401(k) rip-offs: How to protect yourself

Horse And Handler Statue,  Department Of Labor
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The 401k was first established as a supplement to pension plans. It is now the primary resource for most Americans to successfully retire. We must begin to treat them as such.

There may be larcenous gremlins in your 401(k) eating your retirement money. They aren’t easy to identify and are often buried in plan documents. You will need a trained professional to exterminate them.Many of the biggest 401(k) money-eaters escape the notice of your employer, who is legally obligated to ferret them out. Your company may have bought 401(k) services from middlemen who suck up your money in the form of commissions, administrative or management fees.

How do you know if your money is being siphoned off? In many cases, you will never know, nor will your employer take the time to audit your plan to get rid of the worst abuses.

The U.S. Department of Labor is working on new rules that would make money managers connected to retirement plans fiduciaries. That would set a higher standard that would put your interests first.

The money trust is vigorously opposing these guidelines, which could potentially eliminate or curtail some of the worst skimming practices. Yet that may not have much impact if the Labor Department does little or no enforcement, which has been the case in the past.

via blogs.reuters.com

Wall Street has used the 401(k) plans as a cash cow. It may be time to stop this and put more money in the accounts of the participants. Unless of course you believe Wall Street can use the money.

Please comment or call to discuss how benchmarking your plan would benefit you and your participants.

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