New Article in Employee Benefit Plan Review Says Yes!
CHICAGO, IL / ACCESSWIRE / October 4, 2022 / A new article in the current issue of Employee Benefit Plan Review poses a provocative but critical question to practitioners in the benefits planning industry: Fifteen years after the Pension Protection Act of 2006, has the time come for comprehensive review of a plan's qualified default investment alternative (QDIA)? Co-authors Tony Sabos and Mike Chard of ProManage, a firm based in Chicago that helps companies develop financial strategies for their retirement plan participants,' say yes!
'For defined contribution (DC) plans such as 401(k) plans, PPA was a watershed event,' Sabos and Chard write. 'PPA provided key provisions to improve the retirement readiness of DC plan participants with automatic features - namely, auto enrollment, auto escalation and ‘auto investment' via QDIA. These provisions cleverly used the inertia of plan participants to get them on a better path to saving for retirement. Over the last fifteen years, these auto features have been one key reason for improved retirement savings for many Americans - young and old.'
Yet now, fifteen years later the authors insist that plan sponsors should consider revisiting these key provisions. Although ERISA is clear, they say, about how plan fiduciaries should carry out their work, when it comes to selecting a plan's QDIA - perhaps the most visible and influential decision that plan fiduciaries make - one cannot overemphasize this fiduciary duty.
'But so much has changed since PPA was passed - demographics, investment products, technology - that a full review of this choice now seems warranted. With such a review, plan fiduciaries will be able to devise the best solution for their plan participants for the next fifteen years ... and beyond!'
To clarify their thinking, Sabos and Chard offer an outline of QDIA regulations published by the Department of Labor's Employee Benefits Security Administration in October 2007 with a fact sheet summarizing these rules in April 2008. This Fact Sheet highlights the key rules that plan fiduciaries must follow to receive safe harbor relief from fiduciary liability for investment outcomes, including a summary of four types of QDIAs. Sabos and Chard also address two key questions:
'Why have target date funds been traditionally the most dominant?'
'Why should fiduciaries revisit their QDIA selection now in 2022?'
The full article explores such questions in depth and will enlighten benefits planning professionals to the value of the article's premise, i.e., that the time has come for a 'full review' of every current plan's QDIA.
Publication Focus: Employee Benefit Plan Review ('EBPR') is a monthly national subscription-based journal published by Wolters Kluwer Law & Business that covers topics related to the management and administration of health and welfare benefits, pension benefits, employer communications, and compensation issues.
Author Bios: Co-author Tony Sabos is a managing member and the chief executive officer of ProManage, LLC. Co-author Michael Chard is the company's president. The authors may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com respectively or via ProManage's PR Contact Ken Lizotte CMC at firstname.lastname@example.org or 978-618-1164. Web: https://promanageplan.com/
Contact: Ken Lizotte, email@example.com or 978-618-1164.
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