/CHIP notice requirements.

$114 per day per employee

$117 per day per employee

Violation of Genetic Information Nondisclosure Act (GINA) by group health plan sponsor or health insurer.

$114 per day per participant

$117 per day per participant

Failure to furnish employee benefits documents (including plan documents, summary plan descriptions and summary of material modifications) to the Department of Labor upon request.

$152 per day (not to exceed $1,527)

$156 per day (not to exceed $1,566)