Retirement Plans Newsletter

August 13, 2019 logo logo
Search   ·   Past Issues   ·   Get Message Boards Digest   ·   Get Health & Welfare News


Assistant Team Leader
Nova 401(k) Associates
in Houston TX / Dallas TX / Austin TX / Scottsdale AZ / Telecommute

Quality Assurance Manager
Nova 401(k) Associates
in Houston TX / Dallas TX / Austin TX / Scottsdale AZ / Telecommute

Staff Attorney
Pension Rights Center
in Washington DC

►See All Jobs

►Post a Job

Webcasts, Conferences

Benefits Certificate Program
September 16, 2019 in WI
International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans [IFEBP]

The End is Near! Getting Plan Termination Right
September 24, 2019 in FL
ASPPA Benefits Council [ABC] of North Florida

Weighty Aspects of Top-Heavy
November 6, 2019 WEBCAST
ASPPA College of Pension Actuaries [ACOPA]

MEPS and PEPS - Legal and Regulatory Developments
November 13, 2019 WEBCAST
ASPPA [American Society of Pension Professionals & Actuaries]

Fourth Quarter Washington Update
December 4, 2019 WEBCAST
ASPPA [American Society of Pension Professionals & Actuaries]

►See 155 Upcoming Webcasts and Conferences

►See 1544 Recorded Webcasts


New Topics on the BenefitsLink Message Boards

New Comments and Topics

All Topics, Grouped by Forum

This Newsletter:
Subscribe Now

BenefitsLink Health & Welfare Plans Newsletter:
Subscribe Now

Message Boards Digest:
Subscribe Now

[Guidance Overview]

DOL's Final Rule on Association Retirement Plans: What It Means for the Retirement Industry

"[T]rade associations and other employer groups where the more liberal commonality threshold can be comfortably satisfied ... may choose to create a MEP under the regulation in order to obtain savings through economies of scale. But a greater expansion of the MEP market -- specifically the Open MEP market -- will need to wait for the passage of additional laws or regulations."

Drinker Biddle


DATAIR's Ultimate Cash Balance Plan Seminar November 4-5, 2019

Sponsored by DATAIR Employee Benefit Systems, Inc.

Join DATAIR and Cash Balance experts Norman Levinrad and Kevin Donovan who will cover everything you need to know about Cash Balance Plans from theory to practice in this one seminar. CE approved for JBEA, ERPA and ASPPA. Register now.

IRS Updates VCP Electronic Submission Procedures, Revises Form

"Sponsoring employers and their authorized plan representatives are now permitted to use the same '' username to submit multiple Forms 8950 -- including forms submitted on behalf of different employers or plans. Similarly, the same '' username may be used to submit additional user fees for multiple open VCP submissions ... with respect to different plans or clients of an authorized plan representative."

Compliance Dashboard

Plaintiffs Increasingly Push for Non-Monetary Concessions from Plan Fiduciaries in ERISA Fee Settlements

"Some defendants see non-monetary concessions as a 'cost-free' way to settle a case for a smaller cash payment. But they don’t always account for the soft costs (inconvenience, compliance costs, and the burden of having an adversary looking over your shoulder from inside the tent) when they agree to ongoing non-monetary obligations."

Thompson Hine LLP via Lexology; free registration required

Are Your Target Date Funds a Lawsuit Waiting to Happen?

"Although target date funds are very complicated, and have different risks, structures and fees, they have become the [QDIA] of choice for most 401(k) plans. Despite the major differences among target date funds, far too few fiduciaries really understand how they work or evaluate their vendor’s target date funds against the available alternatives."

Cohen & Buckmann, P.C.

How Many Small Business Owners Accidentally Trap Themselves with This Treacherous 401(k) Fiduciary Conflict?

"Suppose ... the owner’s personal adviser, one not affiliated with the retirement plan’s adviser, offers a significant fee break to the owner if the owner transferred the retirement account to this adviser.... The math says it’s in the owner’s best interest to take the funds out of the retirement plan and consolidate with the personal adviser. But is that transaction in the best interests of the remaining plan participants? All the fixed fees associated with the plan must now be absorbed by them, potentially raising their fees quite dramatically."

Fiduciary News


SPARK Forum - November 3-5, 2019 -- The Breakers, Palm Beach, FL

Sponsored by SPARK

Join us at the retirement services industry's leading event for top marketing, sales, administration and record keeping professionals. Comprehensive agenda includes topics for Record Keepers, 401(k) Plan Providers, Financial Advisors and Cyber Security Professionals.

Casino Group's Gamble on Partial Withdrawal Liability Hits Jackpot

"The Third Circuit ... held that for the bargaining-out provision to apply, the work that continues to be performed must not be work that results in contributions to the Fund. The Third Circuit thus joined all other circuits that have examined the issue in holding that no partial withdrawal liability is imposed when an employer closes an operation and shifts work to other operations that are covered by other CBAs under which contributions are required to be made to the multiemployer plan." [Caesars Entertainment Corp. v. Int'l Union of Op. Eng. Local 68 Pension Fund, No. 18-2465 (3d Cir. Aug. 1, 2019)]

Stinson Leonard Street

Avoiding Employee Benefits-Related Representations & Warranties Policy Exclusions

"The standard employee benefits-related policy exclusions typically include an exclusion for any losses related to the underfunding of a defined benefit plan and any losses relating to potential withdrawal liability associated with a multiemployer pension plan. These standard policy exclusions will be included in the R&W Insurance policy regardless of the diligence process.... To limit the number of transaction-specific policy exclusions, buyers and their counsel should ensure that they conduct a thorough due diligence process."

Morgan Lewis

Protecting Retirement Assets from Creditors (PDF)

"[T]he Supreme Court decided in 2014 that inherited IRAs are not 'retirement funds' protected by the federal Bankruptcy Code, and the repercussions are still being felt.  Bankruptcy courts have now extended the Supreme Court’s reasoning to find that retirement accounts received through divorce proceedings are not 'retirement funds,' and state courts are wrestling with whether their exemption statutes similarly expose inherited IRAs to creditors."


Creating a National Retirement Policy (PDF)

"A comprehensive national retirement policy that articulates guiding principles for the U.S. retirement system could help policymakers craft legislation and regulations that more effectively address Americans’ retirement security needs including securing adequate lifetime income."

American Academy of Actuaries

Windfall Elimination Provision Exemptions (PDF)

"Of 150 sampled beneficiaries, SSA improperly exempted 26 from WEP.... Although the Agency was aware these 26 beneficiaries had received pensions, it did not reduce their benefits for WEP.... Based on our sample results, we estimate SSA improperly paid approximately 3,600 beneficiaries $118 million. Additionally, SSA exempted 28 beneficiaries from WEP where we found the exemptions questionable."

Office of the Inspector General, Social Security Administration


Editor's Pick The SECURE Act and Guaranteed Retirement Income in Plans

"By now you have probably seen a number of articles about the SECURE Act and its safe harbor for guaranteed retirement income in 401(k) plans.  Some have favored the safe harbor, while others have criticized it. In either case, the authors appear to contemplate that participants will be buying individual annuities at retail prices. ... [T]hose articles -- on both sides of the fight -- are at best misleading and in some cases just plain wrong."

Executive Compensation
and Nonqualified Plans

Capital Gains Tax Tug-of-War: Democratic Presidential Candidates, Trump's Indexing, and IRS Forms

"Democratic presidential candidates are proposing changes in capital gains tax to boost federal revenue. At the same time, pulling in the opposite direction, the Trump White House is considering an executive order to require the US Treasury to index capital gains for inflation, effectively resulting in a tax cut for investors ... [An] employee incurs a capital gain or loss when selling company shares acquired from stock option exercises, restricted stock/RSU vesting, or ESPP purchases, even if the number of shares is small."

Bruce Brumberg via Forbes

Selected Discussions
on the BenefitsLink Message Boards

Can Adoption Agreement Reference the CBA for Eligibility Criteria?

Potential client employs people in several different unions. Wants to start a plan for those union employees only. But there are different requirements for eligibility for each union. The employer wants to put in "as specified in applicable CBA." Is that kosher?

BenefitsLink Message Boards

Projected 2020 Retirement Plan Limitation Amounts, Based on New CPI Release

The latest and greatest figures based on today's CPI release -- this is a spreadsheet that's a revision of the last spreadsheet I created. Note: it adds 2 new columns which might never be used: [1] indexed limit for minimum distribution which was planned last year but never passed; and [2] indexed limit for catch up at age 60, which was part of the secure act if that ever gets passed. Of course, the year I to which I have it indexed might need to be adjusted someday.

Tom Poje via BenefitsLink Message Boards

► Subscribe to the BenefitsLink Message Boards Digest— a free daily email of all new discussions (not just the selected few shown above). View a sample issue.

Press Releases

Nominations Now Open for NTSA 2020 Elite Advisor Award
National Tax-Deferred Savings Association [NTSA]

Most Popular Items in the Previous Issue

TDF Choice Draws Fiduciary Breach Suit
National Association of Plan Advisors [NAPA], Inc.
1298 Minnesota Avenue, Suite H
Winter Park, Florida 32789
(407) 644-4146

Lois Baker, J.D., President
David Rhett Baker, J.D., Editor and Publisher
Holly Horton, Business Manager

BenefitsLink Retirement Plans Newsletter, ISSN no. 1536-9587. Copyright 2019, 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, Inc., or in the case of third party materials, the owner of those materials. You may not alter or remove any trademark, copyright or other notices from copies of the content.

Links to web sites other than and are offered as a service to our readers; we were not involved in their production and are not responsible for their content.

Unsubscribe  |   Change Email Address  |   Privacy Policy