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Retirement Plans Newsletter

July 8, 2021

3 New Job Opportunities


Exceptional Usefulness and Quality icon To Arbitrate or to Litigate Under ERISA, That Is the Question (PDF)

"Aside from engaging in good fiduciary practice, plan fiduciaries should consider adopting an amendment to their plan which provides for mandatory arbitration and a class action waiver. This column explores the relevant issues and offers advice for plan fiduciaries who wish to consider such an amendment."  MORE >>

Davis & Gilbert LLP, via Employee Relations Law Journal


ASC CE Webcast: 403(b) Update

Stay up to date on the special rules and new developments regarding 403(b) plans. Topics include how 403(b) plans differ from 401(k) and 457(b) plans, working with pre-approved 403(b) plans, common IRS and DOL errors and more. Register Now!

Sponsored by ASC

Plan Checkup: Minimizing Fiduciary Risks

"Plan committees must work efficiently and effectively to fulfill all of their plan responsibilities. [This article provides] 12 suggested committee agenda items, which when carried out, can help mitigate fiduciary risks."  MORE >>

Portfolio Evaluations, Inc.

Voluntary Fiduciary Correction Program and PTE 2002-51

"The DOL's VFC Program allows plan officials to voluntarily correct 19 specific prohibited transactions. PTE 2002-51 provides relief from the IRS excise tax for six of the 19 transactions. A business can only take advantage of the IRS excise tax relief for a transaction once every three years."  MORE >>

Retirement Learning Center, LLC

Is Your 457(b) or 401(a) Plan Fee Allocation Fair and Reasonable?

"If one accepts the characterization of day-to-day recordkeeping ... as primarily an accounting function ... why shouldn't these services be paid for on a per account (or per capita) basis? ... If your plan, like most plans, uses its independent investment advisor to choose, or help you choose, your investment line-up, don't these services benefit all participants equally? ... [If] your plan has 20% to 40% of the plan assets invested in the stable fund option, are the participants invested in this option paying a disproportionate share of the overall recordkeeping fees?"  MORE >>

Best Best & Krieger LLP

U.S. Pension Briefing, June 2021

"Pension discount rates declined 0.20%-0.25% in June which will translate to pension liability increases of 2-3% for a typical pension plan. Asset performance was also generally positive for June, with both US fixed income and equities up slightly for the month. Most pension plans will have seen little change in their funded status during the month of June[.]"  MORE >>

River and Mercantile

The Truth About Paying for Long-Term Care in Retirement

"Despite report after report telling today's seniors that whatever savings they have will be consumed by exorbitant long-term care costs in the decades to come, these concerns may be overblown. A recent study ... sifted through a trove of real-life data and found that less than a quarter of 65-year-olds will require the type of intensive care -- both in terms of severity of the illness and length of recovery -- that causes so much financial drain."  MORE >>

Forbes; subscription may be required

Connecticut Public Sector Pensions Are Prime Beneficiary of Federal COVID Relief Grants

"Analysts project the newly adopted $46.4 billion, two-year state budget will close in July 2023 with $2.3 billion left over -- an amount that exceeds the $1.8 billion in federal coronavirus relief built into the budget. Because the state's rainy day fund already is filled to the legal maximum, those dollars must go into either the pension fund for state employees or the retirement system for teachers."  MORE >>

Stamford Advocate

Don't Be Dogmatic About Retirement-Portfolio Withdrawals

"[It] goes without saying that you should always take your RMDs on time. That said, it's a mistake to be dogmatic about withdrawal sequencing -- burning through taxable accounts first, then depleting traditional IRA/401(k) assets before finally moving on to your Roth accounts.... [Y]our tax picture will change from year to year based on your expenses, your available deductions, your investments' performance, and your RMDs, among other factors."  MORE >>

Christine Benz, in Morningstar


Testimony to the ERISA Advisory Council: Gaps in Retirement Savings Based on Race, Ethnicity and Gender (PDF)

14 pages. "The first topic is retirement issues faced disproportionately by women ... The second topic is incremental reforms that might close some of the system's gaps in coverage and adequacy.... [T]he third topic is an argument for a different national retirement policy to replace the Rube Goldberg system we are now saddled with, in which enormous tax expenditures are used to reward the savings of the people least likely to need government largesse to incentivize them to save for retirement while preparedness problems of lower and moderate individuals are studied over and over again rather than meaningfully addressed."  MORE >>

Prof. Norman Stein


Testimony to the ERISA Advisory Council: Understanding Brokerage Windows in Self-Directed Retirement Plans (PDF)

13 pages. "[B]rokerage windows, while not appropriate for all investors, do provide a beneficial investment option for certain plan participants who are interested and willing to take a very hands-on approach to managing their investments. It is [Alight's] view that participants with access to brokerage windows are adequately protected under ERISA."  MORE >>

Alison Borland, Alight

Benefits in General

Harmonizing 'Tax Home' Concepts with Evolving Remote Work Arrangements (PDF)

"An important issue that arises is whether an employer should reimburse employees for the associated travel costs to the [employer's physical location] to ease the transition -- or provide incentives for returning to traditional work locations. [The authors] highlight the historic federal tax rules regarding commuting and travel expenses; identify issues raised as more employers and employees transition to modified work arrangements; and offer recommendations for sensible interim policies in this area."  MORE >>

Groom Law Group, via Tax Notes State

Employee Benefits Jobs

View job as Legal Counsel - RPS Operations Oversight
for T.Rowe Price Legal Counsel - RPS Operations Oversight

T.Rowe Price

Owings Mills MD

View job as 5500 & Trust Specialist I
for Ascensus 5500 & Trust Specialist I



View job as Enrolled Actuary
for Ascensus Enrolled Actuary



Press Releases

Groom Expands Its Deep Team with Addition of Principal Elizabeth Drake

Groom Law Group

TIAA Named One of '70 Innovative Companies Leading on Leave in 2021'


Webcasts and Conferences
(Retirement Plans or Exec Comp)

The Who, What, When, Where, Why (And, Most Importantly, How) ERISA Plan Fiduciaries Prudently Consider ESG-Related Investments

July 15, 2021 WEBCAST


Last Issue's Most Popular Items

Tenth Circuit Affirms Revenue Sharing Arrangement Is Not Prohibited Transaction


How to (Legally) Buy Early Growth Shares in Your Roth IRA

Nerd's Eye View

2021 Social Security Survey (PDF)

Nationwide Retirement Institute

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

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