Kowal Investments to host seminar on 401(k) rule changes

The Kowal Investment Group will present the workshop “401(k) Best Practices” on Wednesday, Oct. 20 from 8 to 10 a.m. at the Country Springs Hotel, 2810 Golf Rd., Waukesha.

The workshop will focus on rule changes that apply to 401(k) plan administrators, employers and others who are responsible for corporate 401(k) plans. Guest speakers include Mark Brault, an attorney specializing in the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA), Chip Kuchevar, a third-party 401(k) plan administrator, and Aaron Kowal, a certified financial planner.

Some of the rule changes that the seminar will cover include:

  • New Department of Labor regulations on fee disclosure

“The government wants to make sure everybody knows what they’re paying. A lot of fees are buried in contracts,” Kowal said. “Most fees are being paid out in plan assets. That’s not necessarily wrong, but (the government) wants to make sure people are aware of what they’re paying.”

  • Avoiding a Department of Labor audit

“A big red flag and something that will pretty much guarantee an audit is to delay contributions to a plan,” Kowal said. “When a plan sponsor deducts contributions from a participant’s paycheck, they must put that into the participant’s 401(k) account almost immediately. To not do so must be reported on the plan’s Form 5500 and will be a huge red flag with a shining light to be audited.”

  • New Pension-Like Features

“The DoL is very high on these right now. You can add in a ‘guaranteed lifetime withdrawal benefit’ to the 401(k),” Kowal said. “What this does is protect the participant’s retirement income when the markets go down, allows the participant to benefit when the markets go up, and provides them a source of income they can’t outlive.”

For more information about the seminar or to reserve a spot, call (262) 522-4040.


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