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Automatic Enrollment: ACA, EACA, and QACA Requirements [2018]
Presentor: David Schultz Recorded Date: 9/17/2018 Duration: 100 Min.

This program was recorded during a live presentation given on September 17, 2018 at 12:00PM EST.

It has been years since the final regulations dealing with automatic enrollment were issued, though the TPA and recordkeeping communities have been slow to embrace automatic enrollment features. Under the final regulations, employers have more options than ever before with ACAs, EACAs, and QACAs. While employers now have options, they are still confused about the benefits and requirements of EACAs, QACAs and ACAs. We will discuss the detailed requirements and benefits of each of the different types of automatic enrollment plans.

An automatic enrollment plan may be a good answer for many employers seeking to maintain or increase employee deferral participation while avoiding a fixed contribution obligation. In this seminar, you’ll learn about:

  • Automatic contribution arrangements (ACAs)
    • State law protection
    • ERISA notice requirements
    • Tax notice requirements
  • Eligible Automatic Contribution Arrangements (EACAs)
    • Expanded eligibility
    • Eligibility options
    • Notice content and timing
    • Permissible withdrawals
    • ADP testing delay
  • Qualified Automatic Contribution Arrangements (QACAs)
    • Minimum deferrals
    • Safe harbor notice content and timing
    • Effect of leave of absence
    • Employer contributions
    • Uniform rates
    • Benefits

There are no prerequisites and no advance preparation required for this program. However, the instructor will assume participants have a basic familiarity with 401(k) plans, including classic safe harbor plans, and have a minimum of one year of experience. The instructor will not assume prior familiarity with automatic enrollment plans of any sort.

Level: Intermediate
Instructional Delivery Method
Group – Internet-Based

NASBA Field of Study: Taxes

Speaker: David Schultz, J.D.


  1. Identify when ACAs, EACAs, or QACAs are an appropriate plan design, and the conditions associated with each automatic enrollment feature
  2. Design an ACA
  3. Design an EACA
  4. Design a QACA
  5. Determine whether the automatic contributions provision provides the ability to delay ADP testing penalty-free
  6. Determine whether the automatic contributions provision permits a participant to withdraw amounts penalty-free from their plan
  7. Determine whether the automatic contributions provision of the plan is a safe harbor
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