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Retirement Plans Newsletter

November 30, 2021

9 New Job Opportunities 9 New Job Opportunities


[Guidance Overview]

DOL Proposes New ESG and Proxy Voting Rule (PDF)

"The proposal is part of a long continuum of DOL guidance and rulemaking over the years to clarify how the consideration of ESG in investment decisions and proxy voting comports with the fiduciary duties under [ERISA].... [T]his proposed rule ... would both reaffirm the importance of ESG as a consideration by ERISA fiduciaries and strongly encourage the incorporation of ESG in ERISA plans and 'plan asset' funds."  MORE >>

Stradley Ronon, via Bloomberg Law

[Guidance Overview]

New York Joins Growing Number of States Enacting Auto-IRA Laws

"[T]his program seeks to promote greater retirement savings for employees of smaller businesses that may not have access to employer-sponsored retirement plans by requiring employees to opt out of participation. Earlier this year, New York City enacted a similar auto-IRA law applicable to city employers with five or more employees. The city's law, however, may not move forward if the city determines it conflicts with the new state law."  MORE >>

Morgan Lewis

Exceptional Usefulness and Quality icon A Compendium of Findings About the Retirement Outlook of U.S. Workers (PDF)

320 pages. "Demographic influences can profoundly affect a worker's ability to save and prepare for a financially secure retirement. A greater understanding of these influences can help identify opportunities, envision solutions, and inform public policy priorities for strengthening our retirement system.... [This study] explores the health, employment, and finances of workers amid the COVID-19 pandemic. It offers 35 key indicators of retirement readiness by employment status, work arrangements, urbanicity, household income, race/ethnicity, LGBTQ+, and caregiver status."  MORE >>

Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies

Billions of Lost Retirement Dollars Are Getting Harder to Find

"Fraud concerns have prompted [PBGC] to take down a public database that previously helped retirement-plan participants track down their benefits ... Many people ... have also lately had trouble obtaining key information that the Social Security Administration typically provides about private retirement benefits ... The new challenges come at a time when the pandemic is expected to exacerbate the longstanding problem of retirement plan sponsors losing track of their participants."  MORE >>


Third Quarter 2021 U.S. Single-Premium Pension Buy-Out Sales More Than Triple Prior Year Sales

"U.S. single premium buy-out sales totaled $15.8 billion in the third quarter, up 243% from third quarter 2020 sales of $4.6 billion ... In the third quarter, there were two single premium buy-in contracts totaling $700 million.... The overall group annuity risk transfer sales year-to-date were $25.7 billion through the third quarter of 2021, a 116% increase, compared with the first three quarters of 2020."  MORE >>

LIMRA Secure Retirement Institute:

CITs, Retirement Income Products and ESG Investing Poised for Growth

"66% of managers believe aggregators have become a primary influencer in deciding DC plan investments in the $25 million to $250 million segment, and that rises to 68% for the $250 million to $500 million range.... Key DC plan decisionmakers, including advisers and consultants, continue to favor collective investment trusts (CITs) ... Retirement income remains a prime area of focus for asset managers and plan fiduciaries ... A shift in political attitude has placed environmental, social and governance (ESG) investing back in the spotlight[.]"  MORE >>

PLANSPONSOR; free registration may be required

Are You Leaving Business on the Table?

"With plan review season in full swing, now is a great time to sit down with your plan sponsor clients and review their existing menu of plan services and fees. This is an ideal opportunity to check in to make sure you're not leaving untapped business on the table and a prime time to reinforce the value you bring to the relationship. It's also a chance for you to offer new services[.]"  MORE >>

Fiduciary Benchmarks

Don't Let Your Heir's Creditors End Up with Your Retirement Funds

"A general rule is that qualified retirement plans are exempt from bankruptcy claims. But that general rule applies only to the original owner of the account. Beyond that, the situation is murky. The results can depend on whether the account is an IRA or 401(k) and whether federal or state law applies."  MORE >>

Forbes; subscription may be required

Benefits in General

In Remembrance of Theodore R. Groom

"On November 26, 2021, Groom Law Group lost its founder, friend and leader, Theodore R. Groom. In 1975, Ted co-founded Groom and Nordberg, which evolved to become Groom Law Group, Chartered, the nation's foremost benefits, retirement and healthcare law firm.... In the 1970s, Ted was instrumental in the development of [ERISA], particularly its landmark fiduciary responsibility provisions.... We remember Ted as a mentor, teacher, trusted colleague and friend, as a man who loved the law, and, most of all, as a man who loved and supported his family, friends and colleagues."  MORE >>

Groom Law Group

Who Has the Burden of Proof When an ERISA Claim Is Denied?

"In most instances, the claimant has the burden of proof by a preponderance of the evidence that they are entitled to benefits.... What is the definition of a 'Preponderance of the Evidence'? What's different about ERISA cases? When does the burden of proof shift to the insurance company?"  MORE >>

DeBofsky Sherman Casciari Reynolds P.C.

Satisfying Electronic Disclosure Requirements for SPDs to New Hires

"[The DOL states] that you need to first provide a notice, on paper, that the participant will be emailed/texted at a specific specified email address/smartphone number with the information necessary to access the website where the SPD will be posted. After that you would then email/text the notice (described as a 'notice of internet availability' in the final rule) that is similar to what you proposed be included in your new hire packet."  MORE >>

PLANSPONSOR; free registration may be required

Executive Compensation and Nonqualified Plans

[Official Guidance]

SEC Staff Issues Accounting Guidance on 'Spring-Loaded' Compensation Awards to Executives

"[SEC staff] released guidance for companies about how to properly recognize and disclose compensation cost for 'spring-loaded awards' made to executives. Spring-loaded awards are share-based compensation arrangements where a company grants stock options or other awards shortly before it announces market-moving information such as an earnings release with better-than-expected results or the disclosure of a significant transaction. According to Staff Accounting Bulletin (SAB) No. 120 ... non-routine spring-loaded grants merit particular scrutiny by those responsible for compensation and financial reporting governance at public companies."  MORE >>

U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission [SEC]

Employee Benefits Jobs

View job as Relationship Manager
for Compass Retirement Consulting Group, Inc. Relationship Manager

Compass Retirement Consulting Group, Inc.

Remote / MA / ME / NH

View job as Relationship Manager
for Compass Retirement Consulting Group, Inc.

View job as Health & Welfare Sales Consultant
for Alerus Health & Welfare Sales Consultant



View job as Compliance Consultant
for Corporate Synergies Group Compliance Consultant

Corporate Synergies Group

Remote / Camden NJ

View job as Retirement Plan Compliance Analyst
for Empower Retirement Retirement Plan Compliance Analyst

Empower Retirement


View job as Program Manager - DE
for Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation [PBGC] Program Manager - DE

Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation [PBGC]

Remote / Washington DC

View job as Enrolled Actuary
for Economic Group Pension Services (EGPS) Enrolled Actuary

Economic Group Pension Services (EGPS)


View job as Compliance Analyst
for Maxus Plan Solutions Compliance Analyst

Maxus Plan Solutions

Remote / Charlotte NC

View job as Account Manager
for BlueStar Retirement Services Inc. Account Manager

BlueStar Retirement Services Inc.

Remote / Ponte Vedra Beach FL

View job as Retirement Plan Consultant
for QRPS, Inc. Retirement Plan Consultant

QRPS, Inc.

Remote / NC

Press Releases

DATAIR Announces That Sam Venouziou Has Met All the Requirements to Be an Enrolled Actuary

DATAIR Employee Benefit Systems, Inc.

Industry Leaders Launch Operational Fiduciary Services Firm

Group Plan Systems [GPS]

Year-End Content at Helps Employees with Stock Compensation Planning Ahead of Uncertain Potential Tax Changes

Webcasts and Conferences
(Retirement Plans / Executive Compensation)

Ethics for Employee Benefit Practitioners (2021)

December 2, 2021 WEBCAST


RMDs: What You Need to Know Now

December 14, 2021 WEBCAST

Last Issue's Most Popular Items

Text of IRS PLR 202147015: Waiver of 60-Day Rollover Deadline for Roth Amounts Erroneously Deposited in Traditional IRA Account (PDF)

Internal Revenue Service [IRS]

In-Service Distributions from Defined Benefit Plans

Watkins Ross

Firms Beef Up Retirement Benefits to Attract and Retain Employees

Pensions & Investments

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

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