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DOL Update on Multiple Employer Retirement Plans

OnDemand Webinar (108 minutes)

According to the Department of Labor (DOL), approximately 38 million private sector employees in the United States do not have access to a retirement savings plan through their employer.In response to Executive Order 13847, "Strengthening Retirement Security in America," issued by President Trump in August 2018, the DOL issued a final rule allowing separate employers to join a single defined contribution plan to help reduce cost and administrative duties. The intent is to make it easier to establish a 401(k) or similar defined contribution multiple employer plan (MEP). This is great news for smaller employers who have been discouraged by the cost and complexity of running their own retirement plans, but with this new rule comes questions. How will this rule operate and affect businesses? What are the two authorized approaches for establishing a MEP, and how does an employer know which one is best for their business? What are the requirements under each approach? What should an employer consider when establishing a MEP and how can an employer stay compliant? This topic will address these questions and help businesses navigate the new rule, ensuring compliance. Finally, considerations as to what may lie ahead will also be addressed.


Patricia Beaty, Taft Stettinius & Hollister, LLP
Rachel Pappenfus, Taft Stettinius & Hollister LLP


Overview of DOL's Final Rule on Multiple Employer Retirement Plans

• Why the Rule Was Developed

• How the Rule Will Operate and Affect Businesses

• "Employers" and Permitted "Working Owners" Defined

• DOL's Authorized Approaches for Establishing Defined Contribution Multiple Employer Plans (MEP), e.g., 401(k)

Plan Considerations

• Determining the Best Approach for Establishing a MEP

• Evaluating the Potential Benefits vs. Potential Liability Risks When Considering the Best Approach

• Considering Plan Fiduciary Obligations

• Establishing a Plan and Staying Compliant

Looking Ahead

• IRS Proposed Rule Regarding MEPs

• The SECURE Act