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What must an ERISA Fiduciary do?
Under the Prudent Expert Rule, an ERISA Fiduciary must:
Act with skill and diligence of a prudent person knowledgeable in the particular action being taken
Carry out responsibilities solely in the interest of plan participants for the exclusive purpose of providing plan benefits and defraying reasonable expenses
Diversify investments to manage risk and impact of large losses
Act in accordance with plan documents when not consistent with ERISA
Who are ERISA Fiduciaries?
Plan Fees and Expenses
Plan fees and expenses must be reasonable.
Reasonableness can be determined by benchmarking against other plans with similar characteristics and features.
Fees should be evaluated considering which services are included.
Comparison among different providers' programs and ongoing due diligence help to ensure that fees and expenses continue to be reasonable.
Reasonable does not mean "cheapest", but the cost should be commensurate with the services added.
Qualified Default Investment Alternatives (QDIA)
ERISA Fiduciaries are relieved of fiduciary liability for the investment of plan assets into a Qualified Default Investment Alternative (QDIA).
QDIAs must be one of the following:
Age-based or target date investments
Participants must have had reasonable opportunity to direct the investments
given notice at least 30 days in advance of plan eligibility AND 30 days in advance of the first investment into a QDIA
Be able to transfer out of the QDIA and into other options
Always have and opt-out option
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