Monitoring Plan Investments, its Not Your Only Fiduciary Duty

March 24, 2016

 

Excellent episode with Jason Roberts, ERISA Attorney and Founder of the Pension Resource Institute and the Retirement Law Group.  He shares tremendous insights and valuable perspective to help employers understand the full scope of their fiduciary responsiblities, other than monitoring plan investments.  Also, as you will see below, 90% of recent 401(k) lawsuits are coming from another often overlooked category.  

 

Click here to listen to our full conversation

  • If Jason had a nickel for every time he said “Prudent Process” is the most important thing to protect plan fiduciaries, he would be rich!  

  • Fiduciary Governance is important for employers so you are making good decision for the plan participants.  

  • It also provides protection for plan fiduciaries.  

  • ERISA does not require you to be perfect or even  have to arrive at an optimal outcome if you have a good process to support your decisions.  

  • Lawsuits have several stages to them, if can produce documentation to show a well thought out process that relies on third party experts, there is a chance a litigator will move on to another case rather than dig in.  

  • Recent case law has supported that a well structured prudent fiduciary process has helped plan sponsors get some claims dismissed even when the outcome of the decision was not optimal.  

  • Having a properly structured plan committee is the foundation of a strong fiduciary process.  

  • Reviewing and monitoring investments is important, but not the only responsibility of a 401(k) Committee.

  • “Selection and monitoring service providers” and “Administration and reporting” are two areas that do not get enough attention by plan fiduciaries.  

  • 90% of 401(k) lawsuits are stemming from the failure to select and/or monitor of service providers.