What type of employer would benefit from adopting the AutoMEP?
AutoMEP is available to any size employer. Employers who wish to outsource their fiduciary liability would benefit the most from adopting the AutoMEP. New or growing companies who wish to offer a competitive retirement plan would also benefit from AutoMEP. Employers who are required to have an annual audit now could enjoy a unique benefit of not having to pay for that audit and deal with the hassle that goes with preparing for it by being part of AutoMEP.
Does the AutoMEP offer flexibility in designing the plan?
Most plan design options are decided by each adopting employer. AutoMEP allows adopting employers to maintain flexibility by determining company contributions, vesting schedules, plan eligibility requirements, and other key plan features. The AutoMEP can integrate with other employer sponsored qualified retirement plans.
What is Fiduciary Liability Insurance?
Under ERISA, retirement plan fiduciaries may be held personally liable for a breach of their responsibilities in the administration or handling of employee benefit plans. Fiduciary Liability Insurance will cover claims arising out of errors or omissions in the administration and fiduciary oversight of the plan. The protection offered through Fiduciary Liability Insurance can cover financial and legal expenses resulting from claims and the protection of personal and professional assets should a claim be successful and result in damages.
What does AutoMEP provide in regard to reducing fiduciary liability?
AutoMEP reduces most of the employer fiduciary liabilities by transferring those liabilities to a professional Plan Administrator and other independent fiduciaries.
- AMI Benefit Plan Administrators, Inc. serves as the Plan Sponsor, the Plan Administrator and ERISA 3(16) Fiduciary Recordkeeper.
- Rehmann Financial serves as the Third Party Administrator ("TPA") providing ERISA 3(16) Fiduciary compliance services.
- Rehmann Capital Advisory Group serves as the ERISA 3(38) Investment Manager.
- Alta Trust serves as the Directed Trustee.
AutoMEP also reduces the employer’s liability for monitoring the plan costs. This is performed by AMI Benefit Plan Administrators, Inc. Except for their own costs, AMI Benefit Plan Administrators, Inc. manages and approves the expenses of the plan.
What is a 3(16) Plan Administrator?
An ERISA Section 3(16) Fiduciary acts as THE Plan Administrator. The 3(16) Plan Administrator is responsible for managing the day to day operation of the plan. By engaging a 3(16) Plan Administrator, the plan sponsor shifts fiduciary responsibility for the services contracted (e.g., plan reporting, participant disclosures, distribution authorization, plan testing, etc.). Rehmann is providing certain 3(16) plan administration services to AutoMEP.
What is a 3(38) Investment Manager?
A 3(38) Investment Manager is a codified investment fiduciary on a retirement plan as defined by ERISA section 3(38). The duties of a 3(38) are set by ERISA and further enhanced by precedent from the Department of Labor. The 3(38) is responsible for selecting, managing, monitoring, and benchmarking the investment offerings of the plan. Rehmann Capital Advisory Group is functioning as the 3(38) Investment Manager.
As the 3(38) Fiduciary within AutoMEP, what is the Rehmann Capital Advisory Group’s process in selecting and monitoring core funds?
The 3(38) Fiduciary has a regular process for reviewing funds. Reports are created that provide results of these reviews and recommendations. These reports can be found in the secure section of the website.
What is ERISA Section 408(b)(2) and what is the purpose for it?
ERISA Section 408(b)(2) requires a “covered service provider” to provide the plan fiduciary with certain disclosures concerning fees and services. AMI Benefit Plan Administrators, Inc. provides this disclosure for AutoMEP. The plan advisor is considered a “covered service provider”, and, therefore, must provide to its clients a statement that discloses compensation payments and services rendered.
Does AutoMEP assist employees in setting retirement plan goals/determining gaps?
Yes, see the iJoin tab for more information. The iJoin tool for participants is included in the AutoMEP pricing. iJoin also has a service available for financial advisors that will allow them to see plan metrics, launch email campaigns and provide additional tools to engage participants. Contact AMI for a quote.
What is ERISA Section 404(a)(5) and how is the requirement met through AutoMEP?
ERISA Section 404(a)(5) requires that disclosures regarding plan fees be made to every plan participant annually and quarterly. The regulation requires plan fiduciaries to provide quarterly statements of plan fees and expenses deducted from accounts, cost and other information about investments available under the plan, and access to supplemental investment information. AMI Benefit Plan Administrators, Inc. satisfies this requirement.
What is Fiduciary Bond Coverage?
An ERISA Fidelity Bond is a type of insurance that protects the plan against losses caused by acts of fraud or dishonesty. Fraud or dishonesty includes, but is not limited to, larceny, theft, embezzlement, forgery, misappropriation, wrongful abstraction, wrongful conversion, willful misapplication, and other acts. The Fidelity Bond required under ERISA specifically insures a plan against losses by persons who handle plan funds or property. This is not the same as Fiduciary Liability Insurance that insures fiduciaries against losses caused by breaches of fiduciary responsibilities.
How are AutoMEP fees determined?
Fees for each adopting employer of the AutoMEP are determined by the number of participants and the size of plan assets. Each adopting employer enjoys better pricing on products and services due to economies of scale.
If my client adopts AutoMEP, what are my responsibilities as the plan advisor?
The AutoMEP allows great flexibility for the plan advisor to tailor services to the employer’s needs. Automatic enrollment is provided, but the plan advisor can decide how involved he/she wishes to be in this process. You will still need to manage the relationship with your client and decide what level of support you wish to provide to the plan participants.
Does an advisor need to be approved to use either DFA or FlexPATH funds in the plan?
No, the 3(38) Advisor has already received approval for the AutoMEP to utilize these funds. Any adopting employer can use DFA or FlexPATH funds.
How can I use AutoMEP tools to identify non-qualified assets for wealth management business?
If you choose to utilize the GAP/Contribution Analysis reports, the participant may provide information related to assets held outside of the AutoMEP plan that can be incorporated into an ensuing conversation with the participant. This can lead to more assets being rolled into the plan or opportunities for outside wealth management.
Am I able to use the tools available through AutoMEP to assist me with my prospecting and sales activities?
AutoMEP does have tools to assist advisors on the AutoMEP website (www.theautomep.com).
I have heard about using a cash balance plan as a retirement strategy for key employees. Can I coordinate other plans with AutoMEP?
AutoMEP is a 401(k) retirement plan that can be paired with other qualified plans by the same employer who is also participating in AutoMEP. The AutoMEP 401(k) plan can be designed to work together with the cash balance plan to provide the maximum benefit to the key employees as long as the Cash Balance plan is also administered by Rehmann, who is providing 3(16) plan administration services for AutoMEP.