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3 Important Takeaways From The Final DOL 401k Ruling

If you've opened up a newspaper, turned to a news cable station or checked out one of the many financial websites recently, you may have stumbled upon a headline discussing the Department of Labor's final ruling on 401(k) fee disclosures (watch Smart401k CEO Scott Holsopple on Fox Business discuss this recent DOL ruling). This final ruling is great news for you and other 401(k) participants as information regarding fees and expenses related to 401ks will soon be more readily available.

If you are interested in some heavy reading you can check out the full details of the Department of Labor's final ruling with 401(k) fee disclosure. But if you're like most people, this ruling and the jargon surrounding it may bring about more questions than answers. To help clear up the confusion we offer three important takeaways from the final disclosure ruling.

  1. Retirement plan fees are not new. For some retirement investors, this may be the first they are hearing about fees associated with their retirement plan. These fees are tied to the management of the plan and the investments offered through the plan. The new rule will provide easier-to-understand communication with a more detailed description of the fees.
  2. Availability of information can help you negotiate for better fees. This is a great opportunity for your employer to negotiate on your behalf. With increased information available about the fees being paid better decisions can be made.
  3. Be proactive. Above all, the ruling allows you to better understand the important information in your plan. By doing that a certain level of power has been given to you. Don't just sit on the sidelines, get in the game and work with your plan provider to create the best plan options for you.

The continued progress towards transparency and communication regarding 401(k)s should be met with open arms. With more information available, you can better educate yourself on what investment options are best for you and your retirement plan.

Take Action

Want to see how your 401(k) stacks up with other plans? Check out At Brightscope, you can view a variety of information about your company's retirement plan, including how its fees compare to other plans.

Evan Davis

Marketing Associate

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Smart401k is a web-based investment advisory service providing unbiased recommendations to help people invest in employer-sponsored retirement plans. Smart401k provides service to nearly 11,000 clients who collectively have more than $2 billion in assets. Plan participants receive personalized, fund-specific investment recommendations and the support of professional investment advisers available to discuss all investment questions. Based in Overland Park, KS, Smart401k is online at