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COLLECTED WISDOM™ on Legislative Items Impacting Retirement Plans

A directory and index of articles that review what is happening in Congress and Washington DC.

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American Rescue Plan Act Contains Many Employee Benefits Related Provisions

On March 11, 2021, President Biden signed the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 into law. Many of the provisions in this sweeping legislation bring changes to the employee benefits world of which employers should take note of and which are summarized here.

Source: Benefitsnotes.com, April 2021

Expanding Coverage Likely Next Target for Lawmakers

With the multiemployer relief legislation cleared from Congress' docket, look for policymakers to turn to efforts to expand retirement plan coverage, ARA staff explained during a March 23 NAPA webcast. Will Hansen, Chief Government Affairs Officer at the American Retirement Association, and Andrew Remo, the organization's Director of Legislative Affairs, offered their take on the legislative outlook for the rest of the year, as well as what retirement policy provisions we may see in forthcoming legislation.

Source: Asppa.org, March 2021

Consolidated Appropriations Act: What Plan Sponsors Need to Know About Retirement Plan Relief

The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 is mostly known for the $900 billion it provided in additional stimulus funding for pandemic relief. But the law also contains several useful provisions for retirement plans, including non-COVID disaster emergency relief, multiemployer, and defined benefit plan changes, and updates to partial plan terminations. All of these provisions are discretionary and have very narrow applicability. Regardless, plan sponsors should take the time to understand the relevant parts of the law and see whether the various provisions might benefit their organizations and plan participants.

Source: Bdo.com, March 2021

DOL Nominee Says Cybersecurity, Retirement Savings High Priority

Julie Su, who was nominated to serve as Deputy Secretary of Labor, spent much of her nomination hearing defending her record as California's labor secretary, but she did field a couple of questions about retirement policy.

Source: Asppa.org, March 2021

Freeze on 401k Contribution COLAs Removed From Stimulus Bill

The American Retirement Association announced Thursday that, after a week of intense lobbying by the industry advocacy organization, the freeze on the annual cost-of-living adjustments (COLAs) for contributions to defined contribution plans contained in the stimulus bill supported by President Biden has been pulled.

Source: 401kspecialistmag.com, March 2021

ERISA Fiduciaries Under a Biden Labor Department: What Is on the Horizon?

President Biden has been in office for 34 days and his nominee for Secretary of Labor, Marty Walsh, has not yet been confirmed. Nonetheless, several issues in the ERISA fiduciary space have already garnered the new administration's attention and there are certain clues about how this Department of Labor may impact the regulation and enforcement of ERISA's fiduciary standards.

Source: Morganlewis.com, February 2021

COVID Relief Bill Puts Ceiling on DC Plan Limits

As part of the push to enact a nearly $2 trillion stimulus bill, the House Ways & Means Committee moved forward February 11th with a proposal to freeze retirement plan contribution limits to help offset the cost of multiemployer plan relief. On a party-line vote of 25-18, the committee approved the Butch Lewis Emergency Pension Plan Relief Act of 2021.

Source: Asppa.org, February 2021

SECURE Act 2.0: Key Provisions Affecting Retirement Plans

Late last year, House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard E. Neal and Ranking Member Kevin Brady introduced the Securing a Strong Retirement Act of 2020, a bipartisan legislative proposal that includes changes designed to encourage plan adoption, promote retirement savings, and fix certain plan administration problems. As retirement income issues gain an expanding focus, broker-dealers, RIAs, and their advisors need to understand changes that could impact their clients. This article comments on a number of the key provisions.

Source: Brokerdealerlawblog.com, February 2021

Multiemployer Plan Bailout Caps Benefit Plan Limits

Legislation before the House Ways & Means Committee plans to help pay for a multiemployer plan bailout by utilizing a budget gimmick that would freeze retirement plan contribution limits, though not for collectively bargained plans. More specifically, the Butch Lewis Emergency Pension Plan Relief Act of 2021, included as subtitle H of a nine-part package that the committee plans to mark up this week, would impose a cost-of-living freeze.

Source: Asppa.org, February 2021

Committee Chairmen Introduce Multiemployer Pension Plan Reform in House

Representative Neal, Chair of the House Ways and Means Committee, and Representative Scott, Chair of the House Education and Labor Committee, introduced nearly identical bills, the "Emergency Pension Plan Relief Act of 2021," into the committees they chair. This article covers the key multiemployer plan provisions of the bills, particularly from the standpoint of contributing employers.

Source: Octoberthree.com, February 2021

2021 Could See More Retirement and Health Legislation

There is optimism that one or more savings-focused bills could be enacted in 2021. Several introduced during the past two years will likely be re-introduced in the 117th Congress.

Source: Futureplan.com, January 2021

Rep. Neal Releases Policy Priorities for Equity in Retirement Security

House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal has laid out his party's vision for economic equity in health care and retirement. In a letter included in his Policies and Priorities report, Neal says one of their priorities is increasing retirement security for U.S. workers, which would be achieved by policies strengthening Social Security benefits, growing multiple employer plan participation, and mandating automatic enrollment for 401k plans.

Source: Plansponsor.com, January 2021

What Labor Nominee Walsh Means for the Fiduciary Rule's Future

President Biden named Boston Mayor Martin Walsh as his nominee for Secretary of Labor. Walsh's nomination raises questions for the future of the DOL's fiduciary rule, which regulates investment fiduciaries under ERISA. In particular, the new fiduciary rule guidelines promulgated by the DOL in December 2020 appear to be in jeopardy under a Biden administration with Walsh as Labor Secretary.

Source: 401kspecialistmag.com, January 2021

Retirement Plan Relief in Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021

The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 combines COVID-19 stimulus relief with several year-end appropriations bills, and it includes numerous provisions that will impact retirement plans. The retirement plan relief provisions in the CAA are divided between (1) qualified disaster relief (including actions Congress has historically taken to relax normal retirement plan distribution and withdrawal rules in light of a natural disaster) and (2) separate COVID-19 relief (including new rules for retirement plans in light of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic).

Source: Truckerhuss.com, January 2021

2021 Appropriations Bill Includes New and Expanded Relief for Employee Benefit Plans

The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 was passed and signed into law in late December 2020. In addition to funding for the current fiscal year, the Act also includes numerous provisions addressing employee benefit plans and providing a range of relief provisions relating to the COVID-19 pandemic and other disasters. While many of these changes are new, some of them extend or add on to previous legislation issued earlier in 2020 under the CARES Act. This article describes the key provisions of the Act applicable to employer-sponsored welfare and retirement plans.

Source: Huntonak.com, January 2021

Appropriations Act Includes Several Provisions Applicable to Qualified Retirement Plans

The Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 includes several provisions affecting qualified retirement plans. A relaxation of the partial plan termination rules should provide relief to plans which see unusual turnover in the number of active participants during the COVID-19 pandemic. Other provisions, including an amendment of the CARES Act which allows coronavirus related distributions to be made from money purchase pension plans, may provide retroactive relief to plan sponsors.

Source: Reinhartlaw.com, January 2021

Senate Tilt Portends Big Policy Shifts

The election of the two Georgia Senate Democratic candidates and the resulting shift in control of the U.S. Senate could have profound implications for President-elect Joe Biden's policy agenda, including retirement plans.

Source: Asppa.org, January 2021

Qualified Retirement Plan Relief in the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021

The Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 contains various relief provisions applicable to qualified retirement plans. This article summarizes provisions in the Act, including the temporary rule preventing partial plan terminations, coronavirus-related distributions, and qualified disaster distribution and loan relief provisions.

Source: Shermanhoward.com, January 2021

Year-End Stimulus Bill Effectively Extends Key Cares Act 401k Provisions

On December 27, 2020, President Trump signed the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021, which includes the much-heralded coronavirus stimulus package that has been the subject of intense negotiations in recent months. For 401k plans, the Stimulus Act's provisions in many ways replace or extend similar provisions that were contained in the CARES Act.

Source: Compliancedashboard.net, January 2021

Retirement Plan Provisions in the New COVID-19 Relief Acts

The recently enacted COVID-19 Related Tax Relief Act of 2020 and the Taxpayer Certainty and Disaster Tax Relief Act of 2020, both of which are part of the "Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021," includes the following provisions that expand and extend changes intended to provide relief to retirement plan sponsors and participants affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and other disasters.

Source: Bradley.com, January 2021

Partial Plan Termination Relief Provided in New Stimulus Bill

The latest COVID-19 relief bill, attached to the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021, enables certain retirement plan sponsors that laid off or furloughed employees due to the economic effects of the pandemic to avoid a partial plan termination.

Source: Plansponsor.com, December 2020

Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021: Employer-Sponsored Retirement Plans

The Act relaxes several normally rigid health, welfare, and retirement plan rules in light of the on-going COVID-19 pandemic, easing the financial impact of pandemic-caused employment changes while instituting new rules related to surprise medical billing. This article covers the Act's effects on employer-sponsored retirement plans.

Source: Jacksonlewis.com, December 2020

Congress Provides Retirement Plan Relief

Congress passed, and the President signed, the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021. This bill contains over seventy new tax policies, extensions, refinements, and other tax-law clarifications. Within its over 5000 pages is The Taxpayer Certainty and Disaster Tax Relief Act. The TCDT Act provides that the 10% early withdrawal penalty does not apply to qualified disaster distributions; that special rules apply to retirement plan distributions used for qualified disaster area home purchases; and for increases in the limit for retirement plan loans made because of a disaster.

Source: Graydon.law, December 2020

Bill to Expand MEPs to 403bs Introduced in Senate

A bipartisan trio of U.S. Senators has introduced legislation that would expand Multiple Employer Plan access to 403b plans, along with other MEP enhancements.

Source: Asppa.org, December 2020

COVID Relief Bill Includes Retirement Relief

There's some great news for plan sponsors in the COVID relief bill, a "temporary rule preventing partial plan termination." Once approved and signed into law, sponsors of defined contribution retirement plans can avoid the partial plan termination rules if the active participant count as of March 2021 is 80% of the active participant count at the time the national emergency was declared.

Source: Asppa.org, December 2020

Congress Looking to Change or Even Abolish Key 401k Provision

The SECURE Act, which was signed into law last December, included a provision that pushed up the age for mandatory retirement plan distributions from 70 to 72. Now, lawmakers are hoping to pass another retirement bill that's being informally called SECURE Act 2.0 by early next year. A provision in the bill would push distributions up even further, to age 75.

Source: Yahoo.com, December 2020

Legislation Would Mandate ESG Policies Among Retirement Plans, Advisors

Unhappy with the Department of Labor's regulatory efforts to curtail environmental, social and governance investing, a group of House Democrats introduced two bills requiring retirement plan fiduciaries and investment advisors to adopt sustainable investment policies.

Source: Napa-net.org, December 2020

SECURE Act 2.0 Would Solve Longstanding Pension Problems

Building on the framework of the SECURE Act, Representatives Richard Neal and Kevin Brady have introduced the Securing a Strong Retirement Act of 2020, already being referred to as SECURE Act 2.0. SECURE Act 2.0 contains changes that would further encourage plan adoption and retirement savings, as well as solutions to operational problems that have bedeviled plan sponsors for many years.

Source: Cohenbuckmann.com, December 2020

DOL Drops Off Final Proxy Voting Rule at OMB

It was a short week, but a busy one for the Labor Department, as it dropped off a second final rule at the OMB for evaluation. The final rule on "Fiduciary Duties Regarding Proxy Voting and Shareholder Rights" was received at the Office and Management Budget on Nov. 25, just a day after the final rule on its proposed advice package, "Improving Investment Advice for Workers & Retirees," had been delivered there.

Source: Napa-net.org, November 2020

ESG Investing in Retirement Accounts: Down But Not Out

Proponents of environmental, social, and governance investing may have good news on the horizon. In particular, good news that could resuscitate ESG investing in retirement accounts following the DOL's recent blow to the practice. Representative Andy Levin is reportedly in the process of drafting two bills that would require investment advisers to incorporate ESG investing in retirement savings accounts.

Source: Mintz.com, November 2020

Congress Mulls Expanding 401k Enrollments, Easing Retirement Fund Withdrawals

A proposed law to increase the age for mandatory retirement fund withdrawals and to boost 401k enrollment may be stuck for now in the lame duck Congress, amid legislative gridlock over new COVID-19 relief.

Source: Ai-cio.com, November 2020

SECURE 2.0 -- the Securing a Strong Retirement Act

On October 27, 2020, House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Neal and Ranking Member Brady released the Securing a Strong Retirement Act. The bill builds on changes made by the 2019 SECURE Act and may provide a template for further improvement of our current retirement savings system. This article reviews elements of the new proposal affecting private, single-employer retirement plans.

Source: Octoberthree.com, November 2020

What's Next? The Post-Election Future of Employee Benefits Policy (Retirement Policy Edition)

Retirement policy has experienced more bipartisanship than most areas of legislative activity and that is likely to continue. However, a Democratic White House, despite a Republican-controlled Senate, improves the prospects for consideration of many Democratic priorities. A Biden administration will also mean a shift in the regulatory agenda. This is a 16-page detailed summary of the probable impact of a Biden presidency on retirement policy.

Source: Americanbenefitscouncil.org, November 2020

What the DOL Could Look Like Under Biden

Joe Biden's presidential election win could have a big impact on the DOL and the coming months will determine how quickly the agency moves forward with new rule proposals. Reversing the investment advice rule "will be priority No. 1" for the DOL under a new administration, according to Jason Roberts, CEO of the Pension Resource Institute. "Get ready for a true fiduciary rule 3.0," he said. The new administration is also likely to revisit the advisory opinion on the use of private equity in DC plans, Mike Hadley, partner at David & Harmon.

Source: Investmentnews.com (registration may be required), November 2020

Tax Benefits for Retirement Distributions for LTC Insurance

Senator Patrick Toomey has introduced S. 4820, legislation that would permit tax-free retirement savings distributions of up to $2,500 per year -- indexed for inflation -- that are used to purchase long-term care insurance. The arrangements to which the legislation applies would include qualified retirement plans, 403(a) and 403b plans, governmental 457(b) plans, and IRAs.

Source: Futureplan.com, November 2020

Massive New Retirement Bill Would Expand, Mandate Auto-Enrollment

Section 101 of Securing a Strong Retirement Act of 2020 is titled, "Expanding automatic enrollment in retirement plans." We all know how important the increasingly popular concept of auto-enrolment has been for increasing 401k plan participation rates, so any effort to further boost its use is welcome news to retirement plan advisors. This article takes a closer look at this particular provision of the newly introduced bipartisan retirement reform bill.

Source: 401kspecialistmag.com, October 2020

SECURE Act 2.0 Introduced in House

House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard E. Neal and Ranking Member Kevin Brady introduced the Securing a Strong Retirement Act of 2020, bipartisan legislation to help a greater number of Americans successfully save for a secure retirement. The bill builds on the Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement (SECURE) Act of 2019.

Source: House.gov, October 2020

Bill Would Let 403bs Use PEPs

Nonprofits and colleges would able to join the SECURE Act's much-anticipated pooled employer plans under a bill introduced last week by Rep. Ron Kind. If the bill passes, it will be very big news for any business that is lining up to become a pooled plan provider. There is expected to be a flood of applications for that status, once the DOL finalizes its criteria for those plan providers.

Source: Investmentnews.com (registration may be required), October 2020

Biden Proposes 401k Change to Equalize Benefits

Biden's proposal is designed to equalize benefits across the income levels through a tax credit. Although the details are still somewhat hazy, Biden's camp says that low- and middle-income workers would get a comparable tax break to high-bracket earners.

Source: Cpapracticeadvisor.com, October 2020

Biden's 401k Plan Is Vague, but Worth Paying Attention To

Policymakers have had little luck in reforming the tax structure for 401k defined contribution plans for decades. Biden is going to try if he wins the upcoming presidential election, and that has important implications for retirement savers.

Source: Morningstar.com, October 2020

House Bankruptcy Bill Would Impact Retirement Plans

H.R. 7370, the Protecting Employees and Retirees in Business Bankruptcies Act of 2020, has been introduced by Rep. Jerrold Nadler. This bill would modify provisions related to Chapter 11 bankruptcy, including expanding claims and priorities for payment of benefits for employees and retirees, and protections related to reduction or denial of benefits.

Source: Futureplan.com, October 2020

Advisors Mixed on Biden's Plan to Replace 401k Deductions With Flat Tax Credit

The Biden proposal restructures the 401k contribution incentive by replacing the deduction with a tax credit, which is estimated to be 26%. Presumably, the tax credit would be refundable so that even workers with no tax liability would benefit from putting $1,000 into a 401k plan. As under current law with non-Roth plans, earnings would continue to accrue tax-free, and withdrawals at retirement would continue to be taxed as regular income. The proposal, which Biden has yet to flesh out, may have more negatives than positives, according to one advisor.

Source: Fa-mag.com, September 2020

Election 2020: Retirement Policy Positions

We are nearing the final stretch of the 2020 campaign. What have the parties proposed for the future of the U.S. retirement system? Here is a chart that summarizes the policy documents prepared by the parties outlining their goals for both the private retirement system and Social Security.

Source: Groom.com, September 2020

Examining Joe Biden's Retirement Savings Tax Credit Proposal

One of the provisions in Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden's platform would replace the tax deduction that workers get when they contribute to their workplace retirement plan with a tax credit. Experts steeped in the retirement planning industry wonder if the Democratic candidate's proposed incentives are enough to prompt lower-income workers to save sufficiently for retirement.

Source: Planadviser.com, August 2020

Biden Retirement Proposal Would Upend Traditional 401k Plans

A little-noticed feature of Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden's tax plan would flip the incentive structure of a retirement system grounded for nearly a century on the tax-deductibility of saving. Instead of pretax contributions, everyone would get a flat tax credit.

Source: Rollcall.com, August 2020

No "Earth-Shattering" Retirement Proposals in Biden Platform

Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden has issued his plan for helping American seniors retire more successfully, dubbed "The Biden Plan for Older Americans." The platform promises to reinforce Social Security and Medicare, though it lacks major economic policy reforms of the type preferred by more progressive Democrats.

Source: Plansponsor.com, August 2020

Pension, 401k Registry Bill Resurfaces

Workers are increasingly responsible for making sure they have enough money to retire. But moving from job to job is now the norm and pensions get left behind and 401ks fall by the wayside. People who try to find old plans often can't locate employers that have changed names, merged, relocated, or terminated a plan. A perennial proposal just reintroduced in Congress would do some good: establish an online database of employer retirement plans so workers and retirees can locate old pensions and 401k accounts.

Source: Bc.edu, July 2020

New COVID 401k Catch-Up Bill Introduced

A quartet of GOP senators have introduced new legislation that would allow individuals facing financial challenges who are unable to make contributions to their tax-advantaged retirement accounts in 2020 to make catch-up contributions to these accounts in the coming years.

Source: Napa-net.org, July 2020

"Lost and Found" 401k Bill Resurfaces

Sen. Elizabeth Warren is again pressing for a retirement account "lost and found" system that would help workers keep track of their savings in plans sponsored by former employers. Last week the Democratic senator from Massachusetts introduced the bill, the Bipartisan Retirement Savings Lost and Found Act of 2020, which is similar to legislation she and other members of Congress have co-sponsored in the past. The bill tasks the Treasury Department with building an online system to track accounts.

Source: Investmentnews.com (registration may be required), July 2020

The HEROES Act: Key Retirement, Health and Welfare, and Tax Provisions

The House of Representatives recently passed the fourth round of legislation in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The HEROES Act is unlikely to advance in the Senate, and the White House has threatened to veto the bill. However, the Act reflects the House Democratic majority's priorities, and some of the provisions could be included as part of a bipartisan compromise package. This alert first summarizes key provisions of the HEROES Act impacting retirement plans and health insurance. It then discusses other provisions that may impact employers and individuals.

Source: Groom.com, May 2020

Retirement Plans and the SECURE Act: What Employers Need to Know

The SECURE Act makes it easier for employers to offer a retirement benefit, improves plan design and operation, and affords participants more options and flexibility. While the SECURE Act contains over 30 provisions, employers should focus on specific provisions that affect group benefit plans or enhance current offerings. This article discusses the key provisions of the SECURE Act that are relevant to retirement plan sponsors.

Source: Francisinvco.com, May 2020

House-Passed Stimulus Bill Includes RMD Relief, PPP Clarity

Included among the retirement-based provisions are additional relief from required minimum distributions, clarifications to the retirement provisions enacted under the CARES Act, funding relief for single-employer pension plans, relief for troubled multiemployer pension plans and an assortment of other changes.

Source: Asppa.org, May 2020

Catch-up Contributions Being Weighed in Congress

A congressman is floating a proposal that would funnel more assets into tax-deferred retirement accounts by tripling the contribution limits for the rest of this year.

Source: Investmentnews.com (registration may be required), April 2020

New Bill Would Triple Retirement Plan Contribution Limits for 2020

Rep. Patrick McHenry has introduced the Securing Additional Value for Every Retirement Saver (SAVERS) Act, legislation that would permit increased annual contributions to tax-qualified retirement savings arrangements for 2020. The legislation would raise the annual contribution limitations to 300 percent of previously announced limits for 2020 (not to exceed applicable compensation).

Source: Ascensus.com, April 2020

CARES Act Adoption Defaults

Some recordkeepers/TPAs are already reaching out to plan sponsors on decisions regarding the optional provisions of the CARES Act, notably COVID-19 related distribution and loan options, but while some are waiting for instructions, others have made some assumptions. While this is certainly a moving target, and subject to change, NAPA compiled option information into an online table for your reference.

Source: Napa-net.org, April 2020


The CARES Act includes several key provisions that will positively impact retirement plan participants and plan sponsors. The ARA has prepared this FAQs to highlight some of the most salient relief measures.

Source: Asppa-net.org, April 2020

CARES Act: Retirement Plan Provisions for Employers and Plan Administrators

This legislation contains several important provisions for employers and plan administrators regarding their retirement plans. The article discusses special withdrawal, loan, and required minimum distribution provisions in the CARES Act.

Source: Pbwt.com, March 2020

The CARES Act and Its Impact on Retirement Plans

The CARES Act is a very extensive piece of legislation that is meant to provide emergency assistance to large and small distressed businesses, to stabilize the U.S. economy that has been hammered by this pandemic. This bill covers a lot more of the highly publicized economy provisions. This article specifically focuses on the provisions that directly impact tax-qualified retirement plans.

Source: Findley.com, March 2020

CARES Act: Employee Benefits Implications

Congress has passed the CARES Act to help combat the impacts of COVID-19. This article is intended as a high-level overview of the employee benefit provisions of the Act. There are ambiguities and clarification on some of the details is still needed.

Source: Clarkhill.com, March 2020

CARES Act Relief Bill: Retirement Plan Provisions and Economic Impact

The legislation contains several retirement plan-related provisions that should prove helpful to plan sponsors in their attempt to deal with the implications of the pandemic. They are highlighted here. Plan sponsors should work closely with their trusted advisers and recordkeepers to discuss efficient implementation of the relevant CARES Act provisions.

Source: Cammackretirement.com, March 2020

Highlights of Employee Benefits Provisions in the CARES Act

The President signed into law the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act or "CARES Act." The CARES Act is primarily a stimulus package that addresses the current coronavirus crisis, but it includes several provisions relating to employee benefit plans. This article reviews those employee benefits provisions.

Source: Bradley.com, March 2020

Trump Signs Coronavirus Stimulus Legislation With Retirement Relief Into Law

President Trump signed into law the sweeping $2 trillion stimulus bill that includes retirement relief provisions. the retirement-based provisions stick closely to what was initially proposed by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, including provisions to ease retirement plan hardship and loan rules to free up funds for individuals impacted by the pandemic and to provide relief from the required minimum distribution rules.

Source: Bradley.com, March 2020

Trump Signs Coronavirus Stimulus Legislation With Retirement Relief Into Law

President Trump signed into law the sweeping $2 trillion stimulus bill that includes retirement relief provisions. the retirement-based provisions stick closely to what was initially proposed by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, including provisions to ease retirement plan hardship and loan rules to free up funds for individuals impacted by the pandemic and to provide relief from the required minimum distribution rules.

Source: Asppa.org, March 2020

Senate Approves Coronavirus Stimulus With Retirement Relief

The Senate unanimously approved a sweeping $2 trillion stimulus bill, including retirement relief provisions. As for those retirement-based provisions, the final bill sticks closely to what was initially proposed by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, including provisions to ease retirement plan hardship and loan rules to free up funds for individuals impacted by the pandemic and to provide relief from the required minimum distribution rules.

Source: Napa-net.org, March 2020

401k Withdrawal Provisions Contained in Coronavirus Bill

In a section titled "Tax-Favored Withdrawals from Retirement Plans" the Coronavirus, Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act establishes special rules for certain tax-favored withdrawals from retirement plans. More specifically, it spells out when and how the 10% early withdrawal penalty can be avoided under Section 72(t) of the Internal Revenue Code.

Source: 401kspecialistmag.com, March 2020

Senate Bill Expands Retirement Plan Access for Coronavirus Impact

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, on behalf of the Senate Republican caucus, introduced the Coronavirus, Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, which includes key provisions advocated by the American Retirement Association affecting hardship distributions and plan loans.

Source: Napa-net.org, March 2020

Legislation Would Allow 403bs to Invest in CITs

The bill introduced to Congress is designed to ensure public sector and nonprofit retirement plans have the same access to low-cost investments as for-profit retirement plans do.

Source: Planadviser.com, March 2020

After the SECURE Act: Proposed Retirement Plan Legislation for 2020

Paying attention to the long-term needs and goals of constituents is always a top priority for legislators, so there are several further pieces of litigation currently on the table to continue to modify and improve the laws and regulations concerning retirement savings.

Source: Hallbenefitslaw.com, March 2020

2020 Legislative and Regulatory Outlook for Retirement Plans

Retirement plan sponsors have much to consider in the wake of reforms enacted last December by the SECURE Act. Also, bipartisan congressional interest in passing a new round of "next-generation" retirement reforms remains high, although the challenges of a divided government, limited legislative vehicles, and a short election-year legislative calendar make the outlook uncertain. This article examines legislative and regulatory trends so plan sponsors can anticipate the changes.

Source: Mercer.com, February 2020

Annuities Group Wants 401ks for All

An annuities industry lobbying group will be pushing Congress to make it all but mandatory for employers to automatically enroll their workers in retirement plans.

Source: Investmentnews.com (registration may be required), February 2020

SECURE Act Requires Immediate Action by Plan Service Providers

Many of the provisions in the SECURE Act are effective on January 1, 2020 and will require significant changes to plan administration and recordkeeping. There are also a number of provisions in the Act that could impact retirement plan and product development. This article discusses the ten most pressing implementation issues.

Source: Groom.com, January 2020

Details of the SECURE Act: Rules Related to Safe Harbor Plans

Section 103 of the SECURE Act amends the Internal Revenue Code regarding the deadline for an employer to elect safe harbor status and eliminates the requirement for a safe harbor nonelective notice. Under the Act, employers will be given additional flexibility on the timing for electing a safe harbor nonelective contribution.

Source: Consultrms.com, January 2020

The SECURE Act Facts: What You Need to Know Now

Significant retirement plan legislation, known as the SECURE Act, was signed into law by President Trump on December 20, 2019. Here are some SECURE Act facts about which retirement plan sponsors and participants should be aware.

Source: Cammackretirement.com, January 2020

SECURE Act: Effective Dates of Key Provisions

Changes to current rules applicable to retirement plans made by the SECURE Act are (in most cases) already effective. This article reviews the effective dates of some of the key provisions of SECURE and sponsor issues they present.

Source: Octoberthree.com, January 2020

Retirement Industry Looks for Encore to SECURE Act

Even with the passage of the first retirement security package in more than a decade shortly before the holiday recess, there is more retirement-related legislation that could get a look in 2020. In the House, Rep. Richard Neal, chairman of the Ways and Means Committee, has indicated that work on retirement security bills does not end with the SECURE Act.

Source: Pionline.com, January 2020

Implications for 401k Plans in the SECURE Act

As part of the 2020 appropriations act, Congress passed the SECURE Act, which was signed into law by the President on December 20, 2019. The SECURE Act has a number of implications for 401k plans which are summarized here.

Source: Jdsupra.com, January 2020

The Biggest Downside to America's Sweeping New Retirement Law

In the past, if you received an IRA or a 401k as a beneficiary, you could take it out over your life expectancy. What that means is you're taking small pieces out over your life, also getting the tax deferral. So, your money is being able to grow tax deferred within that plan, and then ultimately, you're setting yourself up for a nice little retirement plan in the future. Under the SECURE Act, beneficiaries have to take that out within 10 years.

Source: Yahoo.com, January 2020

An Overview of Employee Benefit Provisions in the Newly Enacted SECURE Act

The SECURE Act contains many provisions that apply to employer-sponsored retirement plans in 2020. Although plan amendments do not have to be made for a few years, plan administration (including notification to employees and participants and revised election forms) will need to change much sooner. This article provides a summary of the major provisions affecting employee benefits.

Source: Hklaw.com, January 2020

SECURE Act Generates Changes and Opportunities for Retirement Plans

The SECURE Act makes numerous changes (including a variety of enhancements) affecting qualified retirement plans, 403b and 457b plans, individual retirement accounts, and other employee benefits. Employers should understand these changes to prepare themselves for the resulting effect on retirement plan administration and financial planning. This article provides an overview of the most relevant provisions and their effective dates.

Source: Spencerfane.com, January 2020

Details of the SECURE Act: Covering Long-Term Part-Time Workers

Under prior law, an employee who never worked 1,000 hours or more in a 12-month eligibility computation period could be excluded from an employer sponsored 401k plan for all purposes. Under the new SECURE Act requirement, an employee must be allowed to make elective contributions to the 401k portion of a plan after he meets the EARLIER of (a) the plan’s normal eligibility requirements OR (b) the close of the first period of 3 consecutive 12-month periods during each of which the employee has completed at least 500 hours of service.

Source: Consultrms.com, January 2020

Highlights of Some of the Top New SECURE Act Provisions Affecting 401k Plans -- Part One

Passed by Congress and signed into law at the midnight hour as part of the 2019 comprehensive budget appropriation package, the SECURE Act is now the law of the land. This article, which is part one of a series of two, zeros in on a few of the main SECURE Act 401k plan provisions and provide some detail.

Source: Compliancedashboard.net, January 2020

Year-End Tax Act Ushers in Retirement Plan Changes and More

The SECURE Act implements a number of mandatory and optional changes for employer-sponsored benefit plans. Many of these changes become effective currently or in the next year, and some even have a retroactive effect that would require retirement plan sponsors' immediate attention. This article provides details on what employers and plan sponsors need to know.

Source: Nixonpeabody.com, January 2020

A Short Guide to the SECURE Act for Retirement Plan Sponsors and Administrators

The SECURE Act, included as part of the Further Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2020, was signed into law on December 20, 2019. This new law contains many significant changes that may impact employer-sponsored benefit plans. Here is a chronological guide to the key retirement plan issues raised by the new law.

Source: Natlawreview.com, January 2020

SECURE Act's Impact on Large Employer Retirement Plans

The SECURE Act, signed into law on Dec. 20, 2019, contains various provisions that may impact large employer-sponsored retirement plans. In effect, the act will usher in the need for plan sponsors to reevaluate plan features, and some of the act's provisions will require plan sponsors to amend their plans and administrative processes. This article summarizes the changes that could apply to large employer-sponsored 401k and other retirement plans.

Source: Jdsupra.com, January 2020

President Trump Signs SECURE Act Into Law

The SECURE Act is probably the most significant single piece of employer retirement plan legislation since the Pension Protection Act of 2006. As a result, it is important for plan sponsors to be aware of the different provisions of the SECURE Act, some of which became effective on January 1, 2020. This article addresses the SECURE Act provisions that are participant-facing, and then the provisions which affect plan administration, but do not necessarily impact participants directly.

Source: Seyfarth.com, January 2020

Sweeping Changes to Retirement Plan Rules Passed Under the SECURE Act -- Provisions Requiring Immediate Attention

The SECURE Act makes broad and sweeping changes to the retirement plan landscape and contains numerous new requirements and new optional planning and design opportunities. This 3-page alert focuses on certain changes in the new law that are required to be operationally implemented by employers who sponsor and maintain qualified retirement plans and 403b plans either immediately or shortly after the passage of the SECURE Act.

Source: Pbwt.com, January 2020

Summary of the SECURE Act

The Act will affect employers, other plan sponsors, and plan service providers. Some of the provisions have a January 1, 2020 effective date. This is a 2-page summary of the major items in the Act that effect retirement plans.

Source: Cowdenassociates.com, January 2020

Legislation Includes the SECURE Act, Which Changes Retirement Plan Requirements

On December 20, 2019, President Trump signed appropriations legislation that included the Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement (SECURE) Act. This 4-page outline reviews the new legislation and highlights of the more relevant items for plan sponsors.

Source: Axiaadvisory.com, January 2020

What Plan Sponsors Need to Know About the SECURE Act

The SECURE Act, which changes many retirement plan provisions, was just signed into law with many changes effective in 2020. This article is about what you need to know about the SECURE Act and its affect on your retirement plan.

Source: Jdsupra.com, December 2019

How Will the SECURE Act Affect a 401k Plan Sponsor

The SECURE Act and spending bill provisions recently signed into law by President Trump contain a cornucopia of significant changes, but some of the most important affect 401k plans. While plan amendments will not be required until 2022 at the earliest, plan sponsors may take advantage of some of the changes in 2020. Here is a summary of new rules that current and potential 401k plan sponsors need to know.

Source: Cohenbuckmann.com, December 2019

SECURE Retirement Legislation Becomes Law: Overview of Provisions Affecting Retirement Plans

The SECURE Act -- the most impactful retirement plan legislation since the Pension Protection Act of 2006 -- was included in the bipartisan spending bill signed by US President Donald Trump on December 20, 2019. The SECURE Act will advance the goals of increasing access to defined contribution plans, promoting lifetime income options, and facilitating retirement plan design and administration. This article focuses on the Act's impact on retirement plans.

Source: Morganlewis.com, December 2019

72 Is the New 70 1/2 for RMDs, but What If You Turned 70 1/2 This Year?

What if a participant attained age 70 1/2 during 2019? Does the passage of the SECURE Act mean these participants can delay distributions? Unfortunately, the answer is no. The SECURE Act only changes the age for participants who attain age 70 1/2 after December 31, 2019. Therefore, IRA owners, 5% or more owner-participants, and retired participants who attained 70 1/2 at any point during 2019 will still need to take their required minimum distributions by April 1, 2020.

Source: Graydon.law, December 2019

Enhanced Retirement Provisions: The SECURE Act Signed Into Law

Just in time for the holidays, Congress gave plan sponsors and employee benefits attorneys a reason to celebrate this holiday season. On December 19, 2019, the U.S. Congress passed a spending bill, which was signed by President Trump, which contains several new provisions affecting pensions and benefits. One of the new laws that was adopted in the flurry of new rules in the year-end federal spending bill was the SECURE Act, a measure designed to ease compliance burdens on retirement plans and increase opportunities for employees to save for retirement. In fact, the SECURE Act is the most comprehensive pension reform since 2006.

Source: Cohenbuckmann.com, December 2019

The Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement (SECURE) Act

The SECURE Act -- just signed into law late last week-- includes probably the most comprehensive revisions to the law governing employer-sponsored retirement plans since the Pension Protection Act of 2006. Many of the provisions will not be effective until after 2020, but some provisions go into effect immediately. Here's a highlight of the more significant new rules, based on the date the provisions go live

Source: Beneficiallyyours.com, December 2019

A Retroactive Deduction for Adopting a 401k Plan

Let us say you are a plan advisor with experience advising on cash balance, age-weighted profit-sharing, or similarly designed retirement plans, and your client's accountant calls in April with a problem. Your shared client (with just a 401k plan) had a banner year and they are getting clobbered with a giant tax bill. She asks you: "Is there anything you can do to help?" Here is the Post-SECURE Act Solution.

Source: Asppa.org, December 2019

SECURE Act Summary

The SECURE Act represents the most significant retirement plan legislation in more than a decade. This legislation benefits both employers and employees by providing administrative relief along with expanded retirement plan coverage and increased savings opportunities to improve retirement security. This ia a two-page summary.

Source: Pentegra.com, December 2019

SECURE Act Makes Significant and Immediate Pension Law Changes

The most far-reaching pension reform legislation in 13 years was passed by Congress as part of the budget bill funding the federal government for the remainder of the fiscal year. The Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement Act of 2019 was added as Division O to the Further Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2020. Of critical importance to plan sponsors: The effective dates in the original bill were left unchanged. As a result, many of the new law's provisions will become effective on January 1, 2020.

Source: Truckerhuss.com, December 2019

Highlights of the Newly Enacted SECURE Act

The Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement Act is designed to expand and preserve retirement saving options for more Americans. While the Act introduces nearly 30 new amendments to the Internal Revenue Code, this article highlights 12 changes that could be the most impactful.

Source: Manning-Napier.com, December 2019

SECURE Act: The Wait Is Finally Over

The SECURE Act provides the most comprehensive retirement reform package in over a decade. The primary goals of the SECURE Act are to expand retirement savings, improve plan administration, simplify existing rules, and preserve retirement income. The provisions summarized here will certainly give rise to questions in the coming days.

Source: Ascensus.com, December 2019

Congress Has Passed the SECURE Act

The retirement plan industry is hailing Congress for passage of the Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Security Act, better known as the SECURE Act, which is expected to be signed by the President as soon as Friday. Through a laundry list of popular bipartisan provisions, the SECURE Act seeks to expand and modernize the DC retirement plan system. Through the establishment of "open multiple employer plans," or "open MEPs," the SECURE Act is expected to expand access to workplace retirement plans for millions more full- and part-time workers, particularly small business employees.

Source: Planadviser.com, December 2019

Effective Dates Listing for the SECURE Act Provisions

The SECURE Act will make substantial and highly technical changes to some very specific elements of retirement plan laws. This is a list -- in chronological order -- of the effective dates for these changes to help in prioritizing what to pay attention to first.

Source: Businessofbenefits.com, December 2019

SECURE Act Clears House, Heads to Senate

The House of Representatives on Dec. 17 approved the "minibus" government funding bill that contains the bipartisan Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement (SECURE) Act, moving the bill one step closer to enactment. The bill passed by a 297-120 margin.

Source: Ntsa-net.org, December 2019

Hope for SECURE in Year-End Funding Package

The most significant piece of retirement legislation in a decade could become a reality, after all. Hill staff worked throughout the weekend to put the finishing touches on the nearly $1.4 trillion spending bill for FY 2020, which will likely be the last "legislative vehicle" for 2019 and things look promising for the Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement (SECURE) Act to be attached to that spending bill.

Source: Asppa.org, December 2019

Where Does the SECURE Act Stand?

At first sight, it appeared that the Setting Every Community Up For Retirement Enhancement Act, known as the SECURE Act, was primed for immediate passage after flying through the House with a 417-3 vote. But progress slowed when the measure reached the Senate. The SECURE Act suffered some backlash from the negative media coverage and appears entangled in D.C. politics.

Source: Investmentnews.com (registration may be required), December 2019

Bill Would Allow Tax- and Penalty-Free Retirement Savings Withdrawals for Student Loan Payments

Sen. Rand Paul has introduced legislation that would permit tax-free, penalty-free withdrawals from IRAs and employer-sponsored retirement plans for qualified education expenses or student loan repayment.

Source: Ascensus.com, December 2019

Bill Would Allow Tax-Free 401k Withdrawals to Buy Long-term Care Insurance

A bill currently being discussed in Congress would allow retirement savers to tap assets held in 401k plans and individual retirement accounts tax-free to buy long-term care insurance, with the aim of making the insurance more affordable and potentially driving down premiums for customers.

Source: Investmentnews.com (registration may be required), November 2019

Legislation Would Allow 401k Withdrawals to Pay LTC Premiums

An influential U.S. Senator is preparing legislation that would allow tax- and penalty-free withdrawals to pay for long-term care insurance. The draft legislation that will be introduce in the coming weeks would also allow up to $2,000 in withdrawals annually per individual to be excluded from income tax, provided the amount is used to pay for qualified LTC insurance for the individual, their spouse or a dependent.

Source: Napa-net.org, November 2019

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