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David Levine

By David Levine | 8/8/2019
The loss of Americans’ privacy through the growing use of their data continues to be a major topic in the media. This focus is now turning to the retirement industry. Plan and participant data plays a key role in our retirement system – from the basic operation of retirement plans, to designing... READ MORE
By David Levine | 5/7/2019
Every week brings a new story of cyber breaches in the retirement industry. Many of these stories focus on service providers such as recordkeepers. Others focus on data and payroll security at plan sponsors. However, not to be forgotten are cybersecurity challenges for advisors. The SEC's Office... READ MORE
By David Levine | 1/31/2019
Advisors have long played a key role in advising plan sponsors and their employees on their 401(k) plans. However, as the role of advisor has continued to evolve, another area has garnered a lot of attention — defined contribution health care “accounts.” These “accounts” have been around for... READ MORE
By David Levine | 11/8/2018
So-called “open” multiple employer plans (MEPs) allow multiple unrelated and unaffiliated employers to participate in a single plan that is recognized as such by both the IRS and DOL purposes. In 2012, however, the DOL put out two Advisory Opinions that effectively closed the door to open MEPs.Ever... READ MORE
By David Levine | 8/9/2018
Well, here we go again. After years and years spent on the fiduciary rule, we’re back to the start. It truly is "Groundhog Day." At this point, we can all make guesses, but I’m going to refrain from suggesting where the Department of Labor, Securities and Exchange Commission, state legislatures, or... READ MORE
By David Levine | 3/29/2018
In 2016, I wrote a column about the rise of litigation and enforcement against plan advisors. At the time, there were only a few lawsuits involving advisors. Now, unfortunately, this concern has come to pass. What should an advisor and his or her advisor organization do now?As our firm has... READ MORE
By David Levine | 12/7/2017
Today, retirement advisers face the never-ending worry of commoditization.Recently, this reality hit home for me. An outstanding retirement adviser who had bent over backwards for her client — often going way beyond the services required of her in her services agreement — was shown the door in an... READ MORE
By David Levine | 4/26/2017
The Trump administration and the Republican-controlled Congress are expected to move forward a significant number of legislative priorities. High on this list of priorities is tax reform. Regardless of your political leanings, tax reform is very likely to have a significant impact on your IRA and... READ MORE
By David Levine | 2/1/2017
Over the past decade, the Department of Labor has implemented new fee and expense disclosure on Schedule C of Form 5500, increased service provider fee disclosure under ERISA section 408(b)(2), participant level fee disclosure under ERISA section 404(a), and new conflict requirements under the... READ MORE
By David Levine | 8/18/2016
Earlier this year I wrote a post about ERISA litigation going “off the rails.” Alas, it feels like we've gone from bad to worse since then.In the past week, a whole new round of lawsuits involving academic institution 403(b) plans has hit the news. Despite the “newness” of the targets (large... READ MORE
By David Levine | 3/30/2016
Today, financial wellness solutions seem to be sprouting up everywhere, with questions (both business and legal) coming from all corners of the benefits industry. Not a day goes by without a article or study on how important financial wellness is, how it is a priority for a number of employers, or... READ MORE
By David Levine | 2/17/2016
Every time I see an alert about a new ERISA lawsuit, I have a Pavlovian response. I immediately pull up the complaint, check which plaintiffs’ firm filed the suit, and dig in to read. This routine has become far too frequent the past six months.For a decade, plan sponsors and service providers have... READ MORE
By David Levine | 1/20/2016
For many, daily life now involves hopping in a taxi, Uber, or Lyft as a means of travel. But ridesharing is just another step in the evolution of transportation. If you had looked around the recently concluded Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, it would be clear that the transportation system... READ MORE
By David Levine | 1/5/2016
Last year brought us new class action lawsuits on a number of fronts: proprietary funds, stable value funds and more. What does 2016 hold? The answer: Probably more of the same, with creative new theories of damages and liability continuing to appear on a regular basis.Most recently, a lawsuit was... READ MORE