Retirement Plans

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May 7, 2008

Here are the Web's best new links about compliance and cost aspects of plan operation, design and policy.

Today's sponsor is SunGard

(Click on company name or banner to learn more.)
Banner ad for SunGard

SunGard’s Relius Government Forms 5500 Web Client

Did you know the DOL is requiring electronic filing for 5500s? Now is the time to encourage your clients to use the Internet to gather and verify data. SunGard's Relius Government Forms 5500 Web Client can help.

Learn more.

800-326-7235, ext. 1100.

[Guidance Overview] 401(k) Fee Litigation
Excerpt: "Over the past several years, more than two dozen lawsuits have been filed relating to 401(k) plan fees and, more specifically, 'revenue sharing' arrangements with plan service providers. . . . In addition to the lawsuits against plan sponsors, lawsuits have been brought against 401(k) plan service providers. These cases typically are based on allegations that the service providers are 'functional fiduciaries' under ERISA. [At the target page, links are provided to an outline and a chart on the issues.]" (Groom Law Group)

New York State Pension Abuse Issue Draws Legislation
Excerpt: "As Attorney General Andrew Cuomo and Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli continue their crackdowns on alleged abuses of the state pension system, lawmakers are starting to take action with proposed legislation. The bills come in the wake of recent media reports of school lawyers and other educational administrators accruing benefits from the state pension system they may not have been entitled to." (

Plan Sponsors Focus on Investment Monitoring and Decision Making
Excerpt: "The Pension Protection Act has changed patterns in savings and reporting, reports Grant Thornton LLP in its 2008 Plan Sponsor Retirement study. Plan sponsors are placing a greater emphasis on using investment policy statements. More than 80% of organizations have one in place, and 40% are reviewing their IPS consistently, indicates the Chicago-based consulting firm." (Employee Benefit News; free registration required)

Understanding Changes During Retirement: Results of Two Studies Webcast, April 2008 (PDF)
55 pages. (Society of Actuaries)

One-Fourth of Participants Have Taken Premature Plan Distributions, Poll Finds
Excerpt: "According to the survey, the most common reasons for premature withdrawals include a family member losing a job and the cost of a down payment on a home." (Wolters Kluwer)

PBGC's Pension Benefits Take-Back 'Nightmare' for Steel Plant Retirees
Excerpt: "[More than 1,000 steel plant retirees] have learned that their pension benefits were overpaid for years by the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp. The overpayment will be collected by a 10 percent reduction in their benefit rate, further decreasing their monthly check." (The Morning Journal)

Your 401(k) Could Put You on Track to Millions
Excerpt: "Becoming a millionaire may sound impossible. Millionaire may strike you as a term that's meant for other people, not you. But that's just not true." (Success Magazine)

Sponsored by: ASPPA

(Click on company name or banner to learn more.)
Banner ad for ASPPA

ASPPA Spring Exam Window - Registration ends May 14, 2008

Looking for a way to enhance your professional image and gain the knowledge you need to succeed in the retirement industry? ASPPA credentials provide that and more for the retirement professionals who have obtained the most sought after credentials in our industry. Comprehensive and practical, the ASPPA credentialing program has a path for you. The deadline for the spring exam window, May 14, is rapidly approaching. Don't wait another day to start your journey towards a professional ASPPA credential. Register Now.

(Please visit our sponsors. We try to make sure their products and services will be of interest to you. Thanks! --Editor)

Links to Items on Executive Comp, Benefits in General

[Guidance Overview] DOL's Proposed Form T–1 Would Require Detailed Financial Reporting for Most Union-Negotiated Benefit Plans (PDF)
Pages 3-7 of 10 pages. Excerpt: "The Form T-1 annual report would be in addition to, not in lieu of, a Form 5500. However, unlike the Form 5500, which must be prepared and filed by the employee benefit plan itself, Form T–1 must be prepared and filed by each labor union whose members are plan participants provided that union has annual revenues of $250,000 or more." (Trucker Huss)

[Guidance Overview] Benefits Quiz from the April 2008 Trucker Huss Benefits Report (PDF)
Pages 1-2 of 10 pages. Excerpt: "The . . . questions are designed to refresh, and to fine tune, your benefits expertise. Some of the answers (which are found on page 8 of this Newsletter) may surprise you." (Trucker Huss)

Communicating the Value of Benefits Helps Offset Anxiety of Tough Economic Times
Excerpt: "Though the investment in benefits that each organization makes is obvious to executives, studies show that employees generally don't recognize how much their benefits are actually worth. . . . [S]howing employees that their compensation is as much as 25% more than what they thought it was can help . . . ." (Employee Benefit News; free registration required)

Milliman's Monthly Benefit News and Developments, May 2008 (PDF)
2 pages. The newsletter provides a summary of the previous month's legislative, regulatory, and judicial information on employee benefits. (Milliman)

DOL Web Site Helps Employers Navigate Federal Law Dictates
Excerpt: "A new Web site from the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) contains an elaws advisor designed to help employers figure out which of the agency's record keeping, reporting, and notice requirements apply to them." (; free registration required)

Newly Posted Events
(Post Yours!)

Employee Benefits Conference: Strategic Directions
in Minnesota on June 26, 2008
presented by Employers Association, Inc.

The Deloitte Tax LLP Inaugural Compensation & Benefits Symposium - Compensation and Benefits Strategies
in Illinois on October 21, 2008
presented by Deloitte

Newly Posted Press Releases
(Post Yours!)

Employees Without Access to Health Coverage Outside Work Are Far Less Likely to Retire
Watson Wyatt

ExpertPlan Partners with MPAY, Inc. to Provide Bundled Payroll/401(k) Product

Report Finds Women Can Anticipate Nearly Half the Retirement Income of Men
Americans for Secure Retirement (ASR)

MBGH Annual Employer Benefit Survey Reveals Growing Shift to Value-Based Benefit Design
Midwest Business Group on Health

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina Achieves Bridges to Excellence Certification
Bridges to Excellence (BTE)

The SPARK Institute Releases Final 403(b) Plans Best Practices Documents
The SPARK Institute

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Account Manager
for National Retirement Services, Inc.
in CA

Sr. Counsel, Benefits & Compensation
for Wyeth
in NJ

Defined Contribution Administrator
for Merit Benefits Group, Inc.
in IL

Defined Benefit Client Consultant
for Prudential Financial
in CT

Actuarial Consultant / Senior DB Plan Administrator
for Tegra Financial Partners
in GA

for Pension Benefits Unlimited, Inc.
in CA

Actuarial Consultant-US Insurance Group
for MassMutual Financial Group
in CT

Defined Contribution Plan Consultant
for Long Island, New York
in NY

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