Retirement Plans Newsletter

July 7, 2016

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Retirement Plan Administrator
Third Party Administration Firm
in NJ

Defined Contribution Consultant
The Benefit Practice
in CA, CT, FL, Telecommute

Pension Administrator
Actuaries Unlimited, Inc.
in CA

RAS Testing & Reporting Consultant
MassMutual
in CT, MA

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Webcasts and Conferences

You Have a Business, But Do You Have a Brand?
July 13, 2016 WEBCAST
(TPA Resources, LLC)

Trends in Coverage and Affordability on the ACA Marketplaces
July 15, 2016 in DC
(Alliance for Health Reform)

Useful Innovations in Healthcare Technology
August 18, 2016 in GA
(Worldwide Employee Benefits Network [WEB] - Atlanta Chapter)

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[Guidance Overview]

Reminder: Answers Not Required for Certain Questions on IRS Form 5500
"The instructions for Forms 5500 and 5500-SF, and for Schedules H, I and R were revised to provided that these questions should be skipped when completing the form. These questions are lines 4o, 4p, 6c and 6d of Schedules H and I respectively, Part VII (IRS Compliance Questions) of Schedule R and Part IX (IRS Compliance Questions) of Form 5500-SF." (Seyfarth Shaw LLP)  


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The Disappearing Determination Letter: How Plan Sponsors Can Cope
"Plan sponsors who still have an opportunity to file for a current letter (only Cycle A filers through January 31, 2017) should take advantage of that opportunity to get an updated letter. However, this will be a minority of plans. Others should be preparing to do more self-audits to identify qualification problems before a real audit occurs, and to request periodic qualification opinions from their legal advisers." (Cohen & Buckmann pc)  

Delta Employees Sue Fidelity for 'Illegal Kickbacks' from Financial Engines
"The suit ... implies Fidelity breached its fiduciary duty by accepting part of Financial Engines' advice fee despite Financial Engines providing no advice ... The plaintiffs maintain that if Fidelity was not being paid then the fee that Financial Engines would charge would be substantially less.... The lawsuit employs similar logic in alleging that Fidelity is acting illegally by offering retail classes of shares to investors when institutional shares exist, alleging that the aggregation of all the retail accounts equals one big institutional account." (RIABiz)  

Three Things DC Plan Sponsors Need to Focus On
"Design a plan with the right objectives.... Get the default options right.... Consider hiring [an outsourcing] partner." (Russell Investments)  

Collective Investment Trusts Rise in Popularity as Alternative to Mutual Funds
"Assets invested in these vehicles have grown from about $900 billion in 2008 to over $1.5 trillion at the end of 2014 ... The low-cost dimension of CITs has also caught the attention of famed litigator Jerry Schlichter, of Schlichter Bogard & Denton.... Plan fiduciaries and investment fiduciary advisers need to be well versed in CITs and how to evaluate them." (fi360)  

ESOPs Have Risks: What Participants Can Do
"This fact sheet describes the types of ESOPs, outlines risks associated with them, and suggests steps that people with ESOPs can take to reduce those risks." (Pension Rights Center)  

Household Economic Shocks Increase Retirement Wealth Inequality (PDF)
10 pages. "Economic shocks explain at least 32 percent of withdrawals by workers in low-income households, and possibly more. The use of the retirement savings system as insurance against economic shocks fails to preserve retirement savings for their intended purpose and increases retirement income inequality." (Schwartz Center for Economic Policy Analysis, The New School)  

Benefits in General

[Official Guidance]

Text of EBSA Request for Nominations: Advisory Council on Employee Welfare and Pension Benefit Plans (PDF)
"The terms of five members of the Council expire at the end of this year. The groups or fields they represent are as follows: [1] employee organizations; [2] employers; [3] insurance; [4] accounting; and [5] the general public.... [N]ominations [may be submitted] to Larry Good, Council Executive Secretary, Frances Perkins Building, U.S. [DOL], 200 Constitution Avenue, NW., Suite N-5623, Washington, DC 20210, or as e-mail attachments to good.larry@dol.gov. Nominations (including supporting nominations) must be received on or before August 1, 2016." (Employee Benefits Security Administration [EBSA], U.S. Department of Labor [DOL])  

[Guidance Overview]

Federal Agencies Ratchet Up Employer Penalties, Effective Later This Summer
"A number of the penalty increases for ERISA violations are for failures to provide information to participants and beneficiaries. While some of these increases do not appear significant, they can compound rapidly because each day that this information is late to each participant can result in an additional penalty." (Fisher Phillips)  

Executive Compensation and Nonqualified Plans

[Guidance Overview]

Good News! New 409A Regulations, Part 1
"Severance Safe Harbor Available for Bad Hires.... Reimbursement of Legal Fees for Bona Fide Employment Claims is Exempt.... Employees Becoming Contractors Can Have a Separation from Service." (Benefits Bryan Cave)  

Press Releases

President Obama Names Joyce M. St. Clair to PBGC Advisory Committee
PBGC [Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation]

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BenefitsLink Retirement Plans Newsletter, ISSN no. 1536-9587. Copyright 2016 BenefitsLink.com, Inc. All materials contained in this newsletter are protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, displayed, published or broadcast without the prior written permission of BenefitsLink.com, Inc., or in the case of third party materials, the owner of that content. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notice from copies of the content.

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