Seven Prominent Universities Sued Over 403(b) Plan Fees

The 403(b) community has become the target of retirement plan fee litigation. Lawsuits have been filed against Duke, Johns Hopkins, MIT, NYU, UPenn, Vanderbilt, and Yale on behalf of plan participants. The complaints allege that the plan sponsors failed to monitor excessive fees, did not replace expensive, poor-performing funds with cheaper ones, and generally failed to provide appropriate fiduciary oversight in the administration of their retirement plans. These complaints allege that these failures cost tens of millions of dollars in retirement funds. While 401(k) plan sponsors are more than familiar with these types of claims, this is the first time that nonprofit organizations have been targeted. Read more about the recent lawsuits here and here.

Prestigious Colleges and Universities Sued over Retirement Plan Fees

Are the services your plan receives reasonably priced? Knowing the answer is a vital fiduciary duty. ERISA expects more from plan fiduciaries than simply shopping around for plan providers offering rock bottom rates. Rather, the question turns on whether fees are reasonable in light of services provided. So, in addition to knowing how much the plan is paying, you must determine whether the level of service rendered is appropriate. As a plan sponsor, you should: (more…)

Employee Benefits Update: June/July 2016

This issue’s topics include:

DOL liberalizes views on economically targeted investments

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has reversed guidance it issued in 2008 with respect to retirement plans’ allocating funds to economically targeted investments (ETIs) that consider environmental, social and governance factors. This article discusses the DOL’s about-face on this topic. A sidebar discusses whether plan fiduciaries are required to do anything new with respect to ETIs.

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Employee Benefits Update: April/May 2016

This issue’s topics include:

Plan fee benchmarking
Key fiduciary considerations when reviewing plan fees

Are the services a plan receives reasonably priced? Knowing the answer is a vital fiduciary duty. ERISA expects more from plan fiduciaries than simply shopping around for plan providers offering rock bottom rates. This article summarizes some key areas all fiduciaries must consider when benchmarking costs of their qualified retirement plan. A sidebar discusses a report that suggests ways employers can help current plan participants ease into retirement.

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Employee Benefits Update: February/March 2016

This issue’s topics include:

  • IRS eases pain for correcting certain plan administration errors
  • What are you forgetting? Reviewing commonly overlooked fiduciary duties
  • It may be time to offer annuity options to 401(k) plan participants
  • Shut the door: IRS ends defined benefit plan lump sum payouts

 Employee Benefits Update February March 2016 Click Here to Download

As always, we hope you enjoy this edition of our newsletter and we look forward to receiving your feedback. Should you have any questions regarding the information contained in the attached materials or our service offerings, please feel free to contact me directly.

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Employee Benefits Update: Year End 2015

This issue’s topics include:

  • Determination letter limbo: IRS makes changes to determination letter program
  • Tibble case puts focus on fiduciaries’ ongoing duties
  • Give employees more bang for their buck: How to use default deferral rates and auto-escalation clauses
  • Is a customized TDF right for you?

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As always, we hope you enjoy this edition of our newsletter and we look forward to receiving your feedback. Should you have any questions regarding the information contained in the attached materials or our service offerings, please feel free to contact me directly.

Employee Benefits Update: October/November 2015

This issue’s topics include:

  • Be careful what you toss: Plan record retention requirements
  • Year end notices: Staying on top of the requirements
  • Survey says…Poll highlights what participants think they know
  • When electronic disclosure isn’t enough under ERISA

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As always, we hope you enjoy this edition of our newsletter and we look forward to receiving your feedback. Should you have any questions regarding the information contained in the attached materials or our service offerings, please feel free to contact me directly.

Employee Benefits Update: August/September 2015

This issue’s topics include:

  • 401(k) rollovers: How rollovers to your plan can benefit everyone
  • DOL reproposes ERISA fiduciary investment advice regulations
  • Are you insured? Fiduciary liability insurance can help when problems arise
  • Court finds that plan document trumps beneficiary designation forms
  • Compliance alert

Employee Benefits Update August/September 2015

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As always, we hope you enjoy this edition of our newsletter and we look forward to receiving your feedback. Should you have any questions regarding the information contained in the attached materials or our service offerings, please feel free to contact me directly.

Employee Benefits Update: April/May 2015

In this issue we highlight the importance of reviewing your plan operations and key fiduciary tasks. We summarize plan loan requirements that all plan fiduciaries should know, and take a look at some common questions regarding plan audits. We also discuss what happens when a plan fiduciary communicates with an attorney about an ERISA-covered retirement plan, and we list a few key tax reporting deadlines for April and May.

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As always, we hope you enjoy this edition of our newsletter and we look forward to receiving your feedback. Should you have any questions regarding the information contained in the attached materials or our service offerings, please feel free to contact me directly.

Top 10 Governance & Operational Issues for Your Defined Contribution Plan

Join our panel of experts for a discussion of the Top 10 Governance & Operational Issues for Your Defined Contribution Plan. Learn what to know before the auditors knock on your door. Highlights include:

  • ERISA fiduciary best practices
  • Practical insights from recent lawsuits
  • Common operational errors
  • Self-correction strategies

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Click Here for More Information and Registration

When: Thursday, April 30, 2015, 7:30 AM, Breakfast/Networking, 8:00 AM – 10:00 AM, Panel Discussion (Add to Calendar)
Where: Country Club of Rochester, 2935 East Avenue, Rochester, NY 14610
Cost: Free of Charge. Registration Required.
Panelists: Leslie Whitney, AIF, Fiduciary Investment Advisors, Jennifer Martlew, CPA, CFE, Insero & Company CPAs, P.C., Christian Hancey, Esq. and Eric Paley, Esq., Nixon Peabody.

To receive updates on future events, please join our mailing list.

Employee Benefits Update: February/March 2015

This issue’s topics include:

  • Navigating ERISA’s comprehensive plan document disclosure rules
  • IRS checklist offers a convenient compliance self-checkup
  • Who are functional fiduciaries? Appeals court holds service provider not a plan fiduciary
  • 2014 vs. 2015 retirement plan limits

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As always, we hope you enjoy this edition of our newsletter and we look forward to receiving your feedback. Should you have any questions regarding the information contained in the attached materials or our service offerings, please feel free to contact me directly.