Retirement Plan

News & Analysis as of

Fighting the Fiduciary Rule Before It’s Been Even Proposed

Not long after President Obama expressed the desire that the Department of Labor (DOL) implement a fiduciary rule for brokers who work on retirement plans; did one of Wall Street’s paid minions strike back....more

The White House wants a new fiduciary rule

The White House unveiled their plan to direct the Department of Labor to unveil a new fiduciary standard rule that will curb the conflict of interest and excessive fees that the White House says that mars 401(k) and IRA...more

White House Budget Proposal Includes Many Retirement-Related Provisions

On February 2, 2015, the White House released its Fiscal Year 2016 Budget, which includes a number of tax code changes targeting retirement savings. If enacted as presented, the proposals would have a significant effect on...more

Court Permits Beneficiary Designations By Telephone

In a somewhat surprising case, the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit has ruled that a participant may change his prior written beneficiary designation by a telephone call to the plan sponsor. The Becker v....more

2015 Tax Update Letter

Dear Clients and Colleagues: This letter is an update on the most recent estate and gift tax developments and serves as a follow-up to our past yearly tax updates, which can be accessed by clicking the “Family Wealth...more

Dead Hand Provisions: A Lesson for Lenders from the Delaware Chancery Court

In Pontiac General Employees Retirement System v. Ballantine, et al., the Delaware Chancery Court refused to dismiss a claim against a lender for aiding and abetting a breach of fiduciary duty by the borrower’s directors. ...more

A great Retirement Plan? It’s not in the water.

I love bagels and one of the greatest debates out there is what makes them great. People swear up and down that it’s the water from New York. They believe it so much so that there are businesses who advertise that they either...more

Hardship Withdrawal Requests should have documentation

A few weeks back, an advisor told me that a large bundled provider is offering some sort of hardship withdrawal service that allows participants to get a quick withdrawal as long as they state that they have an immediate and...more

Tread Carefully with Plan Provider Referrals

As a retirement plan provider, you are often asked to give a referral to other retirement plan providers. If you are a financial advisor, you maybe asked for a referral for a third party administrator or an ERISA attorney....more

IRS Required Restatement of Retirement Plan

Every six years, the Internal Revenue Service requires that all pre-approved volume submitter and prototype retirement plan documents be updated and restated. The current restatement period will incorporate provisions from...more

SEC Examination Priorities for 2015

We recently sent you an email about FINRA’s Examination Priorities for 2015. The SEC has now released its 2015 Examination Priorities, and it continues the trend of focusing on rollovers. This email discusses the SEC concerns...more

February and March Filing and Notice Deadlines for Qualified Retirement and Health and Welfare Plans

Employers and plan sponsors must comply with numerous filing and notice deadlines for their retirement and health and welfare plans. Failure to comply with these deadlines can result in costly penalties. To avoid such...more

The Rosenbaum Law Firm Review - February 2015

In This Issue: - Small Steps That Plan Sponsors Can Take To Limit Their Fiduciary Liability - "Plain" Advice to Retirement Plan Sponsors - Pick Plan Providers Just Because They Are Cheap Is A Bad...more

Small Steps That Plan Sponsors Can Take To Limit Their Fiduciary Liability

When it comes to our health, small preventative steps can help us avoid greater harm to our health later down the line. We have been told of the great health benefits of taking baby aspirin for heart health and how we can...more

2015: This Is The Year Ahead: Summary Of Likely Trends And Legislative Developments Across Asia This Year

In This Issue: China; Hong Kong; Japan; Korea; and Singapore. Excerpt from Korea: The Korean government is proposing to amend the Employee Retirement Benefit Securities Act to promote the implementation...more

California Public Employees’ Pension Reform Act Of 2013 Partially Violates Prohibition Against Impairment Of Contracts When...

In Deputy Sheriffs' Association of San Diego County v. County of San Diego, et al., (January 11, 2015, D065364) 2015 WL 273138, the Fourth District Court of Appeal held that the provisions of the California Public Employees'...more

Illinois Becomes the First State to Require Automatic Retirement Savings Program for Workers Without Access to a Workplace...

On January 5, 2015, outgoing Governor Quinn signed landmark legislation that created the “Secure Choice Savings Plan” which will give Illinois workers who do not have the option to participate in a workplace retirement...more

“Plain” Advice to Retirement Plan Sponsors

I don’t know about you, most of the advice I got growing up was usually wrong. Maybe some very unsuccessful people surrounded me when I was younger, but advice can be biased and self-serving at times. The best advice I would...more

The Directed Trustee in the Post-Dudenhoeffer World

Overview - Court cases challenging the actions of Employee Retirement Income Security Act fiduciaries have continued unabated since the scandal of Enron in 2002. Since then, a large number of cases are in the ‘‘stock...more

The New Illinois Secure Choice Savings Program: Considerations for Employers

On January 4, 2015, the governor of Illinois signed into law the Illinois Secure Choice Savings Program Act (S.B. 2758). This law—first of its kind in the nation—requires certain employers to provide an automatic payroll...more

Patent Infringement Lawsuit Reminds ERISA Fiduciaries to Monitor Service Providers

In August 2014, GRQ Investment Management, LLC (GRQ) sued Financial Engines, Inc. and Financial Engines Advisors, LLC (collectively, Financial Engines), alleging that Financial Engines’ sale of account management and advisory...more

DOL Investigations: A Shift in Focus

The Issue: During a recent Department of Labor (“DOL”) investigation for a local California employer, we experienced an increased focus by the DOL on plan expenses. While this isn’t necessarily surprising given the increased...more

OCIE Publishes Exam Priorities for 2015

The National Exam Program of the SEC’s Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations (OCIE) published its examination priorities for 2015 this week. (Last week, FINRA published its priorities, discussed here.) Many of the...more

Most Attorneys are not ERISA Attorneys

Unfortunately, I have gotten involved in the politics of my local village which contains so much conflicts of interest and cronyism, it reminds me of the retirement plan business when I started in 1998. A lot of the fighting...more

Focusing too much on Plan fees isn’t healthy either

I remember as a kid that there was move to use margarine because of the cholesterol that was in butter. Who can forget those talking Parkay carton commercials? Of course, we later learn that many margarines had high amounts...more

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