On Friday, May 28, 2021, the Congressional Research Service (“CRS”) released its analysis of Multiemployer Defined Benefit Pension Plans (“MEPPs”) that are potentially eligible for special financial assistance under the American Rescue Plan Act, 2021 (“ARPA”). As we previously discussed in our article on ARPA’s special assistance for financially troubled MEPPs, a MEPP is eligible for financial assistance if it meets at least one of the following conditions:
- It is in critical and declining status in any plan year from 2020 through 2022;
- It had an application to suspend benefits under MPRA-approved prior to the enactment of ARPA (March 11, 2021);
- It is in critical status in any plan year from 2020 through 2022, has a modified funded percentage of less than 40% (calculated as the current value of plan assets divided by the present value of plan liabilities, using a specified interest rate), and the ratio of active to inactive participants in the plan is less than 2:3; or
- It became insolvent after December 14, 2014, and was not terminated by the date of enactment of ARPA.
At the time of ARPA’s enactment, the Congressional Budge Office estimated that 185 MEPPs could qualify for $86 billion in financial assistance. CRS’s report provides a comprehensive listing of each MEPP that is potentially eligible for special financial assistance under ARPA based on the eligibility criteria set forth above (and identifies the criteria under which each MEPP is potentially eligible).