Top of Mind

Showing entries with the topic “Plan Design”.

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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…

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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…

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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…

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Oct 2020

Why Grandfathering Can Backfire

On paper, grandfathering often sounds like a good idea when a retirement plan change might be perceived by existing employees as being a negative. Implementing auto-enrollment? Let’s not disrupt existing employees and only auto-enroll new ones. Cutting back on employer contributions due to COVID-19?…

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Sep 2020

Why "Six is the New Three" When It Comes to Automatic Enrollment

At last month’s Retirement Advisor Council annual meeting, I had the pleasure of sitting in on a session about participant retirement readiness, where Joe Smith made the statement: “six is the new three” when it comes to automatic enrollment. While I tend to be a sucker for snappy catch phrases, her…

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Aug 2020

More Questionable Retirement Plan Features

In a recent Top of Mind, and in our latest webinar, we shared some questionable plan features that came back to haunt retirement plan sponsors during the COVID-19 pandemic. But there are plenty of other questionable plan features that all too many plan sponsors adopt that can greatly increase plan a…

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Jul 2020

The CARES Act “Run on the Bank” That Wasn’t

Remember back in March when retirement plan recordkeepers were panicking about the COVID-19 pandemic and the related stock market plunge, allegedly fielding record volumes of calls from frantic participants who not only wanted to flee equity investments, but also wanted to take out their money entir…

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Jun 2020

Replacing Mandatory Employee Contributions with Automatic Enrollment

While mandatory contributions are a necessity in defined benefit plans to ensure proper funding, I have never been a proponent of them in defined contribution plans, except when they serve as the only way to make pre-tax contributions to a qualified retirement plan (such as 414(h) pickup contributio…

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May 2020

Reader Mail: More on Roth Conversions

We love reader feedback – and to our excitement, we have been receiving a lot lately! After our recent blog post on Roth Conversions, Jack Towarnicky of the American Retirement Association (check out his blog here), sent us some interesting insights and graciously allowed us to share them with you: …

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