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Retirement Plans Newsletter

July 10, 2024

4 New Job Opportunities 4 New Job Opportunities


[Guidance Overview]

To Rewrite or Not Rewrite the Pension Risk Transfer Regs, That Is the Question

"The [DOL] may consider amending its nearly three-decade-old guidance for defined benefit pension plans seeking to offload their payment obligations to insurance companies, although it considers this guidance to still be relevant, according to a new report to Congress.... Some advocates have recommended that plan fiduciaries be required to focus on the ownership structure of annuity providers and the extent to which the annuity provider relies on nontraditional and potentially riskier investments."  MORE >>

Sidley Austin LLP


Webinar -- Overpayments: Regulations, Response, Ramifications

Join us on Tuesday, July 16 to learn about preventing overpayments, partnering with beneficiaries when an overpayment is made, regulations and SECURE 2.0, and the rights of the pensioner. Panelists: Norman Stein, Brigen Winters and Mike Schoonveld.

Sponsored by Berwyn Group

[Guidance Overview]

Exceptional Usefulness and Quality icon User's Guide to SECURE 2.0 (PDF)

42 pages. "[T]his guide provides a high-level summary of SECURE 2.0 provisions grouped topically, including separate treatment of provisions specific to DC and DB plans. The six tables in this guide describe statutory changes and their effective dates, identify whether the changes are mandatory or optional for employers, and provide observations, including implementation challenges."  MORE >>


New York City Pension Plan ESG Suit Is Thrown Out

"[T]he retirees' benefits are ultimately backstopped by city taxpayers in the event the investments fall short. Therefore, the plaintiffs' pension benefits will by definition not be affected by the fossil fuel divestment decision or the outcome of the litigation, so the plaintiffs could show no alleged injury as is required to have standing to assert claims." [Wong v. NYCERS, TRS and BERS, No. 652297/2023 (NY Cty. Sup. Ct. Jul. 3, 2024)]  MORE >>

Ropes & Gray LLP

Employees Want Employers to Provide More Savings Opportunities

"79% of employees surveyed want more savings opportunities, and 70% prioritize 'rainy day funds.' ... The personal savings rate declined to 3.6% in April 2024 (compared to 8.1% in August 2019) and accumulated savings have dwindled, especially among lower-income Americans.... [E]mployees have started to expect more support from their employers."  MORE >>

Inspira Financial

Multiemployer Pension Plan News for Q3 2024

"[1] The zone-status breakdown of plans in [the Segal] Survey of Plans' Zone Status for 2021 to 2024.... [2] PBGC death audits of plans that received Special Financial Assistance (SFA).... [3] The resurgence of interest in defined benefit (DB) plans.... [4] A lawsuit on actuarial equivalence.... [5] Pension plan de-risking and potential impact of prior elections.... [6] Elevated valuations and earnings growth."  MORE >>


Pension Funding Index, July 2024

"The funded status of the 100 largest U.S. corporate defined benefit pension plans maintained its $46 billion surplus in June while the funded ratio rose from 103.6% at the end of May to 103.7% as of June 30 ... The mid-year funded ratio is ahead of the 99.5% funded ratio seen at the start of 2024."  MORE >>


RetireReady NJ Launches Statewide Retirement Savings Program

"Established by the New Jersey Secure Choice Savings Program Act, RetireReady NJ is a State-administered retirement savings program that aims to reach workers who do not have access to private employer retirement plans. New Jersey businesses with 25 or more employees that have been in business for two years or more and do not currently offer a qualified retirement plan will be required to register with the program."  MORE >>


Individuals Working with a Financial Advisor Save More, Retire Sooner

"Americans with an advisor expect to retire at age 64, which is a full two years sooner than Americans who don't work with an advisor. They also have saved twice as much money for retirement than those who do not have an advisor: $132,000 vs. just $62,000."  MORE >>

401(k) Specialist

Advisor Attrition Remains an Ongoing Risk for Firms

"[S]lightly more than a third (34%) of employee advisors and roughly 4 in 10 (41%) independent advisors who are more than two years from retirement say they may not stay with their current firm in the next one to two years.... 28% of employee advisors and 52% of independent advisors have worked for three or more firms during their career[.]"  MORE >>

American Retirement Association [ARA]


Why Not Pool Longevity Risk with Lifetime Income Solutions?

"Auto-enrollment in a target date fund puts the individual in a default investment that is likely best for them. Then, of course, the participant can choose another menu item if it's a better fit. So why don't employers auto-enroll people into target date funds that provide lifetime income? They fail to do so because they fear there are trade-offs that might not be appropriate for everyone. And indeed, this would be the right decision if those trade-offs were in fact necessary."  MORE >>

American Retirement Association [ARA]

Benefits in General

[Official Guidance]

Text of EBSA Request for Nominations: Advisory Council on Employee Welfare and Pension Benefit Plans

"The terms of five Council members expire at the end of this year. The groups or fields they represent are as follows: [1] Employee organizations; [2] employers; [3] the general public; [4] actuarial counseling; and [5] investment counseling.... Nominations must be received on or before [45 days after date of publication in the Federal Register, which is currently scheduled for July 11, 2024]."  MORE >>

Employee Benefits Security Administration [EBSA], U.S. Department of Labor [DOL]

[Official Guidance]

IRS Disaster Relief Notice WV-2024-04, for Taxpayers in West Virginia

"[I]ndividuals and businesses in West Virginia that were affected by severe storms, flooding, landslides, and mudslides that began on April 11, 2024 ... now have until Nov. 1, 2024, to file various federal individual and business tax returns and make tax payments.... [I]ndividuals and households that reside or have a business in Boone, Brooke, Doddridge, Gilmer, Hancock, Kanawha, Lincoln, Marshall, Ohio, Roane, Tyler, Wetzel and Wood counties qualify for tax relief."  MORE >>

Internal Revenue Service [IRS]

How the SCOTUS Chevron Ruling Affects Benefit Plans

"The courts may now examine regulations in more detail, depending on the authority given to the regulators by the applicable statute.... [We] may see even fewer regulations and more reliance on subregulatory guidance.... The result ... may be more uncertainty for a longer time and likely contrary decisions in the different courts of appeal." [Loper Bright Enterprises, Inc. v. Raimondo, Sec. of Comm., No. 22-451 (S. Ct. Jun. 28, 2024)]  MORE >>


FTC Non-Compete Rule: Where Are We, and Where Do We Go from Here?

"Given the narrow scope of the Court's injunction, businesses will still have to take a wait-and-see approach until July 23, 2024, or August 30, 2024, and keep in mind that issuing written notices to workers that their non-competes will be unenforceable may constitute a waiver of the right to enforce them if the Rule does not become effective September 4, 2024. In the event of an adverse final determination, the FTC is likely to appeal the order to the Fifth Circuit, and the issue may appear before the Supreme Court as early as next year." [Ryan LLC v. Federal Trade Commission (no. 24-0986 (N.D. Tex. Jul. 3, 2024)]  MORE >>

Jackson Walker

Employer Considerations While Awaiting Further District Court Action on the FTC Non-Compete Ban:

"While it may be likely that the FTC ultimately will not be permitted to enforce the ban against any employer, the uncertainty of when such an order will be entered leaves employers who use non-competes with tough choices in the coming weeks." [Ryan LLC v. Federal Trade Commission (no. 24-0986 (N.D. Tex. Jul. 3, 2024)]  MORE >>

Jackson Lewis P.C.

Employee Benefits Jobs

View job as Retirement Plan Consultant for Concierge Retirement Services, Inc.

Retirement Plan Consultant

Concierge Retirement Services, Inc.


View job as Retirement Plan Consultant for Concierge Retirement Services, Inc.

View job as Enrolled Actuary for Concierge Retirement Services, Inc.

Enrolled Actuary

Concierge Retirement Services, Inc.


View job as Enrolled Actuary for Concierge Retirement Services, Inc.

View job as Retirement Operations Implementation Specialist for Alerus

Retirement Operations Implementation Specialist


Remote / MN / ND

View job as Retirement Operations Implementation Specialist for Alerus

View job as Employee Benefits Associate for Shipman & Goodwin LLP

Employee Benefits Associate

Shipman & Goodwin LLP

Remote / CT

View job as Employee Benefits Associate for Shipman & Goodwin LLP

Selected New Discussions

5500-SF: Can I Manually Mark 5558 Box?

"I sent a 5500-SF to a client for signature. I suspect the client will sign and send it back to me after 7/31 even though I instructed otherwise. I plan on filing an extension. If the client signs the 5500SF that doesn't have the 5558 box X'd in by the software, can I manually fill in the 5558 box on the 5500-SF that he signed? Or do I need to go back to him and have him sign a new 5500-SF with an X in the 5588 box generated by the software?"

BenefitsLink Message Boards

ERISA 403(b) Plan Was a MEP, But 5500s Filed as Controlled Group

"An ERISA 403(b) plan -- large plan, audited -- was treated as a controlled group/affiliated services group for several years, when in fact, it was not -- it was a MEP. 5500 forms did NOT have the MEP attachment. If amended forms are filed with the MEP attachment, would that require a new audit? It seems unreasonable, as nothing changes except the attachment detailing the breakdown of the assets between the participating employers -- total assets, participant counts, etc., remain the same. Anyone ever encountered this?"

BenefitsLink Message Boards

Tax Consequences of QDRO Payments and Payment of DB from 'Net' Annuity Payments.

"There is no question that, except for defined benefit plan payments made to a spouse or former spouse for child support, the amount paid to a spouse or former spouse via a QDRO (as alimony or as an allocation of property) is taxable income to the alternate payee.... For the first time is 38 years of preparing QDROs I have an attorney for the Participant insisting that the allocation of a defined benefit plan be computed with respect to the 'net' (not the gross) annuity payments paid to the participant, that is, net of the participants state and federal tax withholding, Social Security and Medicare taxes, health insurance and life insurance premiums, and the cost of the survivor annuity. I pointed out that we NEVER use 'net' since the amount is subject to manipulation by the participant and because is forces the alternate payee to pay part of the participant's taxes, but I have been looking for a learned treatise, or law review article, or even caselaw, that sets forth a better and more authoritative argument. Anybody?"

BenefitsLink Message Boards

Press Releases

TriNet Announces Appointment of Healthcare Industry Veteran Brian Evanko to Board of Directors

TriNet Group

Webcasts and Conferences
(Retirement Plans / Executive Compensation)

FTC’s Final Noncompete Rule: Developing Your Game Plan


McDermott Will & Emery LLP

ERISA Fiduciary Law Series, Part 4: ERISA Excesive Fees


Professional Liability Underwriting Society [PLUS]

Advisor Relationships: Going from Love/Hate to Great

August 1, 2024 WEBINAR

ASPPA [American Society of Pension Professionals & Actuaries]

Employee Benefit Plans of Tax-Exempt and Governmental Employers 2024

October 31, 2024 WEBINAR

ALI CLE [American Law Institute Continuing Legal Education]

Last Issue's Most Popular Items

Stanley Black and Decker Loses Motion to Dismiss 401(k) Lawsuit Over BlackRock TDFs

Pensions & Investments

EBSA's Lisa Gomez Talks About Retirement Plan Cybersecurity

American Retirement Association [ARA]

SPARK Institute and American Benefits Council Request IRS Guidance Confirming Paper Filing of Form 5330 Permitted for All Employers (PDF)

SPARK Institute and American Benefits Council

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

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