This afternoon, ERIC submitted a letter to the Department of Labor (DOL) on the issue of missing and unresponsive participants. The letter requests that the DOL provide a compliance road-map to assist plan sponsors in fulfilling their obligations for missing and unresponsive participants. With this goal, ERIC made six specific recommendations to the DOL:
- Extend Field Assistance Bulletin (FAB) 2014-01 to searches for missing participants in non-terminating plans and defined benefit plans
- Articulate additional examples of compliance steps (in addition to extending FAB 2014-01) that fiduciaries can consider in fulfilling their duties with respect to missing participants
- Provide examples of compliance steps related to unresponsive participants
- Provide guidance that supports, and provides fiduciary protection for additional distribution options particularly in the defined contribution plan context
- Provide some fiduciary protection (and monitoring guidance) for plan administrators that rely upon third parties to conduct missing participant search activities
- Provide additional but separate guidance on the related issue of uncashed checks and returned electronic file transfer payments.
You can read the full letter by clicking here.
Article by Aliya Robinson, Senior Vice President of Retirement Policy