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Brian Graff

By Brian Graff | 12/10/2021
It’s beginning to look like further action on the Build Back Better budget bill will be pushed back to 2022—which would probably delay the effective dates of two controversial retirement plan provisions. Capping a months-long process of negotiations among Democrats, the House approved an amended... READ MORE
By Brian Graff | 10/22/2020
In late June, the Labor Department issued a proposed rule innocuously titled “Financial Factors in Selecting Plan Investments.” While the proposed rule itself was relatively short and largely uncontroversial, the preamble and supporting analysis of costs left little doubt that the authors saw a... READ MORE
By Brian Graff | 6/24/2020
It has been almost three months since we postponed the 2020 NAPA 401(k) Summit to Sept. 10-12, at Universal Orlando. Here’s an update. When the Summit was postponed, the NAPA Leadership Council determined that moving forward with the Summit would be premised on whether Florida government... READ MORE
By Brian Graff | 3/2/2020
By all accounts last week was pretty bad for the market. All of the major indices fell by more than 10%, and the business news outlets all highlighted that it was the markets’ worst weekly decline since October 2008.  Comparisons to the financial crisis that began in October 2007 are as inevitable... READ MORE
By Brian Graff | 1/15/2020
Ironically, one of the most popular provisions in the SECURE Act also turns out to be one of the most controversial among industry professionals. Specifically, that’s the provision regarding “opening” multiple employer plans, or MEPs. Called Pooled Employer Plans (PEPs) in the SECURE Act,... READ MORE
By Brian Graff | 12/27/2019
Surveys of small business owners have consistently shown cost to be a significant impediment to the adoption of a retirement plan for employees. Well, the recently enacted SECURE Act has a provision that could really make a difference.   Congress has previously tried to address this concern by... READ MORE
By Brian Graff | 12/19/2019
Let’s say you are a plan advisor with experience advising on cash balance, age-weighted profit-sharing, or similarly designed retirement plans – and your client’s accountant calls in April with a problem.  Your shared client (with just a 401(k) plan) had a banner year and they are getting... READ MORE
By Brian Graff | 10/10/2019
If your workforce includes recent college graduates – or even not-so-recent college graduates – it’s likely that some of them have debt associated with their college years – and just as likely that it’s hampering their retirement savings.  Any number of studies have chronicled the impact of this... READ MORE
By Brian Graff | 7/30/2019
Another presidential candidate has proposed to pay for a campaign promise with a tax on retirement savings.    U.S. senator and presidential candidate Kamala Harris (D-CA) announced yesterday that she would propose a financial transactions tax to pay for her “Medicare-for-all” proposal –... READ MORE
By Brian Graff | 7/17/2019
The Wall Street Journal’s editorial board has challenged a specific “pay for” provision in the SECURE Act. But they’re missing the big(ger) picture. One of the main reasons the SECURE Act passed the House of Representatives by the large margin of 417-3 was that, as the WSJ acknowledges, it was “... READ MORE
By Brian Graff | 3/20/2019
Lawmakers in our nation’s capital may have been focused on shutdowns, declared emergencies and “new” deals, but in state capitals across the nation, legislators and regulators have been proposing, passing and implementing change that could dramatically impact your practices and your practice. Most... READ MORE
By Brian Graff | 12/20/2018
The mid-terms are over and the Democrats took back control of the House for the first time since 2010, while the GOP slightly expanded its hold on the Senate majority. Believe it or not, while the talk outside the Beltway has largely focused on the prospects for even more gridlock, the prospects... READ MORE
By Brian Graff | 10/18/2018
ERISA was enacted to provide national protections for participants in employer-sponsored retirement plans – but proposed legislation would undermine those protections.A bill introduced in the Senate in July would create a new type of “open” multiple employer plan (MEP), an employee benefit plan... READ MORE
By Brian Graff | 4/26/2018
The 21st Century is nearly two decades old — so why are we still relying on 17th Century technology for critical participant communications?A generation ago, plan sponsors only had to worry about the annual delivery of a Summary Plan Description. Much has changed since then, but not the mandated... READ MORE
By Brian Graff | 7/17/2017
The debate over our nation’s health care policy has consumed the first few months of the 115th Congress and shows no signs of abating. While it may have faded from the headlines for the moment, House Republicans continue to debate different options for repealing and replacing the Affordable Care... READ MORE
By Brian Graff | 3/30/2017
The November election was a shock to many people. Few anticipated the outcome, which created a political environment that is the most conducive to a comprehensive reform of the tax code since it last happened 30 years ago. Given this reality, a close examination of the Tax Reform Blueprint issued... READ MORE
By Brian Graff | 1/26/2017
A Joker is taking over Gotham City. Known as the New York City Nest Egg Plan, it is an ambitious attempt to close the retirement plan coverage gap for residents of the largest city in the United States. But instead of focusing squarely on the coverage issue — which remains a legitimate concern for... READ MORE
By Brian Graff | 10/24/2016
The 2016 general election is upon us, a knock-down, drag-out fight between two intensely polarizing figures – Hillary Rodham Clinton and Donald J. Trump – vying for votes among an increasingly polarized electorate. In this intensely partisan political atmosphere, it is easy for the topic of saving... READ MORE
By Brian Graff | 2/11/2016
Small business retirement plans are under attack again. Buried in a Treasury Department proposal to make it easier for large corporations to close their defined benefit plans to new entrants is a provision that will make it harder for small businesses to form new retirement plans or maintain their... READ MORE
By Brian Graff | 8/26/2015
There were four days of hearings on the Department of Labor’s proposed fiduciary rule and I kept waiting… and watching… and waiting. But it never came up. And that surprised me. You see, I was fully expecting someone to ask these two questions: “What about individuals who actually want to be... READ MORE