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Fiduciary Considerations in Selecting Target Date Funds as Default Investment Alternatives

Product Code - LGA164
Speaker(s): Jonathan M. Cerrito, Blitman & King LLP; Michael R. Daum, Blitman & King LLP
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Due to a regulatory safe harbor created by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) in 2008, the use of target date funds has become commonplace in Section 401(k) plans and other defined contribution pension plans that allow participants to direct their own investments. Further, such funds are often designated as the plans’ default investment option for participants and beneficiaries who fail to select their own investments.

However, recent studies show that many assumptions underlying the appropriateness of target date funds in the employee benefit context do not always reflect reality. Because of this, there are steps that plan fiduciaries and the attorneys advising them should take in connection with the selection and monitoring of target date funds in order to ensure that they are satisfying their fiduciary duties and helping participants and beneficiaries secure sufficient funds for retirement.

This program will alert practitioners who represent participant-directed plans (or plan sponsors of such plans) about recent DOL and related guidance important to the fiduciaries of such plans who are hoping to rely on the safe harbor for selecting a qualified default investment alternative.

Educational Objectives:

• Understand the background of the ERISA framework for choosing a default investment alternative and the protection that provides fiduciaries.
• Learn about Department of Labor regulations and the proliferation of target date investment funds as the default alternative.
• Find out about the varying frameworks and issues involving target date investment funds.
• Discover steps for ERISA fiduciaries to take before selecting a target date investment fund as the default option for their plan.

Who would benefit most from attending the program?

Practitioners who represent participant-directed defined contribution retirement plans or their fiduciaries.

Program Level: Intermediate.

Credit Available: CLE. For more information, please click on the “CLE Credit” tab.

Jonathan M. Cerrito, Blitman & King LLP; Michael R. Daum, Blitman & King LLP

Jonathan M. Cerrito, Blitman & King LLP
Jonathan Cerrito is a partner in Blitman & King LLP’s Manhattan office, where he counsels sponsors of multiemployer and single-employer plans, tax-exempt entities, and executives on all matters of tax, ERISA, employee benefits, nonqualified deferred compensation arrangements and the employee benefit aspects of mergers. Mr. Cerrito was named by the Whitman School of Management of Syracuse University as one of the “40 Under 40,” a distinction based on extraordinary achievement in career and contributions to the community. Mr. Cerrito earned an L.L.M. in Taxation from New York University and a J.D. from Quinnipiac School of Law. He is licensed to practice in New York.

Michael R. Daum, Blitman & King LLP
Michael Daum is an associate with Blitman & King LLP and is based in the firm’s Syracuse office. Mr. Daum advises the sponsors of employee benefit plans on various matters, especially those relating to plan investments and meeting regulatory requirements such as those relating to health care reform. Mr. Daum earned a J.D. from Michigan State University College of Law. He is licensed to practice in New York.

This program’s CLE-credit eligibility varies by state. Bloomberg BNA is an accredited provider in the states of New York*, California, Pennsylvania, Texas and Virginia, and most other jurisdictions grant CLE credit on a per-program basis. At this time, Bloomberg BNA does not apply directly to the states of Florida, Rhode Island, Montana and Hawaii although credit is usually available for attorneys who wish to apply individually. Additionally, the following states currently do not grant credit for Bloomberg BNA OnDemand programming: Arkansas, Ohio, Nebraska, and Delaware. All requests are subject to approval once the live webinar has taken place or the customer has viewed the OnDemand version. Please contact the Bloomberg BNA accreditations desk if you have specific questions that have not been addressed.

If you have further questions regarding a specific state or how to file for CLE credit, please contact Bloomberg BNA customer service at 800-372-1033 and ask to speak to the CLE Accreditation Coordinator.

Hardship Policy
Bloomberg BNA offers a hardship policy for attorneys earning less than $50,000 per year. If an attorney wishes to take advantage of this option, he or she must contact Bloomberg BNA directly. For attorneys who are unemployed or earning less than $35,000 per year, a full discount off the price of the program will be awarded upon written proof of hardship. Attorneys earning between $35,000 and $50,000 per year will receive a 50% discount off the price of the program. Any attorney working in the public service sector also qualifies for a special price. If you have further questions regarding the hardship policy or seek additional information, please contact Bloomberg BNA customer service at 800-372-1033 and ask to speak to the CLE Accreditations Coordinator, or email us at

For more information about Mandatory or Minimum Continuing Legal Education (MCLE) requirements, visit the American Bar Association website at

*Bloomberg BNA is an accredited provider in New York for experienced attorneys only.