DOL proposed redefinition of ERISA fuduciary – Best Interest PTE

The Department of Labor’s proposed regulation package re-defining who is an ERISA ‘fiduciary’ as a result of the provision of investment advice (an ‘investment advice fiduciary’) would re-label many relationships as ‘fiduciary’ that, under current rules, are not so labeled. The proposed regulation includes a ‘seller’s carve out’ for incidental advice in connection with arm’s… Read More

Mandatory changes to French Health Care

Effective January 1, 2016, employers will become directly responsible for obtaining private sector insurance for their employees and paying at least 50% of the premiums. Historically, France’s health care system has been primarily funded by the French government and supplemented with optional private insurance policies. In an attempt to provide greater coverage to all employees,… Read More

Pension regulatory and legislative update – May 2015

In this Current outlook we review a number of recent developments: DOL’s new rule providing a 2-month ‘cushion’ for the annual statement deadline; IRS’s extension of its ‘closed plan’ relief to 2016; Congressional questioning about why the SEC is not more involved in the conflicted advice regulation project; the reintroduction of the SEAL Act, providing… Read More

DOL re-proposes rules redefining ERISA ‘fiduciary’

On April 14, 2015, the Department of Labor released its long-awaited re-proposal of a regulation re-defining ‘fiduciary’ under ERISA. In connection with that proposal it also proposed two new prohibited transaction exemptions (PTEs) and amendments (and revocations) of certain prior PTEs. With this proposed regulation ‘package’ DOL is expanding those situations in which giving investment… Read More

IRS provides safe harbor for correcting missed pension contributions

Under IRS’s Employee Plans Compliance Resolution System (EPCRS), if a 401(k) plan sponsor fails to make a contribution that an employee has elected, ‘correction’ generally requires that the sponsor, among other things, make a contribution equal to 50% of the employee’s ‘missed deferral.’ In Revenue Procedure 2015-28, released on April 2, 2015, IRS provided two… Read More

Reducing PBGC variable rate premiums: contribution timing

Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation variable-rate premiums have been going up dramatically. The simple way to think about this premium is as a tax on underfunding. That tax went from 0.9% in 2013 to 2.4% in 2015. In 2016 it will be 2.9% or 3.0% (the percentage is indexed to average national wage increases) – more… Read More

Paris Marathon with Abelica Global to support Multiple Sclerosis

On April 12th, a member of our staff will be running the Schneider Electric Paris Marathon as part of the Abelica Global team to benefit Multiple Sclerosis research. AG will be sponsoring a team of nine runners selected from their member firms, which represents five countries – France, Channel Islands, Canada, Belgium and United States…. Read More

NERA Response to Administration conflicted advice proposal

In this article we review the paper, Review of the White House Report Titled “The Effects of Conflicted Investment Advice on Retirement Savings,” by National Economic Research Associates, for Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association, released on March 16, 2015. The NERA paper criticizes the ‘White House Report,’ prepared by the Council of Economic Advisors… Read More

GAO issues de-risking report

On February 26, 2015, the Government Accountability Office issued a report: Participants Need Better Information When Offered Lump Sums That Replace Their Lifetime Benefits. The report provides a useful summary of the current state of de-risking, focusing on transactions in which participants are offered a ‘lump sum window’ – a limited-time offer to certain participants… Read More

Administration support for new conflict of interest rule

On February 23, 2015, the Department of Labor sent to the Office of Management and Budget a proposal for a “new conflict of interest rule.” At the same time, the White House released a report by the Council of Economic Advisors (CEA) on The Effects Of Conflicted Investment Advice On Retirement Savings and a Fact… Read More

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