Retirement Plan Sponsors
Qualified retirement plans constitute a significant portion of our assets under management. Most assuredly, the dynamics of this constantly evolving market require that as an advisor, we continually inform and counsel our retirement plan sponsors and participants on issues which affect and impact the operation and ongoing maintenance of their plan.
As an example, recent developments in the disclosure rules governing plan expenses have created specific requirements for plan sponsors to determine and document certain plan expenses and fees which then must be properly disclosed to plan participants. Additionally, it is our understanding the IRS, Department of Labor (DoL), and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) are working and communicating in concert to ensure plans are being operated properly with emphasis on the adherence to Title I of ERISA which addresses the "exclusive benefit" rules for plan participants.
For our retirement plan clients, Davis & Wehrle can assume a consultation role only, or we can be retained to act in the capacity of a financial advisor to the plan in which we acknowledge our role as a plan fiduciary. As an example, our duties can include the selection and monitoring of the plan investments as well as providing investment advice to plan participants. In either role, we take our responsibilities seriously.
Once we are retained, a separate and unique Retirement Plan Advisory Agreement is executed (with the plan sponsor) in which the duties and obligations of each of the parties (Davis & Wehrle, LLC and the plan sponsor) are delineated. The agreement also discloses all compensation paid to Davis & Wehrle, LLC as the plan advisor. Finally, the plan sponsor is provided with a comprehensive checklist of duties and responsibilities for all associated parties (custodian, third party administrator, etc.) involved in the operation of the retirement plan.
From a participant's aspect, we sincerely believe there is value in a qualified retirement plan sponsored by their employer. Should a participant or a beneficiary require additional planning and consultation over and above the employee enrollment meetings, we will schedule a follow-up appointment (in person, if necessary) to address any financial planning questions or issues. Quite often, we are able to integrate all sources of retirement income which then can be displayed to the participant/beneficiary utilizing our client reporting system.