With most retirement plans the fiduciary responsibility of selecting and monitoring the plan’s menu of investments is designated to a retirement plan investment committee. This committee usually includes financial officers and human resources officers of the employer. The committee meets periodically (anywhere from annually to quarterly) to consider agenda items including investment due diligence, fees and services of plan providers, status of plan goals, etc. … Continue reading What Constitutes Proper Documentation of Retirement Plan Committee Meetings?
The Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) holds fiduciaries to a standard of prudence when making investment-related decisions for a qualified ERISA plan. The Department of Labor (DOL) and the courts have largely determined that said standard of prudence can best be determined by a fiduciary’s process, or procedures, used in making such decisions. And though a written investment policy statement (IPS) … Continue reading Investment Policy Statement Review: Beyond the Obvious
A review of the holding in a recent Third Circuit Court of Appeals case provides a reminder of the importance of implementing and following a documented, prudent process to monitor plan investment options. In Santomeno v. John Hancock Life Insurance Co. (Case No. 13-3467 (3d Cir. Sept. 26, 2014)), the plaintiffs (plan participants, not plan fiduciaries) brought an ERISA class action suit against Hancock arguing … Continue reading Importance of Prudent Process to Monitor Investment Options
The beginning of the year has been a volatile one for the markets, sparking fear amongst investors and serving as a harbinger of possible things to come (for the rest of the year). In fact, the volatility we have seen in January is not only normal, but long overdue. The third quarter pull back of 2015 was a return to a more normal market volatility, … Continue reading A Turbulent Start to 2016