Retirement Plan 401k Benefit Plan Sponsors

News & Analysis as of

Automatic enrollment is growing in 401(k) plans

The Plan Sponsor Council of America’s newest annual report shows that in 2015, 25.5% of small 401(k) plans offer automatic enrollment. In their survey, small plans are considered plans with less than 50 participants....more

Fiduciary Rule will clear out the Alphabet Soup of Share Classes

When it comes to mutual funds offered under 401(k) plans, I’ve always believed that the multiple share classes was something out of an alphabet soup. I’m not an advisor, so I don’t know how or why there is so many share...more

A Poet's Guide to Employee Benefits Law - 2017 Edition

The employee benefits world, with all its legal rules and regulations, is viewed by human resources people, financial people, and for that matter most lawyers, as forbidding territory - the "darkest forest" from the Wizard of...more

The Rosenbaum Law Firm Review - December 2016

The Potential Liability of Participant Directed 401(k) Plans. There is a liability lurking there. As children, we were told the story of Jack and The Beanstalk. Jack sells a cow for some "magic beans" and his...more

Your Business Can Fall A Lot Quicker That It Rose

One of the business philosophies I learned while working for third party administrator is that it’s a lot easier to lose a client than to gain one. I know that first hand, seeing bad service that gets plan sponsors to fire...more

ERISA 404(c) lineup are a much bigger headache

When I first started in the business in 1998, daily valued, participant 401(k) plans were starting to become a big deal because the technology caught up with the idea of plan participants directed investments and that their...more

401(k) Plan Sponsor ERISA Fiduciary Litigation Update: Sequoia Fund Litigation

While much of the 401(k) fiduciary litigation in recent years has focused on investment and recordkeeping expenses, a large number of claims filed against 401(k) fiduciaries have alleged that fiduciaries simply made a bad...more

Bundled providers going unbundled makes sense

Someone I know in the industry advised me again how a low cost index fund company was all of a sudden joining together with a well known third party administrator (TPA) in going after smaller plans because their bundled...more

Guide for 401(k) and 403(b) Plan Administrators

While a 401(k) or 403(b) plan has now been the primary retirement planning vehicle in most companies’ benefits program for a decade or more, the way in which companies approach the administration of such plans has varied...more

Advisors Advantage - December 2016

A "Crystal Ball" On Life After The New ERISA Fiduciary Rule. We can see the future if we look closely enough. The Department of Labor's (DOL) new fiduciary rule that is going to go in effect in April 2017 is going...more

The Rosenbaum Law Firm Review - November 2016

Things That Won't Help A Retirement Plan Sponsor Limit Their Liability. Yup, not going to help. When I was a teenager, we were told that eating oat bran would lower cholesterol and it didn't. We're told that...more

401(k) Plan Fee Litigation Update

The wave of fee litigation is ongoing and has significantly increased the responsibility of 401(k) plan fiduciaries to follow well documented, prudent processes to monitor 401(k) plan fees and expenses....more

Face facts: Retirement Plan Sponsors Only Seek Help When They Need It

When I was at that semi-prestigious law firm many moons ago, I developed this plan review called the Retirement Plan Tune-Up. I’d look at the plan document, plan design, costs, the Fiduciary process, basically anything that...more

Are HR employees ‘investment advisors’ under the DOL’s fiduciary rule?

In April 2016, the Department of Labor promulgated final regulations that fundamentally changed the ERISA fiduciary rules governing advisors to retirement income investors. Though the rule is final, the new provisions...more

My opinion on Payroll Provider TPAs

If there is one opinion that I have that is argued about many times it is my two cents in the use of the largest payroll providers being in the Third Party Administration (TPA) business. Usually, the people who criticize my...more

All points lead to more index funds in 401(k) plans

Thanks to the new Fiduciary Rule, I believe that you’re going to see more index funds in 401(k) plans. However, that’s no surprise because that‘s the way we’ve been heading now for the past 15+ years....more

Do You Need to Send an Annual Notice to Plan Participants? If So, You May Need to Do So by December 1, 2016*

Plan sponsors of defined contribution qualified plans may need to issue one or more annual notices to participants before the end of each plan year. Failure to issue a required annual notice can have significant consequences....more

IRS Releases Benefits and Contribution Limits for 2017

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) recently issued its annual update regarding dollar limitations on contributions and benefits applicable to tax-qualified retirement and welfare plans for 2017. Please see full...more

The Rosenbaum Law Firm Review - October 2016

401(k) Sponsors Say Their Plan is OK, but They Really Have No Idea. They really have no idea. When I was dating my wife, she asked me if I had a good credit score and I said I did. I never checked my credit score, but...more

ERISA Fiduciary Issues for Plan Sponsors: What Do 401(k) Plan Fiduciaries Need to Know About Revenue Sharing?

Retirement plan revenue sharing has a bad reputation. Numerous lawsuits have been filed during the past year against employers that sponsor 401(k) plans alleging breach of fiduciary duty under the Employee Retirement Income...more

Sometimes it’s about control

As a retirement plan provider, you meet a potential client and you just do so well in the meeting that you think there should be no way that you’re going to lose this prospect. Yet you get the call that a competing provider...more

The Sky Will Not Fall Because Of The Fiduciary Rule

You’ve heard people screaming up and down about the fiduciary rule. They just had someone screaming that the fiduciary rule is a boon for lawyers (thank you) and that 100,000 to 150,000 advisors will leave the 401(k)...more

How Secure is Your Retirement Plan?

Most employers are generally aware of their fiduciary status as a “plan sponsor” of an ERISA-governed retirement plan (e.g., 401(k) and 403(b) plans). In fact, the employer’s hiring of a service provider is in and of itself a...more

The Rosenbaum Law Firm Review - September 2016 #2

How 401(k) Plan Sponsors Can Improve Their Plan At Little Cost. It doesn't have to cost much. There are many ways that a retirement plan sponsor can improve their 401(k) plan, but they usually balk when it comes...more

Will ERISA litigators live long enough to become the villains?

Everyone knows I love movies and the memorable lines that come from them. I’ma a big fan of The Dark Knight and the line uttered by Aaron Eckhart as Harvey Dent: You either die a hero or you live long enough to see yourself...more

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