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Fiduciary Governance

The official hurricane season has just begun (the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration says it starts June 1). But we’ve already had a tropical system in the Atlantic (Andrea) — and that serves as a reminder that it can be helpful to a service provider and plan administrator to prepare…... READ MORE
Whether you are a Game of Thrones aficionado – or haven’t watched a single episode – there are lessons to be learned nonetheless. Not only are there fiduciary admonitions from the HBO series, it turns out there are words of wisdom for individual retirement savers as well. Check these out. “When... READ MORE
The Department of Labor’s Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) is responsible for overseeing millions of employee benefit plans, including investigating retirement plans when necessary. A recent blog entry examines what an employer should know about that. In Thompson Coburn LLP’s blog... READ MORE
Words matter. Don’t think so? The publisher of a King James Bible in the 17th century who left out the word “not” in the commandment “thou shalt not commit adultery” and who suffered the consequences would beg to differ. And words matter in retirement plan communications as well, as recent analyses... READ MORE
Cyber threats morph and evolve as quickly as the technology and data they compromise. Speakers at SPARK’s national conference in Falls Church, VA suggested ways to protect against them. Evolving Challenges Wendy Young Carter, a VP and Defined Contribution Director, Public Sector at Segal Group,... READ MORE
The U.S. Supreme Court will, once again, take up the issue of where, and how, to draw the line between the obligations of corporate officials and ERISA plan fiduciaries. Specifically, the Supreme Court has now decided (Ret. Plans Comm. of IBM v. Jander, U.S., No. 18-1165, certiorari granted 6/3/19... READ MORE
The Department of Labor (DOL) is preparing to act on a variety of issues relevant to retirement plans and participants, according to a department official who offered an outline at a June 5 session of the SPARK national conference held in Falls Church, VA. Jeanne Klinefelter Wilson, Deputy... READ MORE
I was late to the Game of Thrones – and though its final season seems a bit “rushed” – there has been plenty to not only watch, but mull over in its eight-season run. And yet, as the series wound to a close, I kept thinking there were some lessons for retirement amidst the mayhem. ‘A man’s gotta... READ MORE
It’s often said that “if at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.” But that didn’t work for the plaintiffs in a suit challenging the use of a money market fund, rather than a stable value option. The plaintiffs here have been “trying” since February 2016, when they, represented by the St. Louis... READ MORE
There are many moving pieces and factors to keep track of regarding retirement plans and individual accounts. But two recent blog entries remind that despite the multiplicity of concerns and duties, it’s also important to keep one’s eyes on the ultimate prize and not forget the ultimate reason for... READ MORE
ASPPA is always providing information and insights that will be valuable to its members! Following is a summary of upcoming webcasts and events. Live Webcasts  ASPPA Webcast: Late Deferral/Loan Deposits and Form 5330Thursday, June 6, 2019 2:00–2:50 p.m. ET Speaker: Kristina Kananen, QPA QKA,... READ MORE
The federal government’s updated Spring 2019 unified regulatory agenda sheds some light on prospects for the Department of Labor’s next steps on a fiduciary rule revamp.  The DOL’s updated regulatory agenda confirms that the agency has set a target date of December 2019 to issue a Notice of... READ MORE
The fire and ice of dragons in winter – the stuff of mythology. But even the seemingly commonplace can incorporate a dash of mythology as well, as a speaker at the recent Plan Sponsor Council of America (PSCA) annual conference outlined – concerning, of all things, DC plans. In “Defined... READ MORE
So is there a retirement crisis or not? House Budget Committee members and experts who testified before the committee on May 15 did not agree. But at least they did concur on one thing: the need to take action to bolster the retirement readiness of those who are not well-prepared. Testifying... READ MORE
The 2019 Advisory Council on Employee Welfare and Pension Benefit Plans, a body that provides support and advice to the Department of Labor’s (DOL) Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA), has said that it will be reviewing transfers of uncashed checks from ERISA plans to state unclaimed... READ MORE
Under questioning at a May 1 hearing on Capitol Hill, Secretary of Labor Alexander Acosta appeared to confirm that the Department of Labor will issue a new fiduciary rule.  Acosta appeared before the House Education and Labor Committee for a hearing to examine the policies and priorities of the... READ MORE
It’s easy to assume that if everyone did their part individually, a team would function smoothly and efficiently, but group dynamics, synergy and demographics all can either contribute or detract from an investment committee’s effectiveness. A new white paper the firm Arnerich Massena, “Investment... READ MORE
Plan sponsors often gloss over the reality that they are ERISA fiduciaries – or think that if they have hired an advisor, they’ve basically hired a stand-in for that responsibility. But there’s another mistake that even the most well-intentioned make – with remarkable frequency, based on what I... READ MORE
Plan sponsors and service providers already take seriously their responsibilities to protect participant data, but where are the lines of responsibilities and accountability in the event of a breach? That was the focus of a workshop at the Plan Sponsor Council of America’s 2019 National Conference... READ MORE
Over the past decade and change, there have been a number of high-profile excessive fee suits brought against retirement plan fiduciaries, notably the plan committees that oversee these programs. Here’s what your plan committee members should know. 1. Why they are a member of the committee. Today... READ MORE

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