Archive for January, 2014

Recent IRS Ethics Phone Forum

The IRS recently held a phone forum regarding ethics for benefit professionals. The forum information is located on their website at http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-tege/ethical_stds_phoneforum_presentation.pdf. The discussion included a brief reminder of the contents of circular 230, a discourse on due diligence, and comments on what is an unconscionable fee. Another interesting reminder that was part of the discussion but not the slides was a note of the importance of TPA’s, regardless of size, having an internal review setup to maintain ethical standards and accuracy.

Thanks for reading and have a wonderful day!  Please sign up for my blog and follow me on twitter @ChristineGurney.  Please like my facebook author page at http://www.facebook.com/ChristineGurneyHsiung and follow me on Pinterest at http://www.pinterest.com/chrisgurneyerpa/. If you have not already done so, please check out purchasing my book at https://www.createspace.com/3964647.

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January 30, 2014 at 3:33 pm Leave a comment

Retirement Plan Distribution Tax Reporting Errors

It’s that time of year – 1099-R’s! As relevant as last year, I thought this was a good post to share!

Christine Gurney Discusses US Pensions

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The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has posted an interesting article regarding IRS Form 1099-R reporting errors on their website.  Located at http://www.irs.gov/Retirement-Plans/Form-1099R-Errors, the article mentions that just basic recipient information is frequently incomplete or incorrect such as addresses or identification numbers.  They go on to point out that corrected forms can be completed.  I encourage all retirement plan participants to review their tax forms even if they have already filed their individual returns this year.  I had to request a corrected 1099-R form myself from a former TPA that I had worked for who had neglected to provide accurate information to their return preparer.  There are a lot of low quality administrators out there, and it is important for participants to be aware of the situation and confirm that their information is accurate.  For individuals who choose TPA’s, I suggest picking up a copy of my book at either the…

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January 24, 2014 at 1:20 pm Leave a comment

Changes in Retirement Plan Participation

The IFEBP has an interesting article, “Report: Fewer Participate in Company Retirement Plans” by Stuart Pfeifer, on their website at http://www6.lexisnexis.com/publisher/EndUser?Action=UserDisplayFullDocument&orgId=2778&topicId=100023899&docId=l:2043526655&start=1&topics=single. The article noted that there was a minor decrease in overall participation. I also found the note regarding how government employees participating at a much higher rate interesting. The relationship between age and education and participation rates are likely not a big surprise for most of us.

Thanks for reading and have a wonderful day!  Please sign up for my blog and follow me on twitter @ChristineGurney.  Please like my facebook author page at http://www.facebook.com/ChristineGurneyHsiung and follow me on Pinterest at http://www.pinterest.com/chrisgurneyerpa/. If you have not already done so, please check out purchasing my book at https://www.createspace.com/3964647.

January 10, 2014 at 3:05 pm Leave a comment

Happy New Year 2014!

Happy New Year! I hope it is a great one with wonderful opportunities and much joy!

In the current issue of The Atlantic, there is an interesting article about research on cheating done by Harvard University (Beck, J. (2014, January/February 2014). Who Cheats-And Why. The Atlantic, Page 27). What caught my attention was a conclusion that majoring in business increased the likelihood that one would cheat or lie for personal gain. I think most people have encountered a situation where a coworker claimed credit for their work or idea. Or perhaps, a business partner refused to keep their part of the deal. I certainly have encountered surprisingly ruthless behavior that included extensive lying and other unethical behavior in the workplace to only see that behavior rewarded by management well aware of the situation.

To me, this seems like the right time for a new years resolution for many professionals to behave ethically going forward. Personally, my experience has been the many benefits professionals benefit by having strong ethics policies. In addition, these are not businesses that consider them to be just for show. By establishing the infrastructure, organizations would create the necessary framework to deal with ethical issues and to send a message that this type of behavior will no longer be tolerated. Do you think its time for a change?

Thanks for reading and have a wonderful day!  Please sign up for my blog and follow me on twitter @ChristineGurney.  Please like my facebook author page at http://www.facebook.com/ChristineGurneyHsiung. If you have not already done so, please check out purchasing my book at https://www.createspace.com/3964647.

January 3, 2014 at 6:21 am Leave a comment


Christine Gurney

A pension professional who shares her thoughts and ideas about the pension world for industry members and anyone else interested.

@ChristineGurney

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