Dept. of Labor Issues a Proposed Rule Allowing for Electronic Disclosure of Retirement Plan Information in Lieu of Paper Statements
Today the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) announced, in accordance with President Trump’s Executive Order 13487, Strengthening Retirement Security in America, a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to allow online retirement plan disclosures. According to DOL, the NPRM would “offer a safe harbor for employees who want to make retirement plan disclosures accessible on a website, rather than sending volumes of paper documents through the mail.”
DOL estimates that the NPRM would save an estimated $2.4 billion over the next ten years for ERISA-covered retirement plans by eliminating materials, printing, and mailing costs associated with furnishing printed disclosures. Plan participants would be notified that information is available online, including instructions for how to access the information and the right to request copies of the information.
The NPRM also includes a separate request for information that contains detailed questions covering a broad range of disclosure-related topics, including scope, content, design and delivery. Responses to these questions will enhance DOL’s record and inform whether additional changes should be made in response to that feedback in the future.