Project Update

Disclosure Framework—Disclosure Review: Defined Benefit Plans

Last updated on January 26, 2016. Please refer to the Current Technical Plan for information about the expected release dates of exposure documents and final standards.

(Updated sections are indicated with an asterisk *)

The staff has prepared this summary of Board decisions for information purposes only. Those Board decisions are tentative and do not change current accounting. Official positions of the FASB are determined only after extensive due process and deliberations.

Project Objective and Overview
*Due Process Documents
Decisions Reached at Last Meeting
Tentative Board Decisions Reached to Date
*Next Steps
Board/Other Public Meeting Dates
*Contact Information
 

Project Objective and Overview

The objective and primary focus of the Disclosure Framework project is to improve the effectiveness of disclosures in notes to financial statements by clearly communicating the information that is most important to users of each entity’s financial statements. Achieving the objective of improving effectiveness will require development of a framework that promotes consistent decisions about disclosure requirements by the Board and the appropriate exercise of discretion by reporting entities.

The objective of improving effectiveness will require development of a framework that promotes consistent decisions about disclosure requirements by the Board and the appropriate exercise of discretion by reporting entities. To achieve this objective, the Disclosure Framework project comprises two components: the Board’s Decision Process and the Entity’s Decision Process.

Currently four disclosure areas are being evaluated as part of the Disclosure Framework project. Each review will include (1) evaluation of existing disclosure requirements within the Topic after applying the concepts in the Board’s decision process and (2) promotion of the appropriate use of discretion by entities specifically within the Topic.

This page provides updates on the disclosure review of Defined Benefit Plans (715-20-50). For information on the other three disclosure reviews, see the following:
  1. Inventory (330-10-50)
  2. Fair Value Measurement (820-10-50)
  3. Income Taxes (740-10-50)
Additionally, disclosure requirements for Interim Reporting are being evaluated for modifications.

The FASB staff has developed a “Q&A: FASB’s Disclosure Framework Project” fact sheet which can be viewed here.

*Due Process Documents

On January 26, 2016, the Board issued a proposed Accounting Standards Update, Compensation–Retirement Benefits–Defined Benefit Plans–General (Subtopic 715-20): Changes to the Disclosure Requirements for Defined Benefit Plans. The due date for comment letters is April 25, 2016.

Decisions Reached at Last Meeting (November 2, 2015)

The Board discussed disclosures about defined benefit plans in financial statements of plan sponsors and decided that nonpublic entities would be required to disclose the effects of a one-percentage-point change in assumed health care cost trend rates on the (a) aggregate of the service and interest cost components of net periodic benefit costs and (b) benefit obligation for postretirement health care benefits. This disclosure already is required for public entities.

The Board directed the staff to draft a proposed Accounting Standards Update for vote by written ballot, with a comment period of 90 days.

Tentative Board Decisions Reached to Date (As of November 13, 2015)

Tentative Board Decisions Reached to Date

*Next Steps

The Board will consider feedback on the proposed Accounting Standards Update at a future meeting.

Board/Other Public Meeting Dates

The Board meeting minutes are provided for the information and convenience of constituents who want to follow the Board’s deliberations. All of the conclusions reported are tentative and may be changed at future Board meetings. Decisions become final only after a formal written ballot to issue a final standard.

November 2, 2015 Board Meeting—Defined Benefit Plan Disclosures
July 9, 2015 Board Meeting—Defined Benefit Plan Disclosures
June 29, 2015 Board Meeting—Defined Benefit Plan Disclosures and Transition
August 20, 2014 Board Meeting—Defined Benefit Plan Disclosures and Appropriate Use of Discretion by Reporting Entities
June 11, 2014 Board Meeting—Defined Benefit Plan Disclosures and Potential Changes on the Basis of the Proposed Concepts Statement
April 4, 2014 Board Meeting—Field Study Results and Next Steps

*Contact Information

Nick Cappiello
Supervising Project Manager
ntcappiello@fasb.org

Mark Pollock
Practice Fellow
mapollock@fasb.org

Carter Meneley
Postgraduate Technical Assistant
cdmeneley@fasb.org

Melissa Rutzen
Postgraduate Technical Assistant
marutzen@fasb.org