Labor Department proposes new 401k adviser rules

By Associated Press
Posted Oct. 21, 2010 at 2:26 p.m.

The Department of Labor says it wants to expand the number of consultants and advisers it can hold legally responsible for the advice they give retirement plan providers.

Proposed new rules would impose stricter regulations on consultants, advisers and appraisers who offer investment related advice to companies that provide 401(k) plans to workers.

Currently, some of these professionals provide advice on investment options and products offered in a retirement plan while receiving compensation from the investment companies whose products they recommend.

Yet, under current regulations they cannot be held legally responsible if the advice turns out to be faulty.

The department will accept comments on the proposed rule until Jan. 20. After that the rule likely will be finalized and could be enacted as early as the middle of 2011.

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