Plan fiduciaries must act as prudent experts under ERISA, and are therefore held to a high standard of care with respect to plan-related decisions regarding investments, service providers, plan administration and general ERISA compliance issues.
Most prudent plan sponsors hire a plan advisor to help them adhere to ERISA’s rigorous standards and to meet their objective of offering a best practices retirement plan to their employees. ERISA rules are clear — every decision you make as a fiduciary must be in the best interests of plan participants and their beneficiaries, and certain relationships may result in prohibited transactions.
Attributes of a Good Advisor
Why You Should Hire One
Ability to help evaluate funds and providers objectively and without conflict of interest
Familiarity with ERISA
Ability to keep the committee updated on litigation, legislation and regulations impacting plans and fiduciaries
ERISA section 404(a) requires fiduciaries to act with the skill, knowledge and expertise of a prudent expert
Expertise with Plan Design
Ability to help plans maintain qualified status while continuing to meet the goals and objectives of our organization
Knowledge of the Provider Marketplace
Ability to ensure that our plan is being administered in the most efficient manner and for a reasonable price
Qualified Plan Investment Expertise
Ability to evaluate, select and monitor fund performance
Ability to demonstrate procedural prudence in a well-documented manner
Ability to educate employees regarding plan highlights and how to create an appropriate investment strategy
Acceptance of Role as a Co-Fiduciary
Willingness to acknowledge in writing that they’re a co-fiduciary to our plan with respect to the investment advice being delivered
Full and Open Disclosure
Fully and openly discloses all sources of fees being received on a direct and/or indirect basis
About Retirement Plan Advisory Group
Retirement Plan Advisory Group (RPAG) is an alliance of accomplished retirement focused advisors representing over 400 member firms, serving 28,000 plan sponsors with more than $200 billion in collective assets under influence. Learn more at rpag.com.