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Hello ACOPA – It has been a tiring first three months of 2019, work-wise. January Madness did not stop with March as we dealt with March 15 deadlines. The April 15 deadline is fast approaching with a new burst of stress. Summer can’t arrive soon enough as it brings on vacation time, summer... READ MORE
In 2013, I responded to an ad on our beloved ACOPA discussion board to volunteer for the EA2-L Exam Writer’s committee. For those who don’t know, EA2-L is what I like to call the “everything but the funding law” exam. It is an incredible way to remain sharp on topics that you might see day-to-day... READ MORE
This column is to update ACOPA members on the view of progress from the President of ACOPA. Much ACOPA leadership time in recent months has been spent on responding to September 2018 actions of the American Academy of Actuaries. To briefly review, the Academy voted to remove ACOPA and the... READ MORE
Recently, many of our colleagues have received inquiries about “401(h) plans.” A 401(h) is not a type of plan but rather an ancillary benefit of a defined benefit plan. A 401(h) account provides a highly efficient way to fund retiree health benefits. Contributions to the account are tax-deductible... READ MORE
The Plan Sponsor Council of America (PSCA), part of the American Retirement Association (ARA), has launched a new and innovative education program and credential: the Certified Plan Sponsor Professional (CPSP™). Developed by plan sponsors in collaboration with education experts at ARA and some of... READ MORE
The leaders of the Senate Finance Committee, Chairman Charles Grassley (R-IA) and Ranking Member Ron Wyden (D-OR), have introduced the Retirement Enhancement and Savings Act (RESA) once again. The Senate action comes as members of the House Ways & Means Committee are poised to pass its own... READ MORE
Concluding that “DOL’s Final Rule stretches the definition of ‘employer’ beyond what ERISA’s text and purpose will bear,” a federal judge has thrown the Labor Department’s association health plan rule for a loss.  The association health plan (AHP) rule, finalized last June, claimed to make... READ MORE
A federal appeals court has affirmed summary judgment in a class action suit involving 270,000 plan participants across more than 13,000 plans. The suit was filed in 2015 by plaintiff John Teets, a participant in the Farmers’ Rice Cooperative 401(k) Savings Plan, which had contracted with Great-... READ MORE
The parties in one of the oldest excessive fee suits have finally come to terms. Those parties – Tussey v. ABB – settled for $55 million which, if approved by a federal judge, would bring to conclusion litigation that was filed in 2005 by Schlichter Bogard & Denton.  The suit had alleged that... READ MORE
While noting that the case “presents novel legal questions concerning state-mandated retirement savings accounts,” and “implicates a significant body of judicial and regulatory interpretations of ERISA,” a federal judge has ruled – for the moment – that California’s state-run auto IRA retirement... READ MORE
Key members of Congress have introduced separate legislation to revamp the Internal Revenue Service as well and to make it easier for small businesses to offer retirement benefits.  Taxpayer First Act of 2019 House Ways & Means Oversight Subcommittee Chairman John Lewis (D-GA), Ranking Member... READ MORE
The House Ways & Means Committee has unveiled bipartisan retirement security legislation that it plans to consider April 2.  According to committee Chairman Richard Neal (D-MA), the committee will convene a markup that day to consider several bills, including the Setting Every Community Up for... READ MORE
New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy (D) has signed legislation establishing a state-run retirement savings plan for private-sector employees whose employers do not offer a retirement plan. Murphy signed the bill establishing the New Jersey Secure Choice Savings Program into law on March 28. The state... READ MORE
It’s not exactly news that staying on the job past one's normal retirement age is a growing phenomenon. Of course, that has a direct effect on the employees who decide to prolong their tenure, but it has implications for employers and plans as well. Among them is how to handle pension payments in... READ MORE
Earlier this month, we told you about a proposed new tax that could have a dramatic impact on retirement savings. To help bring attention to this critical issue, American Retirement Association CEO Brian Graff has authored an article that has just appeared in The Hill, a popular news source for... READ MORE
To outsource or not to outsource: That is the question. Okay, that’s not what the Bard of Avon wrote. But it is the focus of a recent blog entry that outlines the advantages and disadvantages of outsourcing decisions about how a retirement plan’s funds are to be invested. “The responsibility for a... READ MORE
What’s in a fund name? More – and less – than you might imagine.  According to a new paper by academics at Kansas State, Saint Louis University and Seton Hall, along with a researcher at the Ipsos Behavioral Science Center, when a participant searches through her plan’s menu of investment options... READ MORE
While today’s employees feel confident in their finances, the reality of their situations is not aligned with this confidence, a new report shows.  According to MetLife’s 17th annual U.S. Employee Benefit Trends Study, nearly two out of three people say they are confident in their finances, but... READ MORE
The House Ways & Means Committee will consider legislation on April 2 to expand retirement savings opportunities and reform the IRS’s administration and operating procedures, according to multiple press reports.   The outline for the legislation – the “Chairman’s mark” – could be released as... READ MORE
Sometimes whether news is good or bad depends on one’s perspective. Case in point: the Government Accountability Office (GAO) has updated its 2015 report on retirement security and savings in households headed by people approaching retirement age. The updated report contains fodder for optimists... READ MORE

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