PLANADVISER Weekend Newsdash
Week ending December 13th, 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
Proxy Voting Update on DOL Agenda
The DOL is aiming to “modernize fiduciary practices related to the voting rights associated with ERISA plan investments and harmonize those regulations with the requirements of other regulators.” Read more >
Supreme Court Hears Polarized Arguments in Intel ERISA Case
While not divided across political lines, the parties in Sulyma v. Intel Corporation Investment Policy Committee view the question of what establishes “actual knowledge” of an alleged fiduciary breach under ERISA very differently. Read more >
Senator Introduces Bill to Encourage Faster Student Debt Payoff
HELPER Act would allow Americans to annually take up to $5,250 from a 401(k), 403(b), 457 plan or IRA—tax and penalty free—to pay for college or pay back student loans. Read more >
Massachusetts Steps Closer to Stricter, Uniform Fiduciary Standard
Supporters of the Massachusetts proposal say the state-based regulations will be far more effective in tamping down on brokerage industry conflicts of interest compared with the national Regulation Best Interest. Read more >
1st Circuit Reverses Union Pension Liability Decision
As the appellate decision explains, ownership percentages are less important than organizations’ operating structures when determining withdrawal liability from a multiemployer union pension. Read more >
What Advisers Should Know About GDPR
While the GDPR does not directly address U.S. benefit plans, it should be of particular interest to defined contribution plan sponsors and their service providers because they hold personal information for each plan participant. Read more >
MOST POPULAR STORIES
The Retirement Crisis Is a Coverage Crisis
For those workers who are offered a retirement savings plan at work, the U.S. retirement system functions pretty well; solutions are needed, however, to extend coverage to millions more Americans.
First Hints of Potential New DOL Fiduciary Rule Emerge

The Department of Labor has submitted a draft regulation to the Office of Management and Budget.

Retirement Plan Cyberfraud Suit Moves On With Claims Against Both Parties

A federal judge previously moved forward ERISA claims against retirement plan providers and has recently allowed for a counterclaim by the providers against the plan sponsor.

Lawsuit Calls Into Question Reasons for Fund Changes

Plan participants allege prohibited transactions between a plan sponsor and its investment manager relating to a revamp of the plan's investment lineup.

Split Supreme Court Rules in Thole v. U.S. Bank; Major Implications for Pensions

The case is expected to help determine whether the millions of Americans whose pensions are held in defined benefit plans have the right to sue the fiduciaries of their plans for mismanaging assets, even when their own retirement benefit has not suffered.

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