Retirement Plans Newsletter

October 23, 2020

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[Official Guidance]

Memorandum from the President on Pensions of Delphi Corporation Retirees and Other Retirees Covered by Vulnerable Pension Plans

"The Secretary of the Treasury, the Secretary of Commerce, and the Secretary of Labor, in consultation with the Assistant to the President for Trade and Manufacturing Policy, shall review the Delphi matter ... and inform the President ... of any appropriate action that may be taken, consistent with applicable law, to [1] address affected Delphi retirees' lost pension benefits, and [2] bring additional transparency to the decision to terminate the plan ... This review shall include an evaluation of the feasibility of enacting legislation and whether the plan may be restored to its pretermination status under section 1347 of title 29, United States Code....

"The Secretary of the Treasury, the Secretary of Commerce, and the Secretary of Labor, in consultation with the Assistant to the President for Economic Policy, shall review the pension plans presently held in trusteeship by the PBGC and inform the President ... of any appropriate action that may be taken consistent with applicable law. Actions may include proposing legislation that appropriately balances the interests of all those covered by the pension system -- from retirees, workers, employers, and unions, to plans and taxpayers -- to address the insolvency of such plans and to maintain the future solvency of the PBGC's Single-Employer and Multi-Employer Programs." [Also see: Fact SheetIcon to read more

The White House

[Official Guidance]

Draft of Instructions for IRS Form 5310-A: Notice of Plan Merger or Consolidation, Spinoff, or Transfer of Plan Assets or Liabilities; Notice of Qualified Separate Lines of Business (PDF)

Rev. Dec. 2020; draft as of Oct. 22, 2020. "Form 5310-A is used by employers to give notice of: [1] A plan merger or consolidation that is the combining of two or more plans into a single plan. [2] A plan spinoff that is the splitting of a single plan into two or more spinoff plans. [3] A plan transfer of plan assets or liabilities to another plan that is the splitting off of a portion of the assets or liabilities of the transferor plan and the concurrent acquisition or assumption of these split-off assets or liabilities by the transferee plan. [4] Qualified separate lines of business (QSLOBs).... An IRS determination letter will not be issued when a Form 5310-A is filed." Icon to read more

Internal Revenue Service [IRS]

[Guidance Overview]

IRS Guidance Clarifies Birth and Adoption Distribution Rules Under the SECURE Act

"An 'eligible adoptee' must be under the age of 18 or physically or mentally incapable of self-support and does not include the child of the taxpayer's spouse, even if adopted by the participant.... A plan is permitted, but is not required, to offer QBADs.... Each participant parent may separately receive a QBAD of up to $5,000 for the same child or eligible adoptee, including from the same plan." Icon to read more

Slevin & Hart, P.C.

White House Orders Review of Delphi Pension Fund Termination

"One group of salaried plan participants sued unsuccessfully to challenge the PBGC's takeover of the plan, which at the time of termination in 2009 had $2.5 billion in assets and $4.5 billion in liabilities, for a funding ratio of 56% ... President Donald Trump directed the secretaries of Labor, Commerce and Treasury to review whether the PBGC can restore the full pension benefits of 20,000 Delphi participants and review the decision to terminate the pension plan. The order gives 90 days for the review to see what actions can be taken to restore the full pension benefits." Icon to read more

Pensions & Investments

Plan Participant Cost Allocation Strategies

"As you consider your fee allocation methodology, prompt your plan oversight group with the following questions: [1] When was the last time we discussed how our retirement plan costs are allocated to plan participants? [2] Can we demonstrate the existing allocation methodology follows a diligent and documented process? [3] If a plan participant questions the fees paid, are we prepared to clearly outline the process we have in place to monitor and benchmark our plan's fees? [4] Are we effectively communicating this information to our participants?" Icon to read more

Francis Investment Counsel LLC

The Duties and Responsibilities of a 457(b) or 401(a) Plan Administrator

"[If] the provider is acting only in a 'ministerial' capacity, or is merely making recommendations (perhaps as a co-fiduciary) for the plan administrator's consideration, the ultimate responsibility and liability stays with the plan administrator. If you think your providers are taking responsibility for certain aspects of plan administration, it is critical to review your service agreements to confirm this." Icon to read more

Best Best & Krieger LLP

401(k)s Could Become Even Less Welcoming to ESG Funds

"In 2018, only 2.8% of 401(k)s offered an ESG fund in their lineups ... Considering many Americans do most of their investing through their 401(k)s, that could help explain why sustainable investing still accounts for just a fraction of overall U.S. fund assets despite dozens of surveys that suggest investors want such options.... [S]ome investment pros say ESG investing has subtly gained ground in retirement plans as more workers look to ESG data to inform their investment choices." Icon to read more

The Wall Street Journal; subscription may be required

Benefits in General

COVID-19 Driving Benefit Offerings and Potentially Forcing Tough Budget Decisions

"The top issues addressed through financial wellness initiatives were health care costs and retirement preparedness ... Personalized credit/debt counseling, coaching, or planning is one financial wellbeing benefit that saw an increase in prevalence in 2020. The benefits that declined in prevalence were employee discount programs/partnerships, tuition reimbursement, and bank-at-work partnerships." Icon to read more

Employee Benefit Research Institute [EBRI]

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BenefitsLink Retirement Plans Newsletter, ISSN no. 1536-9587. Copyright 2020 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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