Important Update to Investors and 401k Plan Sponsors and Individual IRA account owners: The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) published The final rule to address the conflicts of interest regarding retirement advice. This new rule will become “effective” on April 10, 2017. Financial professionals who provide investment advice to Plan Sponsors and Participants in the 401(k) Retirement Plans and Individual IRA’s will have new Fiduciary responsibilities. So will the Fiduciary duties of Business Owners who are Plan Sponsors of 401(k) Plans. While aimed at financial advisors who provide retirement plan services, the final rule will impact compliance obligations and costs for plan sponsors as well, regulatory experts say.
We recommend that 401(k) Plan Sponsors rediscover what their roles as a fiduciary are, and how they and their advisor, record keeper and TPA are acting in light of these new changes. Plan Sponsors can expect change to occur quickly regarding their current plans, including additional paperwork, responsibilities and costs. Now may be a good time to re-evaluate the relationship you have with your advisor, record keeper and TPA, at the very least to gain clarity on the fiduciary relationship with your 401(k) plan. Plan sponsors need to take steps now to ensure that they are prepared to meet their new obligations.