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Auto Portability - Public Policy
Learn more about retirement savings public policy positions related to Auto Portability.
Key 401k Portability Finding in EBRI’s Retirement Confidence Survey
Writing in 401k Specialist, RCH's Tom Hawkins digs into EBRI's 2022 Retirement Confidence Survey (RCS), locating an interesting and valuable finding not referenced in the organization’s initial report, officially released to the public on Thursday, April 28th. In an excerpt of a report available to survey partners, the survey found that a plurality of job-changing 401(k) plan participants favor automatic plan-to-plan portability over consolidating their savings to an IRA, or to leaving their savings behind in their former employer’s plan. This result comes on the heels of EBRI’s 2021 survey, which found that nearly 9 in 10 participants believed that auto portability would be valuable to them. Hawkins adds that "others -- including the Department of Labor – could find 401(k) participants’ strong preference for plan-to-plan portability compelling."
How to Fill the ‘Leaky’ 401k Bucket
Writing in 401k Specialist, RCH’s Tom Hawkins opines on pending legislation that seeks to expand access for under-served and under-saved demographic segments, but may fall short if it fails to incorporate measures that minimize cashout leakage. Noting that SECURE 2.0’s expanded access provisions seek to benefit women, minorities and lower-income workers – the same demographic segments that cash out their small balance savings at disproportionate rates – Hawkins suggests that legislators consider inclusion of measures that would “spur more rapid adoption” of auto portability “by codifying into law the guidance issued by the Department of Labor and by creating modest tax incentives to encourage more early adoption of the feature.”
How could changing regulatory and business practices help to reduce 401(k) leakage?
Writing in their Research Minute blog, the DCIIA Retirement Research Center recaps a presentation by David John, senior strategic policy advisor at AARP, at their March 2022 RRC Summit. John shared current and ongoing research on retirement rollovers and the problem of plan leakage, including voicing his support for "supporting 'automatic portability' rollovers between employer plans when employees change jobs."
401k Auto Portability Featured in Senate HELP Committee Hearing
Writing in 401k Specialist Magazine, Renée Wilder Guerin, RCH’s EVP of Public Policy, examines the 3/29/22 hearing held by the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor & Pensions (HELP), which focused on solutions that would enhance retirement security for Americans, particularly those who are under-served and under-saved. Two of the four witnesses, WISER’s Cindy Hounsell and The Aspen Institute’s Ida Rademacher offered testimony highlighting the benefits of auto portability in leveling the playing field for women, minorities, and lower income workers. The latest hearing, writes Wilder Guerin “builds on previous Senate hearings and fuels growing momentum for auto portability among legislators, policymakers, advocacy groups, providers and plan sponsors.”
PSCA Executive Report Recaps Senate HELP Committee Hearing
PSCA's Executive Report provides its plan sponsor membership with highlights from the 3/29/22 U.S. Senate HELP Committee's hearing on improving retirement security. The hearing featured testimony from Cindy Hounsell, President and Founder of the Women’s Institute for a Secure Retirement (WISER), and Ida Rademacher (The Aspen Institute), who both addressed the need for improved retirement savings portability. Hounsell's testimony referenced three interventions that could help, including "auto-portability to help prevent workers who change jobs from cashing out their retirement savings. "
Senate HELP Committee to Act on Retirement Security Legislation
NAPA Net's Ted Godbout covers the 3/29/22 U.S. Senate HELP Committee's hearing on improving retirement security. The hearing featured testimony from Cindy Hounsell, President and Founder of the Women’s Institute for a Secure Retirement (WISER), and Ida Rademacher (The Aspen Institute), who both addressed the need for enhanced retirement savings portability. Hounsell's testimony referenced three interventions that could help, including "auto-portability to help prevent workers who change jobs from cashing out their retirement savings. "
Auto Portability May Help Manage Fiduciary Risk
Writing for 401kTV, Steff Chalk, Executive Director of The Retirement Advisor University, examines the perspective offered by RCH President & CEO Spencer Williams, whose recent article in BenefitsPro suggests that the Hughes v. Northwestern University ruling could expose plan sponsors to fiduciary risk related to excess cash-out leakage. Since auto portability acts to preserve retirement savings, Chalk writes that "auto portability may be making a grand entrance" and the recent developments "appear to make auto portability solutions worthy of sponsors’ consideration."
How to Improve Retirement Readiness in Under-represented Groups
ASPPA Net's Ted Godbout reviews the latest research report from Alight Solutions, entitled "Improving Retirement Readiness for Underrepresented Groups." Reporting on Alight's findings, Godbout highlights the six steps that Alight offers plan sponsors to increase retirement savings for historically under-represented groups. As one of those steps, Alight advises sponsors that "implementing auto-portability can help reduce the number of automatic cash-outs that occur when people change employers" and that auto portability's impact is "most profound for marginalized groups."