News & Analysis as of

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

Liabilities and Risk from Failing to Address the Cybersecurity of Your Retirement Plan Data

In the current 114th session of Congress, there have been 204 bills, resolutions and amendments introduced addressing cybersecurity in their text, if you had any doubt about whether you should be concerned about cybersecurity...more

Top US Universities Hit with Retirement Plan Lawsuits: Lessons for Plan Sponsors

The recent wave of 403(b) lawsuits against more than a dozen prominent US universities could herald similar suits for other 403(b) plan sponsors. Plan sponsors can minimize their risk by reviewing their plan governance...more

The theory of “Peak 401(k) Fee Litigation”

I always loved the movie Donnie Brasco, it’s a great story about the non-glamarous side of organized crime. As part of a crew captained by Sonny Black, Lefty Ruggiero played by Al Pacino is hammering away to get the change...more

Reports on Increase in Retirement Plan Audits Further Illustrate the Need for Plan Sponsors to Focus on Administrative Compliance

In Depth - Recent reports show that the number of retirement plan audits by government agencies is increasing. A survey released by Willis Towers Watson indicates that one in every three plan sponsors has experienced a...more

The Rosenbaum Law Firm Review - September 2016

What Makes A 401(k) Plan A Target For Litigation. Don't be a mark. I've always been a big fan of 1970's cinema and one forgotten classic is The Sting, starring Paul Newman, Robert Redford, and Robert Shaw. The title to...more

401(k) Litigation: The Next Frontier

With the proliferation of litigation against 401(k) plans, it should be noted that it focuses on only one thing: cost. Litigation surrounding share classes, proprietary funds, and overall plan expenses is all about plan...more

DOL Significantly Increases Certain ERISA Civil Penalties Effective August 2, 2016

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has significantly increased a number of civil monetary penalty amounts (CMPs) that may be assessed by the DOL's Employee Benefits Security Administration for violations of Title I of the...more

When you should step aside and let someone else speak

One of my least favorite days during the year is my birthday because I’ve been accustomed to it being a so-so to a bad day. I took my Criminal Law final on that day during my first year at law school and I was abandoned by my...more

Advisors Advantage - August 2016

Why 401(k) Plan Providers Should Push Automatic Enrollment. It just makes sense. We have a retirement crisis in this country thanks to a Social Security program that has too many retirees to pay to, and the death...more

Proposed Changes to Form 5500 Reporting Requirements May Have Significant Impact on Retirement Plan Sponsors

On July 11, 2016, the Department of Labor (DOL), Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) announced a proposal to implement sweeping changes to the forms and regulations that govern...more

Fidelity Prevails In ERISA Float Litigation

The First Circuit joined the Eighth Circuit in finding that Fidelity’s practice of earning overnight “float” interest on the cash paid out to 401(k) participants redeeming shares in mutual funds did not violate ERISA’s duty...more

The Problem With Providers Using Their Own Funds In Their 401(k) Plan

I always say that I come up with many ideas, but most of them are bad. Seriously, there are so many bad ideas out there in the 401(k) space and one of the really bad ideas out there are bundled plan providers using their own,...more

Private Investment Fund Managers and Other Investment Advisers May Be Affected by the U.S. Department of Labor’s New Fiduciary...

On April 6, 2016, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) issued its highly anticipated final rule addressing when a person is considered to be a fiduciary under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) and the...more

401(k) Litigation Overkill?

The landscape for the retirement plan business has radically changed since when I first started in 1998. Normal courses of business such as revenue sharing and non-transparency of fees were the order of the day. No one cared...more

Big Fish and Service Provider Lawsuits

It seems like every week, there is another major lawsuit against a plan sponsor and one of their service providers. Allegations of impropriety are just allegations until decided by a trier of fact of whether they are...more

Employee Benefits Innovators Roundtable: Fiduciary Update and the DOL Fiduciary Rule

The US Department of Labor’s new fiduciary rule is aimed at financial advisors, including brokers, who provide retirement plan services. However, the new rule will impact compliance obligations and potentially, costs for plan...more

Advisors Advantage - July 2016

How Retirement Plan Providers Can Deal With The Fiduciary Rule Change. Adapt to this change. At its prime, Blockbuster Video had 9,000 stores and was actually bought by Viacom in 1994 for $8.4 billion. Then some...more

The Rosenbaum Law Firm Review - July 2016

The Future Is Now For 401(k) Plan Sponsors. The future is here. When I was the head ERISA attorney at a New York based third party administrator (TPA), I left because I saw the future of the retirement plan...more

The Final DOL Fiduciary Rule—Considerations for Plan Sponsors

The final rule has implications for plan sponsors and may impact certain relationships with service providers. On April 6, after a long (and some might say tortured) process, the US Department of Labor (DOL) issued a...more

Advisors Advantage - June 2016

How to Communicate and Understand Retirement Plan Sponsors. There is a method to it. Being a retirement plan provider isn't just about selling services, it's really about selling yourself and you can't sell yourself...more

401(k) Plan Sponsors and Fiduciaries Face an Alarming Number of Stable Value Fund and Other Class Action Lawsuits

In the last several months, plaintiffs have filed multiple class action lawsuits against plan sponsors, plan fiduciaries and stable value fund providers. These lawsuits, which have involved 401(k) plans sponsored by large...more

The Rosenbaum Law Firm Review - June 2016

The New Fiduciary Rule: What It Means To Plan Sponsors - Bottom line: what does it mean? More than a dozen years ago, there was a medical report that dental plaque could cause heart disease. I thought it was some...more

Why a Plan Sponsor Should Seek Out a Retirement Plan "Dentist"

More than a dozen years ago, there was a medical report that dental plaque could cause heart disease. I thought it was some sort of dental conspiracy to increase revenue as fluoridated water and other dental hygiene has had...more

The Brave New Fiduciary World Has Arrived – The DOL Tries to Find a More Ideal Balance in the Final “Investment Advice” Rules

The U.S. Department of Labor (the “DOL”) on April 6, 2016 released the final version of its “investment advice” regulation and accompanying prohibited transaction exemptions, a highly-anticipated milestone that is the...more

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