Retirement: Defined Contribution/401(k) Plan Reform


Legislative — proposals, bills and analysis from the 112th and 113th Congresses (2011-present)
Regulatory — administrative rules and information from U.S. offices and agencies
Judicial — current and past court cases and amicus briefs
Archive — All materials dated prior to 2011
Press Releases — Council statements and advisories to the news media
See Also — for related information



(Items in italic are available only to Council members.)

Official Source Documents

January 30, 2015 — Shrinking Emergency Account Losses (SEAL) Act (S. 324)

January 17, 2015 — Retirement Security Act of 2015 (S. 266) (Collins-Nelson)

April 22, 2014 — GAO Report: Private Pensions: Pensions Tax Incentives Update

March 12, 2014 — S. 2117 Smart Savings Act

March 11, 2014 — Smart Savings Act (H.R. 4193)

January 30, 2014 — USA Retirement Funds Act (S. 1979)

January 29, 2014 — Retirement Security Act (S. 1970)(Collins-Nelson)

July 9, 2013 — Secure Annuities for Employee (SAFE) Retirement Act of 2013 (S. 1270)(Hatch)

July 9, 2013 — Official Summary of the Secure Annuities for Employee (SAFE) Retirement Act of 2013 (S. 1270)(Hatch)

June 12, 2013 — Lifetime Income Disclosure Act (S. 1145)

May 23, 2013 — Lifetime Income Disclosure Act (H.R. 2171)

May 22, 2013 — Retirement Plan Simplification and Enhancement Act (Neal)

May 22, 2013 — Official Summary of the Retirement Plan Simplification and Enhancement Act (Neal)

May 14, 2013 — Student Loan Affordability Act (S. 953), including Stretch IRA Provision

March 19, 2013 — Shrinking Emergency Account Losses Act (SEAL) Act (S. 606)

March 4, 2013 — Senate Sense of the Congress Resolution Supporting Retirement Plan Tax Incentives

March 4, 2013 — Dear Colleague Letter Soliciting Cosponsorship of Sense of the Senate Resolution Supporting Retirement Plan Tax Incentives

February 26, 2013 — Savings for American Families' Future Act (H.R. 837)(Neal)

January 1, 2013 — American Taxpayer Relief Act (H.R. 8)

January 1, 2013 — Official Summary of the American Taxpayer Relief Act (H.R. 8)

April 24, 2012 — GAO Report: 401(K) PLANS: Increased Educational Outreach and Broader Oversight May Help Reduce Plan Fees

April 17, 2012 — Joint Committee on Taxation Report: Present Law and Background Relating to the Tax Treatment of Retirement Savings

March 22, 2012 — GAO Report: Defined Contribution Plans: Approaches in Other Countries Offer Beneficial Strategies in Several Areas

February 24, 2011 — GAO Report: Key Information on Target Date Funds as Default Investments Should Be Provided

February 16, 2012 — Retirement Plan Simplification and Enhancement Act (H.R. 4050) (Neal)

February 17, 2012 — House Resolution 101 Supporting Tax Incentives for Retirement Plans (Neal/Gerlach)

February 7, 2012 — Joint Tax Committee Description of the Senate Finance Committee Chairman’s Modification to the Proposals of the Highway Investment, Job Creation and Economic Growth Act

December 13, 2011 — Retirement Savings Security Act (H.R. 3656)

November 1, 2011 — Savings Enhancement by Alleviating Leakage in 401(k) Savings (SEAL) Act (H.R. 3287)(Johnson/Neal)

May 26, 2011 — Savings Enhancement by Alleviating Leakage in 401(k) Savings (SEAL) Act (S. 1121)(Kohl/Enzi)

March 16, 2011 — GAO Report, 401(k) Plans: Certain Investment Options and Practices That May Restrict Withdrawals Not Widely Understood

February 2, 2011 — Lifetime Income Disclosure Act (Bingaman/Isakson/Kohl)

February 2, 2011 — Official Summary of Lifetime Income Disclosure Act (Bingaman/Isakson/Kohl)

Council Materials

March 30, 2015 — Council Letter of Support for the Shrinking Emergency Account Losses Act (SEAL) Act (S. 324)

January 30, 2015 — Summary of Retirement Security Act (S. 266/H.R. 557) (Prepared by Kent Mason, Davis & Harman LLP)

January 28, 2014 — Council Letter of Support for Buchanan-Kind Retirement Security Legislation (H.R. 557)

January 21, 2014 — Council Letter of Support for Nelson-Collins Retirement Security Legislation (S. 266)

December 11, 2014 — Summary of Leading Proposals to Expand Retirement Coverage (Prepared by Davis & Harman, LLP)

September 16, 2014 — Council Submission on the Senate Finance Committee Hearing "Retirement Savings 2.0: Updating Savings Policy for the Modern Economy"

March 27, 2014 — Capitol Hill Briefing Presentations: Tax Incentives for Retirement Plans

January 29, 2014 — Council Letter of Support for Retirement Security Act (Collins-Nelson)

July 8, 2013 — Council Letter of Support for the Secure Annuities for Employee (SAFE) Retirement Act of 2013 (S. 1270)

April 15, 2013 — Council Statement to the Pension/Retirement Tax Reform Working Group of the House Ways and Means Committee

April 11, 2013 — 401(k) Fast Facts

April 3, 2013 — Letter of Support for the Shrinking Emergency Account Losses Act (SEAL) Act (S. 606)

March 18, 2013 — Group Letter of Support for Senate Sense of the Congress Resolution Supporting Retirement Plan Tax Incentives

January 2, 2013 — BENEFITS BLUEPRINT: A New Roth Conversion Opportunity (Prepared by Kent Mason, Davis & Harman LLP)

December 30, 2012 — Important Issues to Consider Regarding Taxation of Retirement Contributions and Benefits

December 6, 2012 — Benefits Briefing Presentation Slides: Defined Contribution Plan Issues - the Fiscal Cliff and Beyond (Kent Mason, Davis & Harman)

December 3, 2012 — Council Talking Points: Proposed Double Taxation of Retirement Plan Benefits Would Jeopardize Retirement Security

November 6, 2012 — Council Talking Points: 20/20 Cap on Retirement Savings Would Undermine Retirement Security

October 8, 2012 — Defined Contribution Plans & IRAs: Existing Tax Incentives Effectively and Efficiently Increase Retirement Savings

September 4, 2012 — Group Letter to House of Representatives Urging Cosponsorship of H.R. 3287

April 17, 2012 — Group Paper Urging House Ways and Means Committee to Preserve Employer-Provided Retirement System

April 17, 2012 — Randy Hardock Testimony on Behalf of Council Regarding Tax Treatment of Retirement Plans Before the House Ways and Means Committee

February 8, 2012 — Council Summary of the Proposed Changes to the After-Death Minimum Required Distribution Rules in the Highway Investment, Job Creation and Economic Growth Act (Prepared by Davis & Harman LLP)

January 30, 2012 — Background on The Retirement Savings Security Act (H.R. 3656): Why 401(k) Plan Loans Do Not Need Credit Insurance

November 14, 2011 — Council Letter of Support for the SEAL Act (H.R. 3287)

September 15, 2011 — Council/ACLI Submission for the Senate Finance Committee Hearing on Tax Reform Options: Promoting Retirement Security

February 3, 2011 — Council Summary of Senate HELP Committee Hearing on Retirement Savings

Official Source Documents

March 19, 2015 — DOL/EBSA Direct Final Regulations on Fiduciary Requirements for Disclosure in Participant-Directed Individual Account Plans — Timing of Annual Disclosure

March 19, 2015 — DOL/EBSA Proposed Regulations on Fiduciary Requirements for Disclosure in Participant-Directed Individual Account Plans — Timing of Annual Disclosure

December 22, 2014 — GAO Report: 401(k) Plans: Greater Protections Needed for Forced Transfers and Inactive Accounts

December 5, 2014 — DOL ICR on Effectiveness of 408(b)(2) Fee Disclosure Requirements

November 24, 2014 — PBGC Final Regulations on Title IV Treatment of Rollovers from Defined Contribution Plans to Defined Benefit Plans

October 24, 2014 — IRS Notice 2014-66: Lifetime Income Provided Through Target Date Funds in Section 401(k) Plans and Other Qualified Defined Contribution Plans

October 23, 2014 — EBSA Letter to Treasury Regarding Target Date Funds as QDIAs

August 21, 2014 — DOL RFI on Use of Brokerage Windows in 401(k) Plans

August 14, 2014 — DOL Guidance on Finding Lost Participants in Terminated DC Plans

July 29, 2014 — GAO Report: 401(k) Plans: Improvements Can Be Made to Better Protect Participants in Managed Accounts

July 28, 2014 — SEC (Re-)Proposed Regulations on Removal of Certain References to Credit Ratings and Amendment to the Issuer Diversification Requirement in the Money Market Fund Rule

July 28, 2014 — IRS Proposed Method of Accounting for Gains and Losses on Shares in Certain Money Market Funds; Broker Returns with Respect to Sales of Shares in Money Market Funds

July 24, 2014 — SEC Final Regulations on Money Market Fund Reform; Amendments to Form PF

July 23, 2014 — IRS Revenue Procedure 2014-45: SEC Rules on Money Market Fund Pricing

July 23, 2014 — SEC Notice of Proposed Exemptive Order: Notice Of Proposed Exemptive Order Granting Permanent Exemptions Under The Securities Exchange Act of 1934 from the Confirmation Requirements of Exchange Act Rule 10b-10 for Certain Money Market Funds

July 15, 2014 — IRS Information Collection Request Regarding Safe Harbor 401(k) Contributions

June 3, 2014 — DOL/EBSA Proposed Regulations and Reopening of Comment Period on Target Date Fund Disclosure

April 9, 2014 — SEC Proposed Regulations and Request for Comment on Investment Company Advertising: Target Date Retirement Fund Names and Marketing

April 2, 2014 — PBGC Proposed Regulations on Title IV Treatment of Rollovers from Defined Contribution Plans to Defined Benefit Plans

March 25, 2014 — IRS Announcement 2014-16: Issuance of Opinion and Advisory Letters for Pre-approved Defined Contribution Plans for the Second Six-Year Cycle, Deadline for Employer Adoption, and Opening of Determination Letter Program for Pre-approved Plan Adopters

March 25, 2014 — IRS Revenue Procedure 2014-28: Opinion & Advisory Letters for Pre-Approved 403(b) Plans

March 12, 2014 — EBSA Proposed Regulations on Fee Disclosure/Reasonable Contract or Arrangement Under Section 408(b)(2) (Guide for Fiduciaries)

March 12, 2014 — EBSA Fact Sheet on Proposed Regulations on Fee Disclosure/Reasonable Contract or Arrangement Under Section 408(b)(2) (Guide for Fiduciaries)

March 12, 2014 — EBSA Information Collection Request Regarding Effectiveness of Section 408(b)(2) Regulations

December 31, 2013 — FINRA Regulatory Notice 2013-45: Rollovers to Individual Retirement Accounts

November 14, 2013 — Final Regulations on Reduction or Suspension of 401(k)/401(m) Safe Harbor Contributions

July 22, 2013 — DOL Field Assistance Bulletin 2013-02: Required Annual Fee Disclosure

June 21, 2013 — PBGC Request for Information on Missing Participants in Individual Account Plans

June 5, 2013 — SEC Proposed Regulations on Money Market Fund Reform

June 5, 2013 — SEC Fact Sheet on Money Market Fund Reform Issues

May 7, 2013 — EBSA Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on Pension Benefit Statements

April 11, 2013 — SEC Investor Advisory Committee Investor-as-Purchaser Subcommittee Recommendations on Target Date Funds

April 3, 2013 — GAO Report: 401(K) PLANS: Labor and IRS Could Improve the Rollover Process for Participants

March 28, 2013 — IRS Revenue Procedure 2013-22: Opinion and Advisory Letter Procedures for Pre-Approved 403(b) plans

February 28, 2013 — DOL/EBSA Tips for Plan Fiduciaries: Target Date Retirement Funds

July 30, 2012 — REVISED DOL Field Assistance Bulletin 2012-02: Questions and Answers on Participant-Level Fee Disclosure Regulations (Including Q&A No. 30 Modification)

July 24, 2012 — Letter from Senator John Kerry to DOL Secretary Hilda Solis Regarding FAB 2012-02 Q&A No. 30

May 24, 2012 — DOL/EBSA Proposed Regulations and Re-opening of Comment Period on Target Date Disclosure

May 7, 2012 — DOL Field Assistance Bulletin 2012-02: Questions and Answers on Participant-Level Fee Disclosure Regulations

April 4, 2012 — SEC Proposed Rule on Target Date Retirement Fund Names and Marketing

February 15, 2012 — Siegel+Gale/SEC Study: Investor Testing of Target Date Retirement Fund(TDF) Comprehension and Communications

February 2, 2012 — DOL/EBSA Final Regulations on Defined Contribution Plan Fiduciary-Service Provider (408(b)(2)) Fee Disclosure

February 2, 2012 — DOL/EBSA Fact Sheet on Final Regulations on Defined Contribution Plan Fiduciary-Service Provider (408(b)(2)) Fee Disclosure

February 2, 2012 — DOL/EBSA List of Changes in Final Regulations on Defined Contribution Plan Fiduciary-Service Provider (408(b)(2)) Fee Disclosure

November 8, 2011 — IRS Advance Notice of Proposed Rule Regarding Determination of Governmental Plan Status

October 28, 2011 — SEC No-Action Letter on Defined Contribution Plan Fee Disclosure Requirements

September 13, 2011 — DOL Technical Release 2011-03, Interim Policy on Electronic Disclosure of 401(k) Plan Fees

September 13, 2011 — DOL/EBSA Presentation: Participant Disclosure of 401(k) Plan Fees

July 13, 2011 — DOL Final Extension of Applicability Dates for Final Regulations on Defined Contribution Plan Participant Fee Disclosure

May 31, 2011 — DOL Proposed Extension of Applicability Dates for Fee Disclosure Regulations

February 11, 2011 — DOL News Release Delaying Applicability Date of 408(b)(2) Regulations

Council Materials

May 1, 2015 — Council/SPARK Institute Letter to IRS Regarding Guidance on Hardship Distributions & Plan Loans

January 5, 2015 — Group Letter to OMB Regarding 408(b)(2) Regulatory Project

November 19, 2014 — Council Comments to DOL/EBSA Regarding Use of Brokerage Windows in 401(k) Plans

October 15, 2014 — Group Letter to EBSA Regarding Annual Window for Fee Disclosures in Participant-Directed Individual Account Plans

September 12, 2014 — Council Letter to IRS Concerning Suspension or Reduction of Safe Harbor Nonelective Contributions

September 4, 2014 — Benefits Briefing Webinar Presentation Slides: Money Market Fund Guidance & Regulations (Michael Hadley, Davis & Harman LLP & Bob Holcomb, Great-West Financial)

September 3, 2014 — BENEFITS BLUEPRINT: SEC Adopts Money Market Reforms (Prepared by Michael Hadley, Davis & Harman LLP)

July 3, 2014 — Council Comments to DOL/EBSA Regarding Target Date Fund Proposal

June 10, 2014 — Council Comments to DOL/EBSA Regarding Proposed Regulations on Fee Disclosure/Reasonable Contract or Arrangement Under Section 408(b)(2) (Guide for Fiduciaries)

January 17, 2014 — Proposed New Automatic Enrollment Safe Harbor

October 9, 2013 — Benefits Law Briefing Presentation Slides: Hot Topics for 401(k) Plan Sponsors (David Godofsky, Alston & Bird)

August 20, 2013 — Council Letter Responding to PBGC Request for Information on Missing Participants in Individual Account Plans

August 7, 2013 — Council Comment Letter to EBSA Regarding ANPRM on Pension Benefit Statements

July 26, 2013 — Benefits Briefing Webinar Presentation Slides: Benefit Statements Proposed Regulations Part II

May 30, 2013 — Benefits Briefing Webinar Presentation Slides: Benefit Statements Proposed Regulations

March 13, 2013 — Council Letter to Treasury/IRS Requesting Guidance for In-Plan Roth Conversions under Section 902 of ATRA

March 13, 2013 — Areas of Needed Guidance Regarding In-Plan Roth Conversions under Section 902 of ATRA

August 21, 2012 — Group Letter to SEC Regarding Regulation of Money Market Funds

July 14, 2012 — Council Letter to Assistant DOL Secretary for EBSA Phyllis Borzi Regarding FAB 2012-02 Q&A No. 30

July 12, 2012 — Issue Summary: Brokerage Window Rule Issued by DOL Immediately and Effectively Establishes New Law in Violation of Legally Required Notice & Comment Rules: Withdrawal of the Rule Needed As Soon As Possible

June 25, 2012 — Group Letter to Assistant Labor Secretary for EBSA Phyllis Borzi Regarding FAB 2012-02 Q&A No. 30

June 21, 2012 — Benefits Briefing Presentation Slides: Retirement Plan Fee Disclosure Guidance & FAB 2012-02 (Kent Mason & Michael Hadley, Davis & Harman)

June 19, 2012 — Council Letter to SEC Regarding Regulation of Money Market Funds

June 15, 2012 — Council Letter on IRS Advance Notice of Proposed Rule on Determination of Government Plan Status

June 15, 2012 — Council letter to DOL on Q&A 30 of Field Assistance Bulletin 2012-02

June 13, 2012 — Testimony of Allison Klausner (Honeywell) on Behalf of the American Benefits Council before the ERISA Advisory Council Working Group on Examining Income Replacement During Retirement in a Defined Contribution Plan System

May 15, 2012 — Council Summary: New Issues Raised Regarding Brokerage Windows and Similar Arrangements (Prepared by Kent Mason of Davis & Harman LLP)

April 25, 2012 — Sample Glossary Of Investment-Related Terms For Disclosures To Retirement Plan Participants (Version 1.01)

March 27, 2012 — Council Background and Proposal Regarding Participant and Service Provider Fee Disclosure Guidance

March 22, 2012 — Benefits Briefing Presentation Slides: 408(b)(2) Fee Regulations

January 19, 2012 — Council Letter to DOL Requesting Extension of Fee Disclosure Rules

June 15, 2011 — Council Comments to DOL Regarding Proposed Extension of Applicability Dates for Fee Disclosure Regulations

January 13, 2011— Council Comment Letter to DOL Regarding Target Date Funds

Council Materials

March 26, 2015 — Council Amicus Brief In re: American International Group Inc. 2008 Securities Litigation, Second Circuit Court of Appeals

August 25, 2014 — Council Amicus Brief in Tatum v. RJR Pension Investment Committee et al, Requesting En Banc Hearing by Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals

August 11, 2014 — Benefits Law Briefing Presentation Slides: ERISA Litigation & Company Stock (Theresa S. Gee, O’Melveny & Myers)

June 26, 2014 — Summary of Supreme Court Decision in Fifth Third Bancorp et al. v. Dudenhoeffer et al (Courtesy of Davis & Harman LLP)

April 25, 2014 — BENEFITS BLUEPRINT: Altered States: Managing Employer Stock Funds in the Absence of the Moench Presumption (Prepared by Theresa S. Gee, O'Melveny & Myers LLP)

February 3, 2014 — Council Amicus Brief with U.S. Supreme Court in Fifth Third Bank v. Dudenhoeffer

August 1, 2013 — Council Amicus Brief in Tatum v. RJR Pension Investment Committee et al, Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals

June 28, 2013 — Council Amicus Brief in Harris v. Amgen, Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals

February 20, 2013 — Council Amicus Brief in Abbott, et al v. Lockheed Martin Corporation, U.S. Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals

August 17, 2011 — Council Amicus Brief in Griffin & Gardner v. Flagstar, et al, U.S. Sixth Circuit Court of Appeal

May 13, 2011 — Council Amicus Brief in George et al v. Kraft, Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals

March 7, 2011 — Council amicus brief to the Sixth Circuit in the case of Raymond M. Pfeil and Michael Kammer v. State Street Bank and Trust Company

Employer-sponsored retirement plans play vital role in ensuring national, personal financial security
September 15, 2011

For information on Puerto Rico Plans, see the International Issues page.