Dissecting the Department of Labor’s Final Fiduciary Rule

In early April, the Department of Labor (DOL) issued a final rule to re-define who is rendered a "fiduciary" of an employee benefit plan under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) by providing investment advice to a plan or its participants or beneficiaries. More than five years in the making, issuance of a final rule to address conflicts-of-interest in retirement advice has been a priority for the White House and DOL to advance its “middle-class economics” agenda in the face of criticism in Congress and by a number of stakeholders.

The final rule replaces 1975 regulations on fiduciary investment advice with a definition that, according to the DOL, “better reflects the broad scope of the statutory text and its purposes and better protects plans, participants, beneficiaries, and IRA owners from conflicts of interest, imprudence, and disloyalty.”

WPI Co-Chair Ilyse Schuman interviewed Littler shareholders and Co-Chairs of the Employee Benefits Practice Group Melissa Kurtzman and Steven Friedman about the changes made in the final rule and what it means for your business and retirement plans.

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Information contained in this publication is intended for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice or opinion, nor is it a substitute for the professional judgment of an attorney.