Morin, et al v. Essentia Health:  A New Twist on Fee-based Cases against Plan Sponsors

Excessive Fee LawsuitA case recently filed in Minnesota took a unique approach to accusing a plan sponsor of charging participants excessive fees. Essentia Health and its subsidiary maintained two plans. One retirement plan established in 1965. The second was a 403(b) plan established in 2009. The original plan consisted of approximately 16,848 participants and $982 million in assets and was recordkept by BMO Harris. The 403(b) plan consisted of $103 million in assets and was recordkept by Lincoln Financial.[1] Continue reading

Todd Hughes Quoted in PLANSPONSOR

PLANSPONSER Article - Getting to a Better PlaceTodd Hughes, JD, Director, ERISA and Vendor Services, was recently quoted in PLANSPONSOR’s article “Getting to a Better Place – Improving a plan through the RFP/RFI process”. Todd discusses how Pension Consultants was able to help its plan sponsor clients reduce their record keeping fees. He also explains what plan sponsors need to do annually to track their plan fees and services in between the times they go out for a formal search. Click to read the full article in PLANSPONSOR and learn how the RFP process can help deliver a top-performing plan.

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Excessive Fee Lawsuit Reaches Further

At the end of December, the St. Louis based law firm Schlichter, Bogard, & Denton filed yet another in what is becoming a long list of class action lawsuits against retirement plan sponsors. This lawsuit, however, caught the eye of many industry observers because it seems to be pushing the envelope of what a plan sponsor can be sued for further than seen before. Continue reading

What Does Record Keeper Consolidation Mean for You as a Plan Sponsor?

Over the past several years the retirement planning industry has seen a number of large mergers and acquisitions among record keepers.  John Hancock bought New York Life; Great-West, Putnam, and JP Morgan became Empower; OneAmerica bought BMO; and Transamerica bought Mercer just to name a few.  This industry consolidation has been driven by rising technology costs that have made smaller record keepers less competitive.  It has also resulted in commoditization of record keeping services.  Continue reading