PLANADVISER Weekend Newsdash
Week ending April 3rd, 2020

Another week has passed as the United States and nations around the world grapple with the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. One big stimulus package has been passed by Congress, and debate has already started on follow up relief legislation. Moving forward, plan sponsors face tough choices about freeing up hardship withdrawals and expanding loan options for participants. Some may even choose to suspend contributions or take other drastic measures. As we tackle these challenges together, we hope you find some helpful information below, and encourage you to share some of what you read with a client or colleague.

Editor's choice
SEC Says Coronavirus Will Not Delay Reg BI, Form CRS
“The uncertainties caused by COVID-19 have not changed our perspective or commitment,” SEC Chairman Jay Clayton says. Read more >
Hard Choices Ahead About Easing Hardship Withdrawals
With the coronavirus pandemic causing acute financial harm to so many Americans, plan sponsors may feel compelled to offer hardship withdrawal relief in their plans; plan advisers can help them make the best decisions for their workforce by, for example, endorsing loans over outright withdrawals.  Read more >
Building Digital Connections in a Socially Distant World
Those few remaining advisers who have been reluctant to integrate digital communications as a core part of their client service strategies have little choice but to reconsider in this new world. Read more >
How to Run a Remote Advisory Firm
‘This is likely the moment we will become full-time remote and never go back,’ one adviser says. ‘The challenge will be maintaining camaraderie.’ Read more >
Staying Audit Ready in a Turbulent Time
As one might expect, what the Department of Labor (DOL) and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) are particularly interested in is how advisers are paid. 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.
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.
Many Near-Retirees Don't Understand Social Security Benefits

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

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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