One of the inevitable results of Congress’s failure to cobble together some sort of compromise on what the most suitable “Securities Fix” would be for the 403(b) CIT is a flurry of activity to find some way to craft a solution which would permit 403(b) plans’ investments in 81-100 trusts without a statutory fix. From
Secure 2.0’s New QDRO Rules: The Mainstreaming of the QLAC?
202(b) actually does not make any statutory change to any of the Code’s or ERISA rules governing the distribution of a plan’s assets pursuant to divorce or separation orders. Instead, it instructs Treasury to amend its QLAC rules, which are obscurely found under Required Minimum Distribution applicable to dc plans which purchase annuities (Reg 1.401(a)(9)-6). The regs must be changed to reflect that if a QLAC is issued as a joint and survivor annuity (which it is required to be unless spousal consent is obtained, under plans to which such rules apply), and a divorce subsequently occurs prior to the date the annuity payments actually begin, the DRO “will not affect the permissibility of the joint and survivor annuity benefits” as long as that order meets certain requirements.
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Secure 2.0’s Unresolved 403(b) CIT Securities Law Issue
One of the more curious circumstances under SECURE 2.0 arises from Act Section 128, which purports to permit 403(b) plan custodial accounts to invest in interests in Collective Investment Trusts (CITs), referred to as “81-100” group trusts in the Act.
Section 128 fixed that part of problem, as it amended the Code to permit the investment of 403(b) assets in group trusts, alongside mutual funds. But, as the Senate Finance Committee noted in its own Committee Report to the EARN Act, “In order to permit 403(b) plans to participate in a group trust, certain revisions to the securities laws will be required.” Those necessary revisions, however, never made it into SECURE 2.0…
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The “Entity” Difference Between 403(b) and 401(a) Plans
When we assess how to implement the tremendous changes that we see on the horizon, whether it be implementing unique lifetime income vehicles, PEPs, collective trusts, or any other of the sort of the innovative programs being develop which are designed to enhance retirement security. Putting them all into play requires attention to this obscure detail.
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