Sessions by Topic

General Sessions

001 - AI and Technology in the Actuarial Workplace

ChatGPT and other advanced AI and analytic technologies are becoming increasingly prevalent in today’s workplace. Learn about what these technologies do, how they are being used, and how they will shape the future of work in actuarial consulting.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

002 - Ethics

In this highly interactive session, panelists and audience members discuss solutions to difficult ethical situations faced by actuaries in their day‐to‐day practices, including dealing with the IRS, correcting errors, billing clients, and clarity of communications. As applicable, we also consider interactions – reinforcing or conflicting – between Professionalism, Law and Ethics, as well as the differences between rules from the Joint Board for the Enrollment of Actuaries and from the US actuarial organizations (AAA, SOA, CCA, ASEA).
Credits:
CPD Credit: 2.00
EA Ethics Credit: 2.00
EA Formal Credit: 2.00

003 - SECURE 3.0 (SECURE 1.0 + SECURE 2.0): Actuaries Discuss DC

The passage of the SECURE Acts made significant improvements to accessibility and availability of retirement plans, but they also came with a few challenges. Panelists discuss how DC plans are adapting to the opportunities and changes brought about by both Acts, as well as the prospects for additional legislation in this area.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Non-Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

Retirement Sessions

202 - Capital Market Update and Economic Assumptions in a Changing Environment

With rising inflation, interest rates hikes, and equity market volatility the future is unlikely to look like the past. So, how do we reconcile the past with the future (if that’s even possible)? Speakers at this session explore the various economic expectations and discuss how actuaries should factor these into their assumption setting process.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

205 - Early Retirement Windows

Panelists discuss legal, actuarial, and practical issues relating to early retirement windows. Topics covered include non-discrimination testing, cost estimates (including estimating acceptance rates), AFTAP calculations, benefit restrictions under Sections 415 and 436, and designing windows to achieve sponsor objectives.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Non-Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

303 - Retirement Lump Sum Need to Knows

The speakers discuss issues related to lump sum options in pension plans. Topics covered may include valuation of lump sums for funding and accounting valuations, bulk lump sum offers, partial lump sums, calculation of lump sums in special situations like RASDs or late payments, QJSA most valuable rules, relative value, 415 limits, or other topics.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

402 - Retirement Plan Consulting for Nonprofits

There are different considerations and challenges in qualified and nonqualified plan consulting for a nonprofit organization than for a for-profit company. Some of the topics addressed in this session include the effects of tax-exempt status, nonqualified plans under IRC Sections 457(b) and (f), the determination of the controlled group, Form 990 reporting requirements, IRS reasonable compensation requirements, and the excise tax on annual compensation in excess of $1M. Hear a panel of experienced practitioners navigate these issues along with providing practical suggestions.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Non-Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

502 - Plan Sponsor Bankruptcy

The panel at this session covers from a broad perspective the impact of bankruptcy on an employer's benefit plans. The panel discusses many wide-ranging issues such as: who is your client once the bankruptcy process begins, and how do you get paid; the competing interests of various parties such as the plan sponsor, the actuary, stockholders, creditors, and the PBGC; how is the plan funded during bankruptcy, and nonqualified and DC issues. Other topics covered include a compliance overview and other legal issues.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Core Credit: 0.75
EA Non-Core Credit: 0.75
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

601 - De-risking (Buyouts/Buy ins) 95-1 Including LDI

Large and small plan sponsors continue to evaluate strategies to transfer or mitigate pension plan risk. The demand for de-risking approaches has led to a wide range of techniques designed to help dampen or remove volatility and protect improvements in funded status. Speakers discuss strategies involving governance, investments, and liabilities.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Non-Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

802 - Church Plans

Panelists review the latest developments in church plan litigation and discuss practical actuarial and administrative issues for church plans in the current environment.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Non-Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

804 - What Pension Actuaries Need to Know About Investments (Asset Classes)

Do you know enough about investments? Do you know enough about the plan’s investments to engage with your sponsors’ auditors and investment advisors when questions arise about your expected return assumption? Can you find enough information to populate your expected return model? Are you comfortable discussing at a high-level topics like duration, hedge funds, alternate investments, private equity, and alpha- and beta-focused investments? Come to this session and get more comfortable with investment discussions as they relate to pension plans.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Core Credit: 0.75
EA Non-Core Credit: 0.75
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

903 - Selecting and Supporting Accounting Assumptions

Panelists review the process of setting various accounting assumptions applicable under both US GAAP and IFRS standards. The speakers emphasize the need to properly document the methods and thought process that went into the recommendations and how to communicate this if asked by the client’s auditors.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

Single Employer Plans Sessions

101 - EPCRS / Overpayments

The SECURE 2.0 Act made significant changes to the Employee Plans Compliance Resolution System, and to the ability of plans to collect overpayments from participants. Panelists will discuss the changes and IRS guidance that has been issued.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

103 - Hot Topics in Frozen Plans

Your client’s plan has been frozen for a number of years. Coverage has declined, assets may have grown or decreased, interest rates have risen precipitously. The plan sponsor needs to develop a strategy to address short-term and long-term issues, including how to meet minimum funding requirements, how to comply with the rules of IRC sections 401(a)(4), 410(b), and 401(a)(26) (which may force unanticipated plan changes), and how to complete an efficient and cost-effective plan termination (if that’s their goal). The speakers address potential issues and possible strategies to avoid them. Speakers may also address similar issues encountered in some closed plan situations.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

201 - Litigation Affecting DB Plans

The speakers review recent court decisions, ongoing litigation and complaints filed that could affect defined benefit plans or pension actuaries. This year's cases include actuarial malpractice involving public plans, multiemployer plans, and single employer plans, in addition to cases involving actuarial assumptions in several different contexts.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

301 - Late Breaking Developments

Speakers discuss the latest developments in the private pension plan sector. Topics that may be covered include recently enacted and pending legislation; proposed and final regulatory guidance and other regulatory activity; recent litigation; and pending and adopted revisions to the Actuarial Standards of Practice.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

304 - Current Issues in Accounting

Speakers address recent accounting issues and considerations from the perspective of both actuaries and auditors under ASC 715, 960 and 965 as well as IAS 19.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Non-Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

401 - Plan Termination Lessons Learned and Looking Forward

Standard plan terminations have been on the rise over the last ten years and their prevalence is expected to continue into the near future. Plan terminations follow a very prescriptive process with timelines, notices, filings, and the eventual liability settlement. Speakers at this session review the plan termination process and discuss the considerations that need to be given as we work with clients to successfully navigate the process.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

501 - Best of the Gray, Blue, and Green Books

Between 1990 and 2019, a panel of experienced practitioners engaged in a written Q&A with government regulators. The results of these interactions were published at the EA Meeting as Gray Books (IRS), Blue Books (PBGC) and Green Books (DOL). Panelists lead a review of past responses of particular interest and facilitate a dialogue on practical implications and alternative approaches where complete answers are not provided.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

505 - Understanding Corporate Financial Statements (Proxy & 10K)

Where do the corporate financial accounting numbers end up on your client's financial statement? The speakers at this session provide insight into this so actuaries are better prepared to discuss with their clients the impact of the accounting results. Discussion topics include OCI, AOCI, retained earnings, as well as which results flow through P&L and which items are on the balance sheet.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Non-Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

603 - Nondiscrimination Rules – Current Issues

The speakers focus on aspects of the IRC 410(b)/401(a)(4) nondiscrimination rules that are coming into play with increasing frequency in the current economic and plan design environment. The speakers address issues that arise for closed plans where future employees are primarily covered by DC programs, or when grandfathered groups within a plan have more generous benefits. This includes the relief provided by the SECURE Act(s) – including areas of uncertainty.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

701 - 401(a)9 Regulations

The speakers discuss recent proposed or final changes to the IRC §401(a)(9) regulations to reflect the SECURE Act, SECURE 2.0, and other changes.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Core Credit: 0.75
EA Non-Core Credit: 0.75
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

703 - Participant-Facing Communications Compliance Requirements

The speakers review required disclosure directly to participants with particular focus on the annual funding notices and benefit restriction notifications. Speakers also review other disclosure requirements such as annual statements and relative value disclosure. Attendees should come away with the knowledge to help their clients navigate the complex communications and disclosure labyrinth.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

805 - Surplus Assets

The panelists provide a current look at pension surplus opportunities for sponsors of defined benefit plans. Also covered are the variety of options sponsors have to utilize surpluses efficiently and effectively, as well as alternative approaches for surplus use in the plan termination process. All practical options available to employers are discussed, from the common strategies to the lesser known ones. This session should prove valuable for actuaries who may be in a position to consult with sponsors facing this scenario, now or in the future.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

901 - Single Employer Regulator Update: IRS, PBGC and Treasury

A panel of representatives from the IRS, PBGC, and Treasury Department provide updates and field your questions on a number of challenging issues. This is your chance to ask what you've always wanted to know about guidance. This session is not intended to address specific client issues.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

Professionalism Sessions

203 - ASB Standards for Pension Actuaries

In many situations, outside bodies place limits on our professional judgment – IRS, FASB, PBGC, etc. If you’re looking for an overview of the ASB’s standards affecting pension actuaries issued by our own profession, this session is for you!
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

403 - AI and Technology in the Actuarial Workplace - A Deeper Dive

This session continues discussion from the opening general session on the application of ChatGPT and other advanced AI and analytic technologies in the actuarial workplace, by diving deeper into specific ways that pension actuaries might potentially use AI in preparing work products, as well as the professionalism aspects to consider as we evaluate adoption of these new technologies.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

503 - Bias in Pension Actuarial Work

The recent revisions to the United States Qualification Standards include a bias topic continuing education requirement for all actuaries. Learn about examples of how pension actuaries encounter bias in the data, assumptions and models that they use in providing actuarial services.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Non-Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

801 - Dialogue with the Joint Board

Representatives of the Joint Board for the Enrollment of Actuaries discuss current developments and other information relevant to Enrolled Actuaries and the profession at large. Topics may include tips to successfully prepare an application for initial enrollment, navigating an audit of continuing education, and complying with the regulations that govern Enrolled Actuaries. Attendee questions are encouraged.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

803 - How Not to be a Fiduciary

ERISA litigation is on the upswing and a core issue often involves identifying plan fiduciaries. Speakers provide an overview of the basic roles and responsibilities of key players with respect to an ERISA plan. The panelists then explore how the fiduciary rules commonly intersect with the work of an Enrolled Actuary and how that actuary can avoid inadvertently becoming a fiduciary.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

Public Plans Sessions

105 - Public Plans White Paper 2.0

In 2014 the CCA published the definitive white paper on actuarial funding policies and practices for public pension plans. The CCA Public Plans Community is currently revising the white paper to reflect practical experience with white paper model practices as well as new ASOP requirements. Panelists discuss the proposed revisions.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Non-Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

305 - Tax Qualification Standards for Public Plans

Do you know which sections of the Internal Revenue Code (IRC) apply to governmental Defined Benefit (DB) plans? Come hear a review of the requirements that apply to public sector DB plans and how they affect our work.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

405 - Current Issues in Assumptions and Funding Policy for Public Plans

A panel of public plan actuaries discuss special assumption considerations and funding policies for situations that go beyond the CCA Public Plans Community’s “White Paper,” including surplus management, multiple employer/multiple design municipal plans, and Texas’s approach to funding soundness restoration plans.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Non-Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

605 - Funding Policy and Consulting Issues in a Fixed Rate Environment

“Fixed rate” public sector plans, where contribution rates are set by statute or regulation and are adjusted infrequently, have recently been in the spotlight. In 2014, the CCA issued its “White Paper” on Actuarial Funding Policies and Practices for Public Pension Plans, but deferred a discussion of fixed rate plans. In February 2023, the Academy published a practice note on fixed rate plans. Furthermore, the recent revisions to ASOP No. 4 require actuarial assessments of such funding policies as well as disclosure of a reasonable ADC by such plans. The speakers at this session present examples, discuss funding policy considerations, and review consulting issues that arise with fixed rate plans.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

705 - Service Purchase in Public Retirement Systems

There are numerous administrative issues that arise in public sector pension plans which create complexity in determining participant benefits and how they are valued. Included among them are determining the cost to purchase service credit, the application of 415 limits, QDROs, annuity purchase and optional benefit factors, and determining lump sum benefits. Each of these relies on the selection of appropriate actuarial equivalence factors. Our panel discusses the issues to consider in selecting the "right" assumptions and other challenges associated with the administration of these benefits in public sector plans.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Non-Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

905 - Public Plans Workshop

Join your public plan colleagues in a candid, open discussion of current issues. Session topics may include ASOP 4, volatile capital market assumptions, and practical discussions of issues raised in other sessions.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Non-Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

Multiemployer Plan Sessions

102 - PBGC Multiemployer Update

Over the past year, PBGC has updated its final regulations governing the Special Financial Assistance (SFA) Program, as well as its assumptions guidance and filing instructions. The Agency also issued proposed regulations on 4044 interest rates and other assumptions. This session is an opportunity for multiemployer pension actuaries to hear directly from PBGC on the SFA program and other key topics of interest in regard to PBGC’s multiemployer insurance program. Representatives: • Discuss updated statistics about plans that have already received assistance, observations on the application process, PBGC guidance, “lessons learned” from applications received to-date, what to expect for plans that have not yet applied, changes in census data review and other changes in the last year, and information on compliance with conditions after receiving SFA, including the impact of new 4044 rules on the SFA withdrawal liability interest rate conditions; • Provide an update on the 4213 regulation on withdrawal liability interest rates, proposed in late 2022; • Review PBGC’s most recent financial position and projected funding position of the multiemployer insurance program; and • Cover other PBGC activities – including upcoming regulations, recent PBGC guidance, and newly available resources (i.e., the most recent pension insurance data tables and recent multiemployer plan-related research reports).
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

302 - Special Financial Assistance - Where Are We Now?

Panelists provide an update on the special financial assistance (SFA) program for multiemployer pension plans, as provided under the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021. Practitioners and a representative from the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) discuss various topics related to SFA, including: lessons learned from plans that have been approved for SFA; funding, withdrawal liability, and notice requirements; and compliance with other conditions and restrictions.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

602 - Calculating Withdrawal Liability - What are the Ground Rules?

We remain at a crossroads with respect to the legal status of actuarial assumptions on interest (or discount) rates used to determine withdrawal liability, and on the timing allowed for setting assumptions. Over the past two years, Federal Appellate Courts (in the DC and 9th Circuits) ruled that the use of PBGC Section 4044 interest rates – an annuity-pricing replication mechanism, itself recently proposed for revision - was not in compliance with ERISA, following the 2021 Sofco 6th Circuit decision that banned the use of the “Segal Blend” in that jurisdiction. The panel reviews those cases, as well as recent court decisions that have deviated somewhat from the 2nd Circuit “Metz” ruling, which held that assumptions for withdrawal liability must be set in stone by the measurement date – a departure from typical actuarial practice. In 1980, MPPAA gave PBGC authority to issue regulations in this area; proposed regulations were finally released in late 2022. If a final regulation is issued by early March, panelists cover that, including the potential implications for actuary-plan sponsor dynamics.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

702 - Variable Annuity Plans: Lessons Learned

Variable annuity designs have increased in popularity among multiemployer plans as trustees seek to balance the need to provide cost-effective benefits to participants without exposing employers to financial risks that can jeopardize their businesses. Panelists discuss the experience of these plans in recent years and the key takeaways from that experience. Topics include administrative issues, the perspectives of employees and employers, and regulatory considerations.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Core Credit: 0.75
EA Non-Core Credit: 0.75
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

902 - Schedule MB – Recent Changes and What We Learned

Starting in 2008, the Actuarial Information form for the Form 5500 has been Schedule MB for multiemployer plans. The 2022 Schedule MB had some significant changes from the schedules for prior years. The 2023 Schedule MB has some changes to asset reporting for plans that received special financial assistance. The panelists review the line items of the MB with special attention to recent changes and related instructions.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

Small Plans Sessions

104 - Deep Dive Into Code Section 404

In this session speakers provide an in-depth look at deduction limits under code section 404 with a focus on how to handle (and avoid!) limit violations. Panelists pay particular attention to the combined plan deduction rules of IRC 404(a)(7). Speakers also address Form 5330 and excise taxes under code section 4972--and the exceptions one can utilize to avoid or minimize them--as well as approaches for making the mysterious 4972(c)(7) election.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Core Credit: 0.75
EA Non-Core Credit: 0.75
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

204 - Controlled Groups and Changes to SECURE 2.0

The SECURE 2.0 Act made important changes to the controlled group rules and to the affiliated service group rules as they apply to qualified plans. Speakers at this session review the rules for determining whether there is a controlled group (or affiliated service group), discuss the impact to the changes made by the SECURE 2.0 Act and the impact on small plan designs, and section 415 limitations.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

404 - Compensation for Self-Employed

Sole proprietorship and partners face unique restrictions on funding their retirement plans. The speakers at this session focus on the determination of compensation for self-employed individuals, special rules on self-employed contributions, how to allocate contributions to partners and plan design options that work well for partners.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

504 - Controlling the Code Section 4980 Excise Tax on Reversions

In this session speakers take an in-depth look at the excise tax on reversions under Code Section 4980. Strategies to avoid or lower the tax are addressed, including the use of qualified replacement plans and the allocation of all or a portion of excess assets to plan participants.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

604 - Document Restatements

The Cycle 3 restatement period for defined benefit plans is upon us. Panelists discuss the restatement process and identify opportunities and challenges in the C3 restatement process.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

704 - Cash Balance Design

Cash balance plans have become the plan of choice for professional employers and other small business owners. Panelists discuss cash balance designs including the impact of SECURE 2.0 on combined plan designs.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

904 - Small Plan Workshop

Come prepared to discuss issues with your peers. This is an open forum to discuss issues specific to small plans. Topics may include IRC 401(a)(26), 410(b), 401(a) (4), 401(a)(17), 415, 416, 401(a)(9), 430, 436 and PBGC issues for small plans.
Credits:
CPD Credit: 1.50
EA Core Credit: 1.50
EA Formal Credit: 1.50

Meetings & Education