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Retirement Plans Newsletter

September 12, 2019

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[Official Guidance]

Text of PBGC Interest Rate Update for Benefits Payable in Terminated Single-Employer Plans, October and Fourth Quarter 2019

"The October 2019 lump sum interest assumptions will be 0.00 percent for the period during which a benefit is (or is assumed to be) in pay status and 4.00 percent during any years preceding the benefit's placement in pay status.... The fourth quarter 2019 interest assumptions will be 2.53 percent for the first 25 years following the valuation date and 2.53 percent thereafter."

Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation [PBGC]

[Guidance Overview]

Last Call for 'Multiple Employer Plans' to File a Correct Form 5500 or 5500-SF

"[I]f you have (or have had since 2014) a plan with more than one contributing employer, and you are unsure that all of the contributing employers are (and have been since 2014) members of a controlled group or affiliated service group, then your Form 5500 or 5500-SF reporting may need to identify all contributing employers.... [Y]ou must take steps no later than October 15, 2019, to complete your 2018 Form 5500 or 5500-SF for the affected plan or plans in a manner that reflects the plan's status as an MEP or MEWA."

Warner Norcross & Judd LLP

Supreme Court Amicus Brief Shows How High the Stakes Really Are for the Future of ERISA's 'Actual Knowledge' Requirement

"If, on the one hand, the Court were to adopt the Ninth Circuit's Intel approach, it might encourage a groundswell of litigation relating to excessive fee and investment performance relayed in plan disclosures -- if on the other hand, the Court adopts the Brown holding, however, it would foreclose many of those claims as untimely. These are the stakes for ERISA litigants." [Sulyma v. Intel Corp. Investment Policy Comm., No. 17-15864 (9th Cir. Nov. 28, 2018; cert. pet. granted June 10, 2019; amicus brief of employer organizations filed Aug. 29, 2019)]

The Wagner Law Group

Potential Unknown Risks for Plan Sponsors

"[1] Participating in an Open MEP ... [2] Paying for fiduciary services with limited or no added protection ... [3] Ignoring controlled group requirements ... [4] Terminating a plan or changing providers when you don't want to correct a compliance issue ... [5] Backdating a plan document or amendment ... [6] Taking data security lightly."

DWC

Editor's Pick How Savings and Retirement Benefit Distributions May Prudently Be Used to Make Charitable Gifts

"[D]istributions from individual retirement accounts or annuities may be eligible for the favorable tax treatment applicable to qualified charitable distributions (QCDs). This article explains the QCD requirements. The article also discusses when it is prudent to use those provisions ... when it is prudent to do otherwise if savings or retirement benefits fund charitable contributions, and when it is prudent to use other funding sources ... for charitable contributions."

Law Offices of Albert Feuer, via SSRN

[Advert.]

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.


He Spent Decades Teaching Retirement Planning; Here's What He Learned from Planning His Own

" 'In financial planning, we tend to think it's all about the numbers,' says [David Littell, Professor Emeritus at the American College of Financial Services] 'But ... [the] idea that you don't have a paycheck anymore is rather terrifying.' ... [U]nderstand that estimates are just that, and are subject to change. Revisit your plan regularly, and make sure the numbers are going to work before you give up your full-time gig.... Littell was willing to give up control over a quarter of his portfolio in return for guaranteed income[.]"

Motley Fool

States Sue to Stop Regulation Best Interest

"Much like litigation surrounding DOL’s Fiduciary Rule, litigation surrounding Regulation Best Interest could take years to play out.... [It] is likely that this case merely represents the next step in the standard of care saga where DOL, the SEC, and the states have all been and are likely to continue to be major actors."

Groom Law Group

SEC Faces Second Lawsuit Over Reg BI, This Time from Fee-Only Financial Planners

"[T]he claims are similar enough as those brought by the states and it is likely the cases will be consolidated.... [We] can expect to see additional lawsuits brought (and maybe/probably in different court(s)). Missing from the mix thus far are consumer protection groups who will seek to represent the views of the customers who purchase advisory services."

AskTomClark.com

[Opinion]

Attorneys General Wrong About SEC Regulation Best Interest

"Reg BI is consistent with the Dodd-Frank Act’s mandate requiring the SEC to review investment advice standards and develop better rules, if necessary, to protect consumers.... The SEC went beyond official rulemaking requirements to analyze and elicit costs and benefits from all stakeholders as it crafted Reg BI."

American Council of Life Insurers [ACLI]

Benefits in General

[Opinion]

Retirement, Financial Wellness, and the Power of Simplicity

"Some plan sponsors are trying to assist employees with almost everything financial ... and are even attempting the daunting task of integrating financial wellness into their medical wellness programs.... [M]any employees are simply looking for their needs to be met, rather than complicated holistic programs.... [M]any individuals already lead financially complex lives that can greatly benefit from simplification."

Cammack Retirement Group

Executive Compensation
and Nonqualified Plans

Capital Gains Tax: What Democratic Presidential Candidates Are Saying and What Tax Changes Might Look Like

"While most of the Democratic candidates appear to support eliminating the different tax rates that apply to long-term capital gains compared to compensation income, those policies might not mean all the gain would be taxable.... [T]ax policies in countries around the world embrace the rationale that capital gains should be taxed differently than employment income."

myStockOptions.com

Selected Discussions
on the BenefitsLink Message Boards

Short Plan Year for Safe Harbor Plan; Business Began on July 1

Two employees previously working for a law firm started their own practice 7/1/2019 and want to set up a safe harbor 401(k) by 9/30/2019. I believe the plan would need to start as of the date the practice started, and have a short plan year, because they were employees of another firm prior to that date. No eligibility requirements would be applied, such that all employees that started with the firm, whether part time or full time, would  be included. I also believe the only safe harbor available at this point, judging from the client's goal, would be a safe harbor match, with the hopes that the employees not defer. Am I off track here?

BenefitsLink Message Boards

Mediation with IRS Following an Appeal?

Does anyone have experience with 'post-Appeals mediation' with the IRS? Could the mediation result in overturning the Appeals Office decision altogether or would it only be likely to reduce the liability assessed by Appeals (or affirm the Appeals position)?

BenefitsLink Message Boards

$250,000 Asset Threshhold for an Owner-Only Plan: Do Receivables Count?

In calculating whether the plan has $250K, does one count receivables?

BenefitsLink Message Boards

Safe Harbor Added Mid-Year to Profit Sharing Plan; What Comp to Use for SH?

PS plan effective 1/1/2017 added 401(k) and QACA SH on 3/1/18. What compensation am I using for the SH? Plan compensation definition says full year and not participation compensation.

BenefitsLink Message Boards

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Press Releases

Announcing the 2019 Top 10 DC Wholesalers - DCIO and RK
National Association of Plan Advisors [NAPA]

Most Popular Items in the Previous Issue

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Lois Baker, J.D., President  loisbaker@benefitslink.com
David Rhett Baker, J.D., Editor and Publisher  davebaker@benefitslink.com
Holly Horton, Business Manager  hollyhorton@benefitslink.com

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

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