Highlights of "The Multiemployer Retirement Plan Landscape: A Ten-Year Look (2006-2015)" based on data from Form 5500 Annual Reports filed with the U.S. Department of Labor.

Managing Pension Risk by Cary Franklin, Benefits Magazine, October 2018, Pages 16-26

Multiemployer defined benefit pension plans can effectively manage pension risk through policies governing benefit design, funding and investments.

Understanding Reciprocity Agreements by Michael A. Evand and Jamie L. Reyes-Jones, Benefits Magazine, August 2017, Pages 22-27

When multiemployer plan participants work outside of their union local jurisdiction, they can continue to earn pension credit and maintain health coverage if a reciprocity agreement is in place.

Funding Improvement and Rehabilitation Plans 101 by Jacqueline A. Kelly, Benefits Magazine, October 2016, Pages 48-54

Many multiemployer defined benefit pension plans have been required to develop a funding improvement or rehabilitation plan. This article explains what trustees must do to adopt and implement the plan.

Creating a Funding Policy by Cary Franklin, Benefits Magazine, July 2016, Pages 16-25

A set of rules that create a formal connection between employer contributions and benefits - a funding policy - may help a multiemployer benefit plan weather economic downturns with minimal changes in contributions or benefits.

Multiemployer Pension Plan Reform: How Will the New Rules Impact Employers and Employees by William P. Sweeney and Robert E. Entin, Benefits Magazine, April 2015, pages 22-26

This article takes an early look at the Multiemployer Pension Reform Act of 2014 (MPRA). MPRA is designed to boost the PBGC's financial state and let plan sponsors make certain design modifications, including suspending future and present pension benefits to avoid insolvency.

An Integrated Approach to Pension Benefits by William J. Ruschau, Benefits Magazine, November 2013, pages 26-31

Combining both a traditional pension plan and defined contribution plan, and adding a mechanism to turn the DC savings into a lifetime income option may resolve some shortcomings of retirement plans.

Setting the Pension Funding Target: Why Expected Return Matters by Josh Shapiro and Cary Franklin, Benefits Magazine, November 2013, pages 16-25

The authors describe two approaches to determining pension obligations and measuring how well-funded a pension plan is. They believe a traditional approach, which predicts a return on investment on plan assets, is the best choice for multiemployer plans.      

Changing From a DB to a DC Plan in the Multiemployer World by Laure van Heijenoort, Benefits Magazine, July 2013, pages 15-19

Although switching from a defined benefit to a defined contribution pension plan can have advantages for multiemployer plan sponsors, trustees will be required to make a number of decisions.      

Hours Bank (Benefit Basics) by Joseph A. Brislin, Benefits Magazine,  December 2011, pages 12-13

What is an hours bank system? How does it relate to workers' eligibility for benefits?

Why Serve as a Trustee? by Joseph A. Brislin, Benefits Magazine, July 2011, pages 38-43

Someone willing to put in the time and effort it takes to be the trustee of a multiemployer fund receives the benefits of education and a chance to improve peoples' lives and the industry he or she works in.

Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp. (PBGC) Web Resources on Multiemployer Plans:

Introduction to Multiemployer Plans
Establishment of Current Multiemployer Program
Withdrawal Liability
Funding & Other Notices
Multiemployer Benefit Guarantees
Premium Rates
Pension Insurance Data Tables 2016 (see Multiemployer Data Tables M1-M20)

Internal Revenue Manual Multiemployer Examination Guidelines:

Employee Plans Guidelines for Examining Multiemployer Plans
, Internal Revenue Service (IRS), May 2001