Upcoming retirement plan fee disclosures

The Department of Labor’s Benefits Security Administration recently issued regulations requiring employer-sponsored retirement plans to provide greater transparency for plan participants by disclosing the fees associated with retirement plans and investments. These new disclosure requirements cover Fermilab’s 401(a) and 403(b) plans.

The purpose of the disclosure is to ensure that you, as a participant in the plan, understand the costs associated with your retirement plans, the costs of the investments that you choose and the impact these costs can have on your account over time. These disclosures are intended to help you make more informed decisions when evaluating and selecting investment managers, investments and the services you choose.

Fermilab is required to provide an initial fee disclosure by Aug. 30, 2012, to active employees and those retirees or other former employees who still maintain a balance with one of our retirement plan vendors. An updated disclosure will be issued annually. We have partnered with TIAA-CREF to provide the fee disclosure information for both the 401(a) and the 403(b) retirement plans. These disclosures include information on all plan services, fees and investments.

One fee disclosure will be issued for each plan. The fee disclosures are organized in two sections:

  • Summary of Plan Services and Costs
  • Investment Options Comparative Chart

These documents will help you to evaluate the services you receive and make it easier to understand the associated fees and expenses for those services.

TIAA-CREF will send to your Fermilab e-mail address a notification e-mail by Aug. 30, 2012. This e-mail will provide a link to TIAA-CREF’s website, where you can review the fee disclosure documents electronically. On the TIAA-CREF disclosure website, you will need to select either:

  • 101300 for the 401(a) Fermilab Retirement Plan with TIAA-CREF
  • 101301 for the 403(b) tax deferred accounts with TIAA-CREF, Fidelity, Dreyfus and T. Rowe Price

The information provided in the fee disclosures is not new to the plans. Fees have always been a part of your retirement plans. Each pension vendor provides this information in its prospectus and on its website. The only thing that has changed is that this information must now be provided to you annually in a single document, for all plan service providers and investments. The fees associated with the plan and your investments are one of the factors you should consider when you make an investment decision, along with investment performance, contribution amount and asset allocation.

For more information, contact Wilma Cardona in the Benefits Office.