29 CFR 4204.1 - Purpose and scope.
(a)Purpose. Under section 4204 of ERISA, an employer that ceases covered operations under a multiemployer plan, or ceases to have an obligation to contribute for such operations, because of a bona fide, arm's-length sale of assets to an unrelated purchaser does not incur withdrawal liability if certain conditions are met. One condition is that the sale contract provide that the seller will be secondarily liable if the purchaser withdraws from the plan within five years and does not pay its withdrawal liability. Another condition is that the purchaser furnish a bond or place funds in escrow, for a period of five plan years, in a prescribed amount. Section 4204 also authorizes the PBGC to provide for variances or exemptions from these requirements. Subpart B of this part provides variances and exemptions from the requirements for certain sales of assets. Subpart C of this part establishes procedures under which a purchaser or seller may, when the conditions set forth in subpart B are not satisfied or when the parties decline to provide certain financial information to the plan, request the PBGC to grant individual or class variances or exemptions from the requirements.
(b)Scope. In general, this part applies to any sale of assets described in section 4204(a)(1) of ERISA. However, this part does not apply to a sale of assets involving operations for which the seller is obligated to contribute to a plan described in section 404(c) of the Code, or a continuation of such a plan, unless the plan is amended to provide that section 4204 applies.