Transitioning to Retirement: How the Plan May Help

February 4th, 2020

For decades now the typical career has consisted of approximately 40 years spent working, an “on time” retirement at age 65, and perhaps a decade spent enjoying the so-called golden years. But with better health leading to longer life spans, retirement now may last much longer — and require much more money. Today, employers and employees alike recognize that four decades of saving for a retirement that may last four more decades is, to say the least, challenging.

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February Checklist For Plan Sponsors

January 31st, 2020


  • Update the plan’s ERISA fidelity bond coverage to reflect the plan’s assets as of December 31 (calendar-year plans). Remember that if the plan holds employer stock, bond coverage is higher than for nonstock
  • Issue a reminder memo or e-mail to all employees to encourage them to review and update, if necessary, their beneficiary designations for all benefit plans by which they are
  • Review and revise the roster of all plan fiduciaries and confirm each individual’s responsibilities and duties to the plan in writing. Ensure than each fiduciary understands his or her obligations to the plan.

    Consult your plan’s financial, legal, or tax advisor regarding these and other items that may apply to your plan.

Planning For Long-Term Care

January 22nd, 2020

Most people are not willing to accept the brutal truth that despite how much we may think of ourselves as superman or wonder woman, most of us will reach old age and will need help. You seldom hear of a healthy elderly person simply dropping dead; most elderly people will need some form of care as they navigate the final stages of their life.

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What Is A Bond?

January 16th, 2020

A bond is a security, generally issued for a period of more than 1 year, that is used to raise capital by borrowing from a lender. The U.S. and foreign governments, states, cities, corporations, and many other entities sell bonds.

Bonds generally pay a stated rate of interest over a specific period of time, and issuers promise to pay that interest along with a return of the investors’ principal when the bond matures.

Auto-Features Accomplished; What’s Up Next?

January 14th, 2020

Retirement income options may be coming soon.

You can almost hear the retirement plan consultants ticking the boxes on their to-do lists: auto-enrollments? Check. Auto-increases? Check. With widespread implementation of these features firmly entrenched, the next focus may be retirement income options in 401(k) plans. That’s one of the findings from recent queries of 238 consulting and advisory firms. Roughly two-thirds of the consultants who were asked about the future of plan design said they believe their plan Read the rest of this entry »

Are You Prepared For The Unexpected?

January 9th, 2020

Life has unexpected expenses: car or appliance repairs, for example. It may be helpful to create a rainy-day fund in a separate checking account for small financial shocks like these. Also create an emergency fund which should have enough to cover an unexpected job loss or serious family health issue.

Many financial experts recommend setting aside as much as 9 months of living expenses to keep you afloat during emergencies, but you can certainly start smaller, with a goal of socking away 2 months of salary.


Retirement Savings To Fund Emergencies

January 7th, 2020

Have you noticed a lot of loan activity among your employees suggesting they are using their retirement savings to fund emergencies? Lots of Americans are finding it difficult to fund even small emergencies from their bank accounts, as demonstrated by the proliferation of payday loans, early withdrawals and loans from 401(k) plans.

One way to help may be the sidecar IRA, an account to which employees can direct after-tax money through payroll deduction. Once the account is funded to the extent desired by the employee, the payroll deductions can then be directed toward pretax retirement savings.

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January Checklist

January 2nd, 2020

  • Send payroll and employee census data to the plan’s recordkeeper for plan-year-end compliance testing (calendar-year plans).
  • Audit fourth quarter payroll and plan deposit dates to ensure compliance with the S. Department of Labor’s rules regarding timely deposit of participant contributions and loan repayments.
  • Verify that employees who became eligible for the plan between October 1 and December 31 received and returned an enrollment Follow up for forms that were not returned.Consult your plan’s financial, legal, or tax advisor regarding these and other items that may apply to your plan.


Saver Or Spender?

December 20th, 2019

In most families there are two types of people – the savers and the spenders. Statistics suggest that many couples argue or even divorce over money issues, and this is predominately due to either not making enough money or spending too much money.

It is important to understand your attitude towards money; mostly it is formed during our childhood. If someone had parents that were constantly arguing about a lack of money, this often turns them into a dedicated saver as they don’t want to be in the same position as their parents. Conversely, a person who grew up in a family that didn’t talk about money, or where money posed no issues, often emerges as a spender because of the lack of financial guidance. Read the rest of this entry »

Are You Getting Good Value From Your Fund Investments?

December 17th, 2019

Each quarter, you should receive information in a statement from your plan administrator about the fees and expenses charged to your plan. This fee disclosure is designed to help you assess the value you receive by participating in your plan, and to help you compare your investment options on an apples- to-apples basis.

This “plan-level” and “investment-level” disclosure information is required to be posted on a publicly accessible website. Check with your plan administrator if you have questions.