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Retirement Plans Newsletter

May 10, 2022

3 New Job Opportunities 3 New Job Opportunities


[Guidance Overview]

Best Interest Standard of Care for Advisors, Part 90: Rollover Recommendations to Participants in Defined Benefit Plans

"Broker-dealers, investment advisers, banks and trust companies, and insurance companies need to ... have rollover recommendation solutions specifically designed for pooled plans such as defined benefit pension plans.... [W]hile many firms have rollover strategies for participant-directed plans, they do not for pooled plans. The differences in the information needed and the analytical approach are day-and-night."  MORE >>

Sixth Circuit Says Employee Consent to Arbitration Did Not Bind Plan in Putative Class Action

"Read in conjunction, Hawkins and Dorman indicate that an effective practice for plans wishing to arbitrate all ERISA Section 502 claims may be to expressly consent to arbitration within plan documents. Absent such consent, defendants run the risk of inadvertently excluding from arbitration derivative and representative claims under Section 502(a)(2)." [Hawkins v. Cintas Corp., No. 21-3156 (6th Cir. Apr. 27, 2022); Dorman v. The Charles Schwab Corp., No. 18-15281 (9th Cir. Aug. 20, 2019; also unpub. memo. opinion)]  MORE >>

Robinson & Cole LLP

Exceptional Usefulness and Quality icon Crypto and Digital Currencies Are Here to Stay: But Are They Welcome in Your 401(k)? (PDF)

"The tone of the [DOL's] Compliance Assistance will undoubtedly serve to chill most plan sponsors from recommending and offering crypto in their investment lineups. However, as the regulatory landscape becomes more established, and the ability to value crypto becomes more consistent and reliable, it is possible that the DOL may have a change of heart similar to its position on the inclusion of ESG-related investments as plan assets."  MORE >>

Ballard Spahr LLP, via Bloomberg Tax Management Compensation Planning Journal

Alert (High Risk Issue) icon New Underwriting Standards May Make Retirement Committee Members More Vulnerable to Personal Liability (PDF)

"Fiduciary liability insurers have taken note of the recent surge in lawsuits leveled against employers and their executives for allowing service providers to charge excessive fees to the retirement plans they sponsor and manage.... Changes in insurers' qualification examinations threaten liability coverage for thousands of plan sponsors and their plans' fiduciaries, adding a whole new dimension to their legal exposure. [The authors] explore in this article the new underwriting standards used by executive liability insurers and discuss ways to align with their requirements."  MORE >>

Roland Criss, via Journal of Compensation and Benefits

Key Considerations for DC Retirement Plan Committees Seeking Help

"The baseline premise of DC plan oversight -- making decisions for the sole benefit of plan participants -- is a significant undertaking in and of itself. Adding to the level of responsibility in no small measure is the increased fiduciary scrutiny of legislators and regulators, as well as the ongoing evolution of the retirement landscape.... [This article offers a series of themes] to help committees reflect on their own plan facts and circumstances.... [T]aking the time to consider these factors can be informative in assessing a DC Plan Consultant partner and selecting one that will enhance your plan's oversight activities."  MORE >>


Corporate Pension Funded Ratio Climbs to 106.7% in April

"As of April 30, the funded status for [the 100 largest U.S. corporate pension plans] improved by $48 billion, despite a monthly investment loss of 4.66%. A 78 basis-point increase in discount rates -- from 3.62% to 4.30% during April -- drove the improvement."  MORE >>


A Purpose-Driven Retirement Shifts Pre-Retirement Anxiety to Post-Retirement Bliss

"You spend your whole life earning money that goes to buying things. In addition, you've become accustomed to saving excess cash flow. When you retire, you flip the switch from being a saver to a spender.... After spending all this time fundamentally worrying about money, it turns out retirement is defined by much more than the size of one's checking account."  MORE >>

Fiduciary News; free registration required

Is It Too Soon for Retirees to Start Adjusting Discretionary Spending Because of Market Volatility?

"[Some retirees] like to make adjustments in their spending budget as the year progresses to avoid a larger change at the beginning of next year.... [The authors have added] several new items to [their Actuarial Financial Planner (AFP)] ... If you assume that all the investment losses from stock market decreases will occur in the Upside Portfolio, you can multiply the expected actuarial loss for the year by the Expected EOY Accumulated Savings (Upside) to get a feel for the present value of discretionary expenses that may need to be reduced as a result."  MORE >>

Ken Steiner, FSA Retired


American Bankers Association Comment Letter to DOL in Response to RFI on Possible Agency Actions to Protect Life Savings and Pensions from Threats of Climate-Related Financial Risk

"[S]ingling out climate-related financial risk for mandatory consideration and reporting, regardless of the actual presence or degree of its risk, [1] undercuts a plan fiduciary's authority and duty under ERISA to appropriately consider and manage all relevant risks, [2] imposes unnecessary costs to plans and their participants, and [3] undermines ERISA standards and Department regulations on investment duties that require deference to the judgment of the plan fiduciary rather than the substitution of the Department's judgment."  MORE >>

American Bankers Association

Benefits in General

How to Create the Best Workplace Benefits User Experience

"Firms that offer the best platforms, experiences and [user experience] will enhance the value of their benefits, increase employee engagement and drive better financial outcomes. [This article examines] five best practices that workplace benefits firms must follow to create a best-in-class digital experience."  MORE >>

Corporate Insight

Employee Benefits Jobs

View job as Benefits Specialist - Enrollments
          for Catholic Diocese of Arlington Benefits Specialist - Enrollments

Catholic Diocese of Arlington

Arlington VA

View job as Benefits Specialist - Enrollments
          for Catholic Diocese of Arlington

View job as Sr Retirement Plan Consultant
          for SetAway, LLC Sr Retirement Plan Consultant

SetAway, LLC

Remote / Bedford NH

View job as Sr Retirement Plan Consultant
          for SetAway, LLC

View job as 401(k) Consultant
          for Creative Retirement Systems 401(k) Consultant

Creative Retirement Systems

Remote / Cincinnati OH

View job as 401(k) Consultant
          for Creative Retirement Systems

Selected New Discussions

DC/DB Combo - Gateway Goes Into DC Plan?

"When we have a DC/DB combo plan, the 7.5% gateway contribution (I know it can be less than this, but generally 7.5% is viewed as the "safe harbor") comes exclusively into the DC plan, correct?"

BenefitsLink Message Boards

Can a Creditor Attach a Retirement Plan Account After the Participant's Death?

"Those of us who advise retirement plans' administrators often turn to two articles of faith: [1] Federal law generally, and ERISA particularly, supersedes and preempts most State laws. [2] A retirement plan's benefit cannot be assigned or alienated (except for a QDRO or the plan's offset against a breaching fiduciary's benefit). Has anyone experienced a situation in which a creditor tried to get a retirement plan to hold off on paying a beneficiary, asserting some right against the retirement plan?"

BenefitsLink Message Boards

Press Releases

CFPs, CEPs, and Others Can Now Get All or Most of Their CE Credits in myStockOptions Learning Center

Benefitfocus Hosts Investor Day and Provides an Update on Progress Against its Transformational Strategy


Modern Health Launches New Tools to Empower Employers to Better Support Employee Mental Health

Modern Health

Webcasts and Conferences
(Retirement Plans / Executive Compensation)

457(b) Governmental and Tax-Exempt Plans Update

June 16, 2022 WEBCAST


Hot Issues in Executive Compensation 2022

September 9, 2022 WEBCAST

PLI [Practising Law Institute]

Last Issue's Most Popular Items

Data Breach Class Action Lawsuit Targets Retirement Plan Consulting Firm

American Retirement Association [ARA]

Senator Warren Taken to Task for 'Misplaced,' 'Misinformed' and Ultimately Toothless Letter to Fidelity about Bitcoin-Inclusive 401(k) Menus


Insights from the First 25 Excessive Fee and Investment Imprudence Cases of 2022

Euclid Specialty Managers

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

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