Top of Mind


07

Jan 2021

The Final Fiduciary Rule: Déjà Vu?

On December 15, the Department of Labor (DOL) released what it calls “Prohibited Transaction Exemption 2020-02, Improving Investment Advice for Workers & Retirees,” more commonly known as the Final Fiduciary Rule. This comes after the Proposed Rule was released on June 29, with the comment period yi…

Read more

17

Dec 2020

My Letter to Santa, 2020 Edition

Dear Santa: Allow me to apologize for not writing to you since 2017. My lack of correspondence should in no way be interpreted as a lack of enthusiasm for considering my inclusion on your nice list, or, even worse, as a lack of belief in your existence. I have been quite busy working with our ret…

Read more

10

Dec 2020

Getting to the Bottom of Financial Wellness for Women

The challenges facing women as they strive to achieve financial wellness are unique - and this year’s pandemic has shed even more light on just how important the topic is. In collaboration with my peers at the Retirement Advisor Council, we look to highlight some of the key elements of this importan…

Read more

03

Dec 2020

Revisiting Predictions: 2020 Retirement Plan Trends

This time last year, I made some predictions as to the hot retirement plan trends for 2020. Needless to say, this year turned out to be quite different than we all expected. But how did that impact our predictions? Let’s take a look: Prediction #1: “Employee Engagement 2.0,” with increased plan sp…

Read more

19

Nov 2020

Plan Termination or Merger?

Whether an organization is looking to scale back the number of defined contribution retirement plans it maintains in order to simplify administration, or is forced to do so due to a merger or acquisition, understanding the difference between types of plan terminations is important. In some situation…

Read more

12

Nov 2020

The Final ESG Rule: What Happened?

A funny thing happened on October 30th when the Department of Labor issued what was to be its final ESG Rule, after the proposed rule was issued on June 23rd. The final rule, which was only eight pages long (after 140 pages of responses to comments from the public), contained no mentions of the term…

Read more

05

Nov 2020

SECURE Act: The Sequel

While I typically don’t write about proposed retirement plan legislation, since bills can take a long time to become law and provisions can change dramatically, I am making an exception for the latest piece of retirement plan legislation, which was introduced on October 27, 2020 by the chair of the …

Read more

29

Oct 2020

Tips for Improving Next Year’s Form 5500 Process

For many ERISA retirement plan sponsors, the first two weeks in October is rough. Why? Because October 15th is the 5500-filing deadline for the majority of calendar year plans. Each year, many plan sponsors scramble to file their 5500s at the absolute last moment. Unfortunately, this rush can increa…

Read more

22

Oct 2020

SECURE Act Refresher

Although it was signed into law on December 20, 2019, it seems like a decade ago that the SECURE Act was headline news. Between the COVID-19 pandemic and the flurry of legislative and regulatory activity in 2020, some plan sponsors have likely forgotten what was, at the time, the first piece of reti…

Read more

15

Oct 2020

Should Retirement Plan Sponsors Be Limiting Plan Loans?

As I have written in the past, I am not a fan of retirement plan loan overutilization, for a variety of reasons. However, loan regulations clearly provide plan sponsors with a great deal of flexibility in this area, including the ability to be overly permissive, quite restrictive, or somewhere in be…

Read more