PLANADVISER Weekend Newsdash
Week ending June 12th, 2020

Greetings loyal PLANADVISER readers! With so many important and rapidly evolving national news stories playing out right now, it can be hard to keep track of more mundane matters like retirement plan litigation and regulations. Yet the fiduciary duties of prudence and loyalty remain paramount in the operation of tax-qualified retirement plans. With that in mind, collected below is a recap of some of the most important legal and regulatory developments of recent weeks. We hope you find the reporting helpful and consider sharing some of what you read with a client or colleague.

Editor's choice
DOL Issues Guidance About Private Equity Investments in DC Plans
An Information Letter addresses private equity investments as a component of a professionally managed asset allocation fund and outlines what plan fiduciaries should consider. Read more >
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. Read more >
IRS Provides Relief for Participant Elections Required to Be Witnessed
Notice 2020-42 provides temporary relief from the physical presence requirement for any participant election witnessed by a notary public in a state that permits remote notarization or witnessed by a plan representative using certain safeguards. Read more >
Opinion Letters for Pre-Approved DC Plans Coming
The IRS says it expects to issue the letters on June 30, or in some cases, as soon as possible thereafter, and an employer adopting a newly approved plan document will be required to do so by July 31, 2022. Read more >
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. Read more >
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. Read more >
Plaintiffs’ Attorneys: Leaving Pension Policing Solely to DOL Won’t Work
Part of the Supreme Court’s reasoning in affirming two lower court rulings in Thole v. U.S. Bank is the fact that the Department of Labor polices pension plan fiduciary violations, but plaintiffs’ attorneys say the resourced-strapped federal agency can’t do the job alone. Read more >
Supreme Court’s Thole v. U.S. Bank Ruling Has Constitutional Implications
Normally the Supreme Court strives to structure its rulings with the narrowest possible scope and implications, but that is not always the case. Read more >
MOST POPULAR STORIES
$300 Million Plan Faces ERISA Fiduciary Breach Lawsuit

The plan being challenged in the latest fiduciary breach lawsuit held less than $300 million as of the start of last year, making it one of the smallest to become the target of an ERISA complaint.

Three New ERISA Lawsuits Bash Actively Managed TDFs

Three new lawsuits question the offering of actively managed target-date funds to retirement plan participants.

Another Lawsuit Challenges Use of Untested CITs in 401(k) Plan

A similar lawsuit was filed in May against an investment manager and a different plan sponsor.

DOL Aims to Quickly Simplify Conflict of Interest Framework

The main theme of the new fiduciary rule proposal is alignment with other regulators—the SEC and FINRA in particular—but the agency is by no means surrendering its jurisdiction over tax-qualified retirement plans.

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.
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