Retirement Plan Benefit Plan Sponsors

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The ERISA Litigation Newsletter - April 2016

Editor's Overview - This month we feature three key developments. First, we review the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in Gobeille v. Liberty Mut. Ins. Co., 136 S. Ct. 936, 947 (2016) wherein the Supreme Court held that a...more

U.S. Department of Labor Issues Final Rule Redefining ERISA’s Definition of “Fiduciary” for Certain Types of Investment Advice

On April 6th, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) released a final rule (the “Fiduciary Rule”) that expands the types of retirement investment advice that will be subject to the fiduciary duty rules of the Employee Retirement...more

New Fiduciary Rule & Its Impact on Retirement Advice for Plan Sponsors

After much controversy and criticism, the Department of Labor (DOL) issued a final conflict of interest rule on April 6th (the “Final Rule”) which expands the definition of a fiduciary for an “employee benefit plan,” as...more

IRS: Don’t Answer All the 5500 Questions!

The 2015 Form 5500 added some new optional compliance questions for the 2015 Forms 5500 and 5500-SF. In December 2015, the IRS issued frequently asked questions on the new compliance questions and strongly encouraged plan...more

Employer Action Required Following Issuance of Final Rule

On April 8, 2016, the Department of Labor (DOL) released the much anticipated final regulation to broaden the scope of fiduciary status under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) and the Internal...more

The DOL Fiduciary Definition Regulations are Here . . . Really They are Finally Here

Included in the definition of a fiduciary in Section 3(21) of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (“ERISA”) is someone who provides investment advice for a fee. Regulations issued in 1975 by the U.S. Department of...more

Offering an education is a must for Advisors

I had a few advisors who asked me about offering investment education as it pertained to the fiduciary rule, but it’s clear that the Department of Labor wants it offered when it made a carve out to the final rule to allow for...more

No such thing as assembly line Retirement Plans

Henry T. Ford is considered the father or the pioneer of the modern day assembly line of manufacturing. His development of the Model T and its way of manufacturing is considered one of the great developments in 20th century...more

What Plan Sponsors Need to Know About the New Fiduciary Regulation and Related PT Exemptions

What Plan Sponsors Need to Know Now - On April 5, 2016, the U.S. Department of Labor released a new definition of what constitutes a fiduciary to a retirement plan. While the new guidance clarified that certain...more

Department of Labor Issues Final Fiduciary Rule

The Department of Labor (DOL) has issued a final rule to re-define who is rendered a "fiduciary" of an employee benefit plan under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) by providing investment advice to a plan...more

Always Be Watching

Who can forget Alec Baldwin’s speech in Glengarry Glenn Ross on how salesmen should “Always Be Closing” and how coffee is for closers only? It was the highpoint of a great movie. I’m not going to go through a discussion...more

Advisors Advantage - April 2016

The Struggles Of Being A Retirement Plan Provider And How To Manage It. What you have to deal with. Being a retirement plan provider is like any other business in the sense that it has to be managed in a way...more

The Rosenbaum Law Firm Review - March 2016

Things About Plan Providers That Shouldn't Impress Plan Sponsors. Don't get bamboozled. There are certain things in life we really should be impressed by, but we always end up being impressed by the wrong...more

Don't Be a Target -- Retirement Plan Fees and Expenses

A rising number of challenges are being initiated by the plaintiffs’ bar and U.S. Department of Labor investigators in the area of retirement plan asset charges and retirement plan expenses. Some employers have had to pay...more

They will always try to sell Plan Sponsors something

When I was a kid, there were two varieties of Cheerios, one version of Listerine, and one type of Crest toothpaste. If you got to the supermarket these days, there are about a dozen varieties of Cheerios, more than a half...more

Why So Serious? Try Some Humor.

When I worked at that law firm, I always felt I was Al Czervik, the Rodney Dangerfield character from Caddyshack while the Managing Attorney was like Judge Elihu Smails or maybe Smails’ wife since the Managing Attorney was...more

The End of an Era—IRS Issues Additional Guidance on End of Determination Letter Application Program

In 2015, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced changes to its existing determination letter program, namely that the staggered remedial amendment cycle for individually designed retirement plans would end effective...more

IRS Expands Ability of Safe Harbor Plan Sponsors to Make Mid-Year Changes

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) recently issued Notice 2016-16, which provides safe harbor 401(k) plan sponsors with increased flexibility to make mid-year plan changes. Notice 2016-16 sets forth new rules for when and...more

Plan Sponsors’ Short Term Focus on Funds

An MFS Defined Contribution Investment Trends Study found that nearly 6 in 10 retirement plan sponsors surveyed say they consider a track record of three years or less when selecting managers. Is that really a surprise?...more

New Guidance From IRS Provides Mid-Year Changes To Safe Harbor 401(k) Plans

Prior to the Internal Revenue Services' (IRS) recent issuance of Notice 2016-16 (the Notice), employers that sponsored safe harbor 401(k) retirement plans were uncertain about whether any mid-year changes to their plans would...more

Advisors Advantage - March 2016

What A Retirement Plan Financial Advisor Needs And Where To Get It. Stuff you need and where you can find it. A checklist is an informational aid that is used to reduce failure by compensating for the lack of...more

At Last . . . My Safe Harbor Guidance Has Come Along

At last . . . the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) finally provides mid-year safe harbor guidance. Etta James’s legendary cover of that song is fitting considering the many years that employers have waited to receive this...more

IRS Proposes Nondiscrimination Testing Relief for Closed Pension Plans

In order for its participants to receive favorable tax treatment, a “qualified” retirement plan must satisfy various requirements, including ensuring that it benefits a nondiscriminatory cross-section of employees rather than...more

Experience can mean a lot of things

I always talk about how plan sponsors need to work with experienced financial advisors, third party administration (TPA) firms, and ERISA attorneys on their plan needs. Like with reasonable fees, I believe that the term...more

Good News for Safe Harbor Plan Sponsors: The IRS Will Allow Mid-Year Changes

On January 29, 2016, the Internal Revenue Service issued guidance on mid-year changes to safe harbor plans under Internal Revenue Code Sections 401(k), and 401(m). Notice 2016-16 significantly expands the permissible mid-year...more

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