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Requirements for Tax Return Preparers Using the PTIN System: Frequently Asked Questions
Excerpt: "'How are enrolled retirement plan agents and enrolled actuaries affected by the recommendations? (posted 7/22/10) Enrolled retirement plan agents and enrolled actuaries must obtain a PTIN if they are compensated for preparing, or assisting in the preparation of, all or substantially all of a federal tax return or claim for refund. But they will be exempt from the competency test requirement if they only prepare returns within the limited practice areas of these groups."
(U.S. Internal Revenue Service)
In-Plan Conversions to Designated Roth Accounts (PDF)
2 pages. Excerpt: "[The Small Business Jobs and Credit Act of 2010] permits non-Roth amounts in 401(k), 403(b) and governmental 457(b) plans to be converted to Roth amounts within the same plan effective September 27, 2010 for 401(k) and 403(b) plans, and for tax years beginning after December 31, 2010, for governmental 457(b) plans."
(Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies)
Despite Questioning Fairness, 1st Circuit Rules Against Retiree Who Lost Benefits
Excerpt: "In his conclusion, [the senior judge] wrote that the case was a hard one to decide because 'it requires us to deny relief to a plaintiff for whom we have considerable sympathy.' Selya noted that Tasker worked for many years, planned for his retirement and discovered that his monthly annuity would be half what he expected. 'On general notions of fairness, the plaintiff deserves better.'"
(The National Law Journal)
Avoiding Five Common 401(k) Mistakes
Excerpt: "Here are five common 401(k) mistakes and [the] adjustments you can make to keep your retirement plans on track . . . ."
(The Wall Street Journal)
DOL Reviews Reports of Advisers Exploiting Retirees
Excerpt: "The questions mostly focus on potential conflicts of interest when exiting workers seek advice on whether to transfer their 401(k) money into an IRA . . . ."
(Investment News; free registration required)
Raising the Bar: Pumping Up Retirement Savings (PDF)
12 pages. Excerpt: "A key finding in [the report] finds that DC plans with automatic enrollment and automatic contribution escalation can significantly boost participants' chances of meeting retirement income goals-but their success depends upon how these features are implemented and communicated by plan sponsors."
(Defined Contribution Institutional Investment Association)
Report Warns of Coming Wave of Municipal Pension Shortfalls
Excerpt: "The report calls the unfunded pension obligations 'off-the-balance-sheet debt' that threatens to starve services such as police protection, recreation centers, parks and libraries."
(The Washington Post; free registration required)
Payout Funds Transform Nest-Egg Accumulations Into a Stream of Retirement Income
Excerpt: "Although consumers have been slow to embrace managed-payout funds, the group's rationale, at least, seems solid. The funds are aimed at investors at the stage of life when the top priority is a flow of income available for spending rather than the accumulation of assets."
(The New York Times; free registration required)
Public Pension Funding in Practice
Excerpt: "This paper examines the current funding of state and local pensions using a sample of 126 plans, estimating an aggregate funded ratio in 2009 of 78 percent. Projections for 2010-2013 suggest that some continued deterioration is likely."
(National Bureau of Economic Research: paid subscription or individual purchase required to retrieve fulltext)
Whether you're working towards an ASPPA credential or just looking to expand your knowledge in specific topical areas, ASPPA's exams are great ways to expand your knowledge while earning valuable CPE credits (valid for ASPPA, JBEA and ERPA requirements)! The proctored exam window is open from November 1 to December 16 but it's important to register early and have time to prepare.
Registration ends October 29. For more information, visit ASPPA's exam site
Benefits in General; Executive Compensation
The ERISA Litigation Newsletter, October 2010
This edition focuses on a recent ruling: 'Tenth Circuit Permits Discovery of Dual Role Conflict of Interest Issues in ERISA Benefit Claims, But with Limitations;' it also covers other Rulings, Filings and Settlements of Interest.
(Proskauer Rose LLP)
Webcasts and Conferences
ERISA Litigation Update
in California on October 21, 2010
Western Pension & Benefits Conference - Orange County Chapter
Newly Posted Employee Benefits Jobs
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