Technical Competence

Technical Competence covers the nuts and bolts of the 403(b) plan market, focusing on regulations at both the state and federal level, along with developments in public-employee plan management.


 

Technical Competence

Technical Competence

By Nevin Adams8/26/2014 • 0 Comments

Fitch Ratings says a recent decision by the board of the California Public Employees' Retirement System (CalPERS) will raise funding pressures on public employers.
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By Nevin Adams8/26/2014 • 0 Comments

With the official report not due until September, a draft report released by the Oregon legislature's Task Force on Oregon Retirement Savings offers a blueprint of a proposed new mandatory auto IRA program for the state.
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By John Iekel8/26/2014 • 0 Comments

The 2014-15 budget that North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory (R) signed into law does more than fund state functions: it also expands state control over state pension fund investments.
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By NTSA Net Staff8/26/2014 • 0 Comments

What if a public safety employee rolled his distribution from a governmental defined benefit plan into a 457(b) plan and subsequently took a distribution of these dollars — would this distribution be subject to the 10% additional tax? In this week’s Tech Talk, Ellie Lowder tells us whether it would, and what other requirements apply. READ MORE

By Nevin Adams8/19/2014 • 0 Comments

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on Aug. 11 announced securities fraud charges against the state of Kansas, claiming that the state failed to disclose that the state’s pension system was significantly underfunded, and the unfunded pension liability created a repayment risk for investors in those bonds.
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By John Iekel8/19/2014 • 0 Comments

Gov. Chris Christie (R) seems to have read the tea leaves correctly in setting up a commission to make recommendations on how to reform New Jersey’s public pension system. And that’s not just regarding the needs of the system — it also appears to be prescient regarding the views of his constituents, according to a study Quinnipiac University released on Aug. 11.
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By John Iekel8/19/2014 • 0 Comments

It’s hurricane season, which brings handling emergencies into sharper relief. Under a 457(b) plan, a hardship distribution can only occur when the participant is faced with an unforeseeable emergency.
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By John Iekel8/19/2014 • 0 Comments

You provided an employee with a 15-year catch-up last year, but you find out that the employee was not eligible for it. Do you just distribute it as 1099 2014 income? Is it considered an excess deferral under Code Section 402(g)? In this week's Tech Talk, Ellie Lowder provides the answers and addresses the consequences. 

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By John Iekel8/19/2014 • 0 Comments

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled recently that an inherited IRA is part of a bankruptcy estate and subject to creditors’ claims. This raises questions: if that is the case with IRAs, does that then have implications for retirement plan assets belonging to those who declare bankruptcy? In this week's MarketBeat, Michael Webb discusses what the Court’s ruling means for those who are in just such a place. 

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By John Iekel8/12/2014 • 0 Comments

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) on Aug. 8 appointed nine members to a non-partisan commission to make recommendations regarding how to reform New Jersey’s public pension and health benefit systems. READ MORE

By John Iekel8/12/2014 • 0 Comments

A school district decides to eliminate vendors and go to a single 403(b) plan provider. Can employees move the funds they have in the de-selected 403(b) plans to IRAs? Do the IRS regulations regarding this take into account that when an employer changes its pension plan, many times clients have the option to roll their funds into the new plan or to roll over to an IRA? In Tech Talk, Ellie Lowder explores the answers to these questions.  READ MORE

By John Iekel8/12/2014 • 0 Comments

State and local pension plans’ investments showed robust growth for the 12-month period that ended June 30, Wilshire Associates reports. These plans’ investments showed median growth of almost 17%, the strongest growth since fiscal year 2011. READ MORE

By John Iekel8/4/2014 • 0 Comments

NTSA has established the Task Force on Retirement Savings Plans, a new committee designed to help lead and guide the discussion and development of policy regarding the automatic enrollment of employees in non-ERISA retirement savings plans.  READ MORE

By John Iekel8/4/2014 • 0 Comments

If you receive a request for a loan from a participant who finished paying off a previous loan from his 403(b) four months ago, can you permit a $50,000 loan from the account since he has no outstanding loans in any plans of the employer? In Tech Talk, Ellie Lowder addresses what can be done in such a circumstance. 
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By John Iekel8/4/2014 • 0 Comments

Citing a need to ensure sustainability of public pensions, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) on Aug. 1 announced the formation of a commission that will include study of the state pension system and how to reform it. This is necessary, Christie said, to ensure that the system is sustainable.  READ MORE

By John Iekel7/28/2014 • 0 Comments

Is the Form 5500 worth filling out and filing in the first place? Not everyone is convinced, reports Benefitspro. But file they must, and the Government Accountability Office (GAO) has come to the rescue, offering suggestions in its recent report, “Private Pensions:Targeted Revisions Could Improve Usefulness of Form 5500 Information” regarding how the form could be made more useful. READ MORE

By John Iekel7/24/2014 • 0 Comments

Is Washington obsessed with rollovers? ASPPA Executive Director and CEO Brian Graff thinks so. “There’s no one who doesn’t care about this issue. There is an obsession with the rollover issue in DC,” said Graff in the July 22 webinar, “Washington Update: Rollovers, Rollovers, Rollovers — it’s All About Rollovers.” He and NTSA Director of Government Affairs and Associate General Counsel Ron Triche discussed the ways in which rollovers are front-and-center on the federal radar screen.  READ MORE

By John Iekel7/22/2014 • 0 Comments

California Public Employees Retirement System (CalPERS) Board members are required to receive 24 hours of financial training every two years under a law just enacted. Gov. Jerry Brown (D) on July 18 signed into law AB1163, a measure Assemblyman Marc Levine (D-San Rafael) introduced to enhance CalPERS members’ financial expertise. Levine introduced the bill on Feb. 22, 2013. 

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By John Iekel7/22/2014 • 0 Comments

Suppose a 62 year-old who is drawing a reduced Social Security benefit understands that he can earn up to $15,480 before beginning to lose Social Security benefits. He calculates that he will be about $3,000 above the $15,480 from substitute teaching income; can he contribute the $3,000 to his 403(b) so as to not lose any Social Security benefits? Ellie Lowder has the answer in Tech Talk. 

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By John Iekel7/18/2014 • 0 Comments

Detroit may well be the poster child for municipal pension irresponsibility (though if there were an award for that, it would be extremely competitive). But give credit where it’s due: the Motor City has also been a model for how to dig out of the public pension hole.  READ MORE

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