Effective immediately, we’ll be filing “one-man” returns electronically. The advantage is that we’ll have immediately proof of filing and won’t have to deal with “non-filed” or “late-filed” letters from the IRS. That’s all you really need to know; we’ll give detailed instructions and help you with the filing, but for background information see below.
“One-man” plan* tax returns can generally file a paper Form 5500-EZ, which is mailed, or a shortened version of Form 5500-SF, which is filed electronically. Paper/mailed returns are susceptible to getting lost, whereas electronically filed returns receive an immediate confirmation of filing. The downside of filing electronically was that, until 2012, those returns were subject to public disclosure on the DOL website, whereas paper forms were not made public. If you were a “one-man” plan sponsor, we made the decision for you that you’d just as soon not have everyone in the world know how much is in your plan, and have always prepared the paper form for you to file by mail.
The government wants to encourage electronic filing, and as of 2012, has restricted public access to “one-man” Form SF filings. We welcome the change and will be filing electronically from now on. (If for some reason you still want to file by mail please let us know.)
*”One-man” plans can cover a single owner, as well as an owner and spouse, with some other limited instances where there might be more than a single participant.