Aon Hewitt Washington Report
April 10, 2017
House and Senate Recess for Two Weeks
Congress has adjourned for spring recess and is scheduled to return to the Hill on Monday, April 24, 2017.
DOL Releases Final Rule Extending Fiduciary Rule Applicability Date to June 9, 2017
On April 4, 2017, the Department of Labor’s (DOL's) Employee Benefits Security Administration released final regulations announcing a 60-day extension of the applicability dates of the fiduciary rule and related exemptions, including the Best Interest Contract Exemption. The announcement follows a February 3, 2017, presidential memorandum which directed the DOL to examine the fiduciary rule.
According to the DOL, advisers to retirement investors will be treated as fiduciaries and have an obligation to give advice that adheres to “impartial conduct standards” beginning on June 9 rather than on April 10, 2017, as originally scheduled. The DOL has requested comments on the issues raised by the presidential memorandum, and urges commenters to “submit data, information and analyses responsive to the requests, so that it can complete its work pursuant to the memorandum as carefully, thoughtfully and expeditiously as possible.”
In the period between now and January 1, 2018, when all of the exemptions’ conditions are scheduled to become fully applicable, the DOL intends to complete its review under the presidential memorandum and decide whether to make or propose further changes to the fiduciary rule or associated exemptions. In the absence of further action by the DOL, the delay announced in the final regulations does not affect the requirement to enter into a Best Interest Contract and other requirements that are currently scheduled for January 1, 2018.
The final regulations become effective on April 10, 2017. For other provisions related to applicability dates, please refer to the guidance.
The final regulations are available here.
The news release is available here.