So far this year, the Department of Labor’s Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) has significantly raised its enforcement efforts in what Andy Larson, director of the Retirement Learning Center, said should serve as a wakeup call to advisors who advise retirement plans and plan sponsors.
In 2011, EBSA said it had closed 3,472 civil cases and obtained monetary results of nearly $1.39 billion. EBSA also closed 302 criminal cases that resulted in 129 individuals being indicted and 75 cases being closed with guilty pleas and/or convictions. DOL also wants to increase the number of its enforcement personnel from 913 to 1,003 this year.
EBSA’s Office of Policy Research on Dec. 15 to voluntarily assist EBSA in its fact-finding mission. In a meeting January 24, a number of those groups suggested that complying with the request would be difficult; the DOL afterwards, nevertheless, set a deadline for those groups to submit data by Feb. 24.