The Senate Mark includes a number of changes relating to employee benefit programs and qualified defined contribution plans, effective for tax years beginning after 2017.

The Senate Mark is largely consistent with the House bill in repealing certain exclusions and deductions for expenses relating to entertainment, amusement and recreation activities and moving and relocation expenses. However, the Senate Mark does not contain provisions included in the House bill repealing the deductions, exclusions or credits for qualifying employer-sponsored education expenses, employee achievement awards, adoption assistance programs and, from 2023, dependent care expenses.

The Senate Mark eliminates catch-up contributions to qualified defined contribution plans for employees age 50 or older (up to $6,000 for 2017) for any employee who received wages of $500,000 or more in the prior year. The Senate Mark does not affect regular employee contribution limits ($18,000 for 2017). The House bill does not include any regular or catch up contribution limits for any employees but does include other provisions relating to defined contribution plans that are not included in the Senate Mark, including allowing for in-service distributions at age 59½ (rather than 62) and making certain participant-friendly changes to the hardship distribution rules and 401(k) loan rollover period.

For our summaries of the House bill’s provisions relating to employee benefits and qualified retirement plans, click here and here.