MMC Benefits Handbook
How to Use this Section of the Benefits Handbook
This section of the Benefits Handbook summarizes the Benefit Equalization Plan. The BEP is a non-qualified retirement plan designed to rely on many of the provisions of the Marsh & McLennan Companies Retirement Plan (Retirement Plan). For the most part, this section describes rules that are unique to the BEP and provides cross-references to the Marsh & McLennan Companies Retirement Plan section where a provision relies on the underlying Retirement Plan
In 2004 Congress enacted the American Jobs Creation Act which provided for a substantial change in the way non-qualified retirement plans such as the BEP can pay benefits. A benefit that is either accrued or vested after December 31, 2004, or is paid according to plan terms that were introduced after October 3, 2004, is subject to IRC Section 409A and is referred to as a 409A BEP Benefit throughout this section of the Benefits Handbook.
At the time the American Jobs Creation Act went into effect, the Company elected to take steps to preserve prior tax rules for benefits that were accrued and vested as of December 31, 2004, provided they were paid according to plan terms in effect on October 3, 2004. This is referred to as a Grandfathered BEP Benefit throughout this section of the Benefits Handbook.
This section of the Benefits Handbook addresses the payment rules imposed by IRC Section 409A first and then addresses the grandfathered benefits subject to prior tax rules. There are cross-references to indicate where grandfathered rules might apply.
As you read this section, please look for indications that a cross reference applies and be sure to access the details for a complete understanding of the BEP.