Happy New Year! It’s that time when we all vow to better ourselves in the months ahead. Resolutions abound, and they need not be limited to individual self-improvement. Employers too have many opportunities for betterment in the New Year. In the area of employee benefits, we offer these four goals for 2018.
The Supreme Court has decided an important statute of limitations issue in an ongoing fiduciary breach case, Tibble v. Edison International. Tibble has attracted attention up to this point for its substantive claim: that plan fiduciaries breached their duty of prudence when they failed to use the plan’s status as an institutional investor to gain an edge on fund fees. Instead of offering lower-cost institutional-class mutual funds, which were available to the plan because of its pooled investment resources, the plan fiduciaries in Tibble offered 401(k) plan participants the option of investing only in retail-class funds, with higher fees and expenses that were passed on to participants.
My colleague Patty Moran authored an advisory about reviewing Sarbanes-Oxley Blackout Notice Rules when changing a 401(k) investment fund. The advisory describes the origin of the Blackout Notice Rules, the rules’ requirements and penalties for noncompliance, and next steps.
Written by Ann Fievet
Last Friday, the IRS provided guidance on ways for employers to reduce or eliminate the employer contribution to a safe harbor 401(k) plan mid-year, guidance which employers looking to enhance their bottom lines will welcome with open arms. For employers who satisfy the employer contribution requirement of their safe harbor 401(k) plan through nonelective contributions, these new rules provide some additional flexibility and may warrant changes to the annual safe harbor notice for the 2014 plan year.