Category Archives: Business Consultant

Retirement plan

A Plan for Retirement

What is a qualified retirement plan?

A qualified retirement plan is a popular savings tool that millions of Americans use to help prepare for retirement.

An example of this is a 401(k) plan. Employees in this type of plan make pre-tax contributions to their retirement plan accounts through automatic deductions from their paychecks. Over time, savings may grow, helping you prepare for retirement. Your qualified retirement plan can provide you with a number of savings advantages, such as the potential for reduced taxes, the ability to take advantage of compound earnings and more.

Retirement plan

And why is it important?

This plan has been set up by your employer. By participating in your company’s retirement plan, you’ll be able to take greater control of your financial future. You’ll also be able to take advantage of some attractive benefits the plan offers.

The potential to pay less in taxes

The more you contribute to your plan, the larger your retirement savings (and tax savings) may be.

Each 401(k) dollar you contribute to your retirement plan is taken from your paycheck before taxes are applied. This may lower your taxable income. It might even put you in a lower tax bracket.

The earnings on contributions to your plan grow tax-deferred until withdrawn. And since you may be in a lower tax bracket in retirement, you might pay less tax when the money is withdrawn than if you were taxed today.

Retirement plan

What Makes Us So Unique? There Are a Lot of Reasons

The decision to outsource your retirement plan to experienced industry professionals should be pretty straightforward. Either you want to retain total flexibility and responsibility (and liability) for plan oversight, or you’ve decided you would rather hand off almost all of the fiduciary duties and liability to a third party. Once that decision has been made, the next decision – who best to take over these duties – is equally important. We think this is where we have a huge advantage over the rest of the industry.

Multiple_Employer_Plan

The Platinum 401K is unique in its ability to have brought the first multi-provider solution to the 401k Outsourcing marketplace. Our annual recurring plan revenue – which is fully disclosed in the personalized proposal we generate for your plan – is identical regardless of which provider is selected. We also rebate back all recurring “revenue sharing” as a credit against our annual asset based compensation fees. This strategy lowers your costs and increases your plan returns. Where it’s contractually possible, we will simply carve out” all revenue sharing fees completely. Your custom plan proposals will provide complete details and additional information that you should read carefully.

We were also the first program of our type in the country to utilize a CEFEX-Certified 3(38) Investment Manager on a multiple employer plan of this type. The Centre for Fiduciary Excellence (CEFEX) is an independent global assessment and certification organization. They work closely with investment fiduciaries and industry experts to provide comprehensive assessment programs to improve risk management for institutional and retail investors. CEFEX certification helps determine the trustworthiness of investment fiduciaries. This is an important point of differentiation that you and your employees need to fully appreciate. The annual CEFEX audit of fiduciary practices of the Investment Manager provides a high level of confidence and protection for the plan and the participants.

Center for Fiduciary Excellence

Finally, we are industry leaders in terms of both experience and expertise in these types of programs. When the U.S. Department of Labor’s ERISA Advisory Council sought input on Outsourcing Employee Benefit Plan Services in 2014, The Platinum 401k CEO Terrance Power was asked to provide expert testimony before the group in Washington, D.C.

The findings of the Council have already led to several bipartisan legislative proposals in Congress that are expected to greatly expand the availability and benefits of these types of programs across the country.

We look forward to continuing to work with our supporters and friends in Washington to help broaden retirement plan coverage for working Americans. Read More

Retirement Plan Outsourcing Allows You to Focus on Your Business

Increasing operational and compliance concerns are causing employers to consider alternatives to traditional “single employer retirement plan” programs. In the past, employers needed to assume full responsibility for investment fund selection and monitoring, changing regulatory requirements, approval of QDRO’s, employee hardship requests, beneficiary payments, Form 5500 filings, plan documents, annual notice requirements, and much more. Quarterly investment and plan committee meetings tie up senior employee schedule time as employers struggle with what seems like an ever-increasing workload of regulatory and compliance hurdles. Additionally, in most cases employers shoulder personal financial responsibility for any mistakes that might be inadvertently made in operating their plan. This is unacceptable when there are other options available to the employer.

The Platinum 401k Can Handle All Of These Challenges And More!

Our unique multi-provider program is the leader in the retirement plan industry. With over 25 years of experience in working with multiple employer plan clients and with the flexibility to tailor investment providers – and pricing – to each client, our professionals enjoy a unique reputation for retirement plan excellence across the country.

Multiple Employer Plan

What Does All Of This Mean To You And Your Company’s Retirement Plan?

Investment Provider Flexibility

The Platinum 401k allows you the ability to choose from a selection of leading investment providers.

Plan Design Flexibility

Our program can seamlessly accommodate any existing prototype document plan design.

Pricing Flexibility

By custom pricing each adopter individually, clients can receive pricing concessions as assets grow.

Reduce Your Fiduciary Liability and Focus On Running Your Company

You can eliminate your role as a Plan Trustee, and also reduce or eliminate many of the traditional duties associated with running a retirement plan. Save time, save money, and enjoy peace of mind.

Lower your costs, lower your liability, and have less headaches. Run your 401k plan just like you run all of your other employee benefit programs – hire a provider who then assumes the responsibility for virtually all of the day-to-day fiduciary oversight! Read More

Multiple Employer Plan

It’s Time for the DOL to Rescind their Advisory Opinion 2012-04A

On May 29, 2012, the U.S. Department of Labor issued Advisory Opinion 2012-04A.

This document explained the Department of Labor’s position, at that time, on the use of multiple employer plans as they relate to companies who did not have any specific commonality or nexus that would otherwise tie them together.

It did not change the Internal Revenue Code Section 413(c) one bit, nor did it appear to change the position of the Internal Revenue Service on these types of programs. It did require multiple employer plan adopters to file individual Form 5500’s, incur the cost for an individual annual plan audit as required under current regulations, and to possess an ERISA bond for their portion of the plan.

Perhaps a walk down memory lane might offer some perspective as to why the Advisory Opinion was issued in the manner in which it was.

Multiple Employer Plan

In April 2012, noted “fiduciary expert” and multiple employer plan proponent Matthew Hutcheson was indicted on charges of stealing millions of dollars from a multiple employer plan that he oversaw (Hutcheson was eventually found guilty and sentenced to 17 years in federal prison for his crimes in 2013). The DOL issued a press release on June 14, 2012 (two weeks after the Advisory Opinion 2012-04A was released) announcing that they had obtained an injunction against Hutcheson relating to ERISA violations surrounding that case. They were right to do so.

Why is this timeline important? Clearly, during the time that the DOL was considering attorney Robert Toth’s request for a favorable opinion from them, the entire Hutcheson mess came to light…..and had the kneejerk effect of creating an “all multiple employer plans are bad” reaction from the DOL.

While on the surface, this could appear to be a rational reaction to the theft of millions and millions of dollars from plan participants.

A deeper dive into the Department of Labor’s own records of enforcement from their website, however, show much greater problems with operational compliance and theft occurring from single employer defined contribution and defined benefit plans when compared to multiple employer plan by an enormous margin.

It’s not even close. It’s not the plan structure that led to the theft, it was the criminal who was running the plan. Read More...

Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce Endorses the Platinum 401k for Their Members

The 6,000 member Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce has endorsed The Platinum 401k as the retirement plan solution for their members across Central Massachusetts.Teamwork-meeting-The-Platinum-401K

“We’re delighted to have secured the endorsement of one of the largest regional chambers in the country”, stated American Pension Services President Terrance Power. “The Chamber was looking for a retirement program to bring to their members that would provide them with the benefits associated with a multiple employer plan program without their incurring any plan sponsor or fiduciary liability. The Platinum 401k program fits their requirements perfectly.”

As the largest Chamber in New England, the Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce is dedicated to enhancing the region’s economic prosperity and the vitality of its business community. The mission of the Chamber is to support existing businesses and promote economic development in the Worcester region by being a bold, strong, articulate and effective advocate. The Chamber believes that a strong business community is a catalyst to a dynamic area in which to live.

The Platinum 401k is a multi-provider multiple employer plan administered by American Pension Services, Inc. of Clearwater Florida. Montgomery Retirement Plan Advisors serves as the ERISA 3(38) 3(21) a fiduciary to the plan. The program is structured to eliminate plan sponsor/plan trustee liability, annual plan audits and Form 5500 submissions, investment selection, ERISA bonding, and much more. Overall fiduciary liability is greatly diminished for employers with existing 401k plans under these types of programs.

American Pension Services, Inc. is one of the nation’s most experienced administrators of multiple employer plans. President Terrance Power, CFP, AIFA, ERPA, QPA, CRPS has been working with multiple employer plan clients for over 20 years. Information about The Platinum 401k program may be found on their website at www.ThePlatinum401k.com.