PLANADVISER Weekend Newsdash
Week ending November 8th, 2019

For the casual observer, the shifting tangle of laws and regulations governing the behaviors of retirement plan fiduciaries can seem almost comically complex. For industry practitioners, wrestling with regulatory compliance is a daily battle, and one with potentially dire personal and professional consequences. Below you will find a roundup of significant regulatory events from 2019. We hope you’ll share some of what you read with a client or colleague.

Editor's choice
DOL Proposes New Electronic Disclosure Rule
The new rule would offer a safe harbor for sponsors that want to make retirement plan disclosures available on websites. Read more >
‘Smart Money’ Says 2nd Circuit Won’t Halt SEC Regulation Best Interest
Advisory firms waiting to see whether the 2nd Circuit will delay or outright halt the implementation of the SEC’s Regulation Best Interest are wasting precious time. Read more >
‘FINRA Settlement Expungement Process Is Broken,’ Former Regulator Says
FINRA is advancing a proposal to modernize the process by which brokers can clear their records of past customer disputes, but one former regulator questions whether the proposed approach fixes some fundamental issues of transparency and fairness for consumers. Read more >
State Insurance Regulators Seeking Harmony with Reg BI
The National Association of Insurance Commissioners is seeking to update its rules and restrictions on the sales of annuities so they better harmonize with the SEC’s Regulation Best Interest. Read more >
IRS Proposes Changes to Tables Used in RMD Calculations
The purpose of any such updates would be to increase the effectiveness of tax-favored retirement programs by allowing retirees to retain sufficient retirement savings in these programs for their later years, the IRS says. Read more >
DOL and SEC Weigh New Proxy Voting Standards
Both the Department of Labor and the Securities and Exchange Commission are revisiting their proxy voting rules, creating an opportunity for greater regulatory alignment. Read more >
MOST POPULAR STORIES
Stimulus Bill Extends Some Provisions of the CARES Act

It also provides a way for retirement plan sponsors to avoid a partial plan termination.

Coronavirus Hardship Withdrawals, Taxes and Your Retirement Plan Clients
Coronavirus-related withdrawals made in 2020 were a financial lifeline for some, but they could also turn into a major tax headache for others.
Many Near-Retirees Don't Understand Social Security Benefits

More than one-third failed a basic Social Security quiz administered by MassMutual.

Warn Your Clients: Don’t Abuse Coronavirus Hardship Withdrawals
Though retirement plans can allow individuals to self-certify that they qualify for a penalty-free coronavirus-related distribution, should the IRS discover otherwise during a future audit, a participant can be subject to substantial penalties.
The Most Common Retirement Plan Testing Mistakes

By alerting plan sponsors to the issues they see most often, advisers can help their clients navigate IRS testing rules.

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