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FNCE205 Investment Management

Published : 16-Sep,2021  |  Views : 10

Question:

You are an investment advisory employee.  You are aware that ERISA may define certain of your fiduciary activities in a certain manner. You have been asked to look at the ERISA Rules regarding fiduciaries, as well as the revisions to the rule that are pending. Discuss whether you believe you are an ERISA fiduciary and how at least 2 standards of conduct may apply to your work. Also, discuss at least 2 scenarios in which the revisions to the DOL fiduciary rule may affect your work.  In the memorandum, clearly explain how you may be a fiduciary.  Then discuss how the revisions may affect your fiduciary status.  

Discuss best practices that may be implemented to mitigate any obstacles to your business operations.

Answer:

Purpose

This memorandum will discus ERISA rules regarding fiduciaries, as well as the revisions to the rules that are pending.

Summary

ERISA is the Employee Retirement Income Security Act was enacted in 2nd of September 1974. It was enacted as a federal law whose main aim was to establish minimum standards for pension plans in private sector. It also aims to facilitate asset protection for Americans so that those funds placed in retirement plans are secure and will access them once they retire. This memorandum discusses the rules regarding fiduciaries. For example, persons or organization that owes to another an ethical duty of good faith and trust. The memorandum also discusses standards of conduct that may apply to work, how to be a fiduciary and how fiduciary status are affected by revisions. Moreover, the memorandum will also address the best practices that may be implemented to mitigate obstacles to business.

Discussion

ERISA rules require fiduciaries to run plans established prudently and in the interests of beneficiaries, as well as providing benefits and paying expenses incurred by the plans. ERISA rules protect one's plans assets as it requires those who have authority and control over the plan management and plan assets be subjected to fiduciary responsibilities.

I believe in ERISA fiduciary. ERISA has got important standards of conduct that are critical to work. Some of them are like being prudent while discharging your duties. ERISA requires fiduciaries to act prudently and honestly, acting solely to interests of beneficiaries as they protect other people’s assets and following plan documents. Fiduciaries who fail to adhere to the principles of conduct established by ERISA are personally liable to pay for losses incurred to the plan and to return profits made through back plans and improper use of plan assets. 

Scenarios in which the revisions to the DOL fiduciary rule may affect your work.
The Department of Labor (DOL) has currently anticipated new fiduciary rule which applies to financial institutions and the advisors working with retirement plans. Under the new rule, all advisors working with retirement savers, are identified investment advice fiduciaries and are subjected to the impartial standards that require recommendations that need to be made to the best interests and knowledge of the clients. This will affect my work as an investor and have such a contract; I will have the ability to sue their advisers in court if to the best to their knowledge their interest haven't given the priority.

How to be a fiduciary

The department of labor conflict laid a 2015 proposal offer of a four-part on how one can become a fiduciary. If one renders advice to a plan, plan fiduciary, plan participant or beneficiary may become a fiduciary. One may be a fiduciary through an under a written or verbal agreement, arrangement or understanding.

How the revisions may affect my fiduciary status.

The revisions to the fiduciary rule will affect how fiduciaries offer their services to the client. As a fiduciary, I will be required to offer advice to the customers that are for his or her best interests but not only the one suitable to them. Therefore, the clients’ best interests will be a core goal of a fiduciary rather than a profit goal. This rule may improve the status of the fiduciary in the society as he will be viewed as a professional who holds a high position in the pension field.  

Best practices to mitigate obstacles related to fiduciary business operations

Consulting professional help

Fiduciaries are required and expected to act prudently as experts. If one is not an expert, should seek to get assistance.

Formation of an independent retirement plan committee

Once an independent retirement plan committee has been formed, to downplay the obstacles, the committee should be given the responsibility to plan and take action on its behalf. The committee should also be bestowed with authority to ensure regular meetings and carry out documentations of all meetings, discussions, and decisions. This independent committee will have no influences from the fiduciaries.

Understanding your contracts, services, expenses and revenues

This can be facilitated through reading the businesses contracts with vendors and understanding the services provided to the business plan, how much they cost and who should bear the costs.

By knowing your plan as a fiduciary business

This can be achieved through administration of the plan according to the business plan document and ensuring contributions are made on a timely basis.

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