401k Retirement Plan

News & Analysis as of

IRS Issues Substantiation Guidelines for Safe-Harbor Hardship Withdrawals

Earlier this year, the IRS issued a memorandum setting forth substantiation guidelines for IRS auditors examining whether a 401(k) plan hardship distribution is “deemed to be on account of an immediate and heavy financial...more

Don’t hire relatives as your plan providers

I have some simple rules to live by. I never bet on the Mets, eat at a place called Mom’s, play cards with a guy named Doc, or do business with family. Yet I have come across so many financial advisors who bemoan to me...more

Did Hardship Distributions Just Get Easier?

In a previous blog, we addressed an issue of Employee Plans News in which the IRS took the position that 401(k) plan administrators must maintain hardship distribution records and should not rely on electronic participant...more

Advisors Advantage - February 2017

How You Can Stand Out From The Crowd As A Retirement Plan Advisor. It would be a detriment to focus only on this stuff. There are lots of financial advisors who claim they handle retirement plans, but there are...more

Guidance to IRS Examiners on 401(k)/403(b) Hardship Withdrawals

Substantiation Requirement Clarified for Examination Purposes - Over the past few years, employers and plan administrators have frequently asked how hardship withdrawal requests can/should be substantiated from 401(k)...more

Are You Keeping the Right Documentation for 401(k) Hardship Distributions?

401(k) plans may allow an employee to receive a distribution of elective contributions (employee deferrals) on account of a hardship. The regulations provide that a distribution is made on account of hardship only if the...more

DOL Proposes 60-Day Delay of Fiduciary Rule in Response to White House Directive

The future of the fiduciary rule—originally set to be implemented this upcoming April—remains uncertain after the White House directed the United States Department of Labor (DOL) to reevaluate, defer implementation and...more

IRS Issues Substantiation Guidelines for 401(k) Hardship Distributions

On February 23, 2017, the Internal Revenue Service issued a “Memorandum for Employee Plans (EP) Examinations Employees,” outlining Substantiation Guidelines for safe harbor hardship distributions from 401(k) plans...more

401(k) Plan Design and its Effect on Employees’ Retirement Readiness

Most American adults are concerned that they will not be able to retire or will outlive their retirement income. In fact, research shows that Americans are not saving enough for retirement. This retirement crisis is, in part,...more

IRS Allows 401k Plan Safe Harbor and ADP ACP Corrective Contributions to be Funded from Forfeitures

We are pleased to bring you some good news for 401(k) plans from the IRS. The IRS just issued a proposed regulation that allows safe harbor contributions to a 401(k) plan, or employer contributions used to correct a...more

The Rosenbaum Law Firm Review - February 2017

Why an Employer Should Sponsor A 401(k) Plan. Lots of good reasons. As an employer, a big reason for setting up a retirement plan is because it's an employee benefit and it can be used to recruit and retain...more

Sometimes Plan Sponsors just want to throw you off their “scent”

When you meet retirement plan sponsors just at different networking events and they find out that you’re a retirement plan provider, they may volunteer that their retirement plan is in perfect shape. As we know as retirement...more

Education is an important part of the fiduciary process

Advisors ask me all the time of the role of education in participant directed 401(k) plans. Participant directed 401(k) plans that are governed under ERISA §404(c) offer the plan sponsors liability protection based on a...more

The Problem With Loans

When I draft a new 401(k) plan for a client, I’ll recommend a loan provision even though it can be an administrative headache. The reason that I add it because I think participants need to have access to money if in their...more

Being a Plan Sponsor is all about the Process

Imagine a diet where it doesn’t matter how much weight you lost. Imagine a golf game that wasn’t about your score. Imagine about a job and not how much money you make. Being a plan sponsor isn’t about a specific result, it’s...more

Dealing with New IRS Qualification Requirements for Pension, Profit Sharing and 401(k) Plans, Effective January 1, 2017

The procedures for qualification of an employer sponsored individually designed pension, profit sharing or 401(k) plan for favorable tax deferred treatment under the Internal Revenue Code (“Code”) changed significantly...more

Advisors Advantage - February 2017

Concepts That Retirement Plan Advisors Shouldn't Focus On. It would be a detriment to focus only on this stuff. Being a financial advisor isn't as easy as many people on the outside think. There are so many things you ...more

"Change in Administration Presents Opportunity to Revisit DOL Fiduciary Rule"

In 2016, regulatory developments introduced fundamental changes in the legal standards that govern the relationship of broker-dealers with their customers. Although the changes are not applicable until April 10, 2017, most in...more

Some TPA Humor

I worked 9 years working as an ERISA attorney for a couple of third party administrators (TPA) and I always felt like I was a fireman because I put out a lot of compliance fires for our clients and sometimes, it was our...more

The Rosenbaum Law Firm Review - January 2017

Concepts You May Not Be Aware Of As A 401(k) Plan Sponsor. Quite a few things out there. As a child, I was never taught the birds and the bees. I was actually handed some cartoon book from my parents when I was...more

Newly Proposed IRS Rules Permit the Use of Forfeitures for QNECs and QMACs

On January 18, 2017, the IRS issued proposed regulations that expand the permitted uses of forfeitures in a 401(k) plan. Under the proposed rules, the definitions of “qualified nonelective contributions” (QNECs) and...more

The ERISA Litigation Newsletter - January 2017

Editor’s Overview - In 2016, we saw a considerable uptick in the number and variety of excessive fee lawsuits commenced against plan fiduciaries of defined contribution plans. We begin the year by taking a look at these...more

IRS Relaxes Rules on Use of Forfeitures to Fund Safe Harbor Contributions and QNECs to 401(k) Plans

The IRS recently issued welcome guidance for sponsors of 401(k) plans. On January 18th, the IRS issued proposed regulations that permit forfeitures to be used to fund the employer’s safe harbor contributions, qualified...more

Excessive Fee Litigation

Over the years, we have seen numerous class action lawsuits against plan fiduciaries, starting with claims relating to mega 401(k) plans and, more recently, claims against the fiduciaries of very large University-sponsored,...more

Important Changes to the IRS Determination Letter Program for Retirement Plans

The Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) has modified procedures governing favorable determination letters for individually designed qualified retirement plans, including 401(k), profit sharing, defined benefit, and cash balance...more

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