February 12, 2019

2019 Inflationary Adjustments to Certain Reporting and Disclosure Failures (article)

Failure to abide by certain reporting and disclosure obligations could result in civil penalties assessed by the Department of Labor (DOL).  These civil penalties may be adjusted at certain times for inflationary reasons due to enactment of the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act Improvements Act of 2015. Below are select inflationary adjustments published by the DOL’s Employee Benefit Security Administration. These amounts became effective for penalties assessed on or after January 23, 2019.


2019 Penalty Amount

2018 Penalty Amount

Failure or refusal to file the annual Form 5500 return/report

Up to $2,194 per day

Up to $2,140 per day

Failure to file Form M-1

Up to $1,597 per day

Up to $1,558 per day

Failure to provide Summary of Benefits and Coverage (SBC)

Up to $1,156 per failure

Up to $1,128 per failure

Failure to notify employees of Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) coverage opportunities

Up to $117 per day

Up to $114 per day


It should also be noted that several penalty adjustments apply to the protections afforded under the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA).  For example, individuals denied access to group health coverage based on his/her genetic information could result in civil penalties of up to $117 per day of noncompliance (up from $114 per day).

An employer subject to the federal Family and Medical Leave Act is required to post a notice in their work site locations that summarizes the major provisions of the Family and Medical Leave Act.   Failure to post this notice could result in a civil money penalty assessed by the DOL’s Wage and Hour Division of up to $173 per each separate offense (up from $169).  The model FMLA work place poster is available in both English and Spanish from the DOL’s Wage and Hour Division’s website

The information contained in this article is provided as general guidance and may be affected by changes in law or regulation. This article is not intended to replace or substitute for accounting or other professional advice. Please consult a CBIZ professional. This information is provided as-is with no warranties of any kind. CBIZ shall not be liable for any damages whatsoever in connection with its use and assumes no obligation to inform the reader of any changes in laws or other factors that could affect the information contained herein.

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