Auto Portability - Recent Developments
Find the most-recent auto portability media coverage and developments.
PLANSPONSOR's Rebecca Moore reports on the U.S. Department of Labor's (DOL) issuance of an advisory opinion letter, focusing on plan sponsors' responsibilities as identified by the DOL. Moore notes that plan sponsors have a fiduciary responsibility for selecting and monitoring the auto portability program, but once assets are transferred to a default IRA under the program, the plan sponsor of the former employer's plan is no longer a fiduciary.
NAPA Net's Ted Godbout reports on the U.S. Department of Labor's (DOL) recent issuance of an advisory opinion regarding Retirement Clearinghouse's (RCH) auto portability program, occurring "mere days after publishing a request for comments on a proposed exemption." Godbout examines specific aspects of the advisory opinion, including the creation of a safe harbor for plan sponsors who accept automated transfers, as well as the fiduciary status of RCH in deciding to transfer default IRA funds.
The Wagner Law Group, specialists in ERISA and employee benefits law, summarize the recent DOL actions on auto portability, including their Advisory Opinion and proposed exemption, both for the Retirement Clearinghouse (RCH) auto portability program. The authors examine both actions, summarizing their findings, and identify the potential considerations and fiduciary implications for plan sponsors considering participation in an auto portability program.
In her 11/12/18 article in The Wall Street Journal, reporter Anne Tergesen addresses the pair of recent DOL actions that give Retirement Clearinghouse (RCH) a green light to move forward with its auto portability program. In support of the DOL's actions, Tergesen cites industry statistics on 401(k) leakage for job-changing participants, quoting industry figures from Morningstar, Boston College's Center for Retirement Research and former U.S. Treasury official Mark Iwry. Tergesen turns to RCH Chief Executive Spencer Williams, who addresses RCH's objectives in obtaining DOL guidance, as well as RCH's views on the benefits of the auto portability program.
The Department of Labor (DOL) has issued Advisory Opinion 2018-01A on RCH Auto Portability, which can be accessed on the DOL’s website at this link. The DOL’s Advisory Opinion states that defined contribution plan sponsors who accept automatic rollover contributions under auto portability will not be a fiduciary with respect to those contributions. This fiduciary “safe harbor” represents an important step to facilitate auto portability’s widespread adoption by plan sponsors, as well as their recordkeepers.
PRESS RELEASE - Robert L. Johnson Welcomes Department of Labor’s Advisory Opinion on Auto Portability
Robert L. Johnson, Founder and Chairman of The RLJ Companies and majority owner of Retirement Clearinghouse, applauds the U.S. Department of Labor for providing guidance to retirement plan sponsors, clearing the path to widespread adoption of auto portability and enabling millions of Americans to effortlessly preserve their hard-earned retirement savings as they change jobs.
Financial Advisor IQ reporter Alex Padalka reports on the Department of Labor (DOL) request for comments on a proposal aiming to reduce leakage from 401(k) plans when employees change jobs -- a program developed by Retirement Clearinghouse (RCH) known as auto-portability. The proposal would give RCH a five-year exemption from certain restrictions, allowing the automatic transfer of 401(k) balances to a new employer plan. The comment period, notes Padalka, ends Dec. 24th.
ThinkAdvisor's Melanie Waddell reports on the DOL's proposed ERISA exemption for Retirement Clearinghouse's auto portability program, which is intended to make retirement account balances easier to move from job to job.