Department of Labor's Fiduciary Rule

May 09, 2018

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) on April 6, 2016 released the highly anticipated final version of its “investment advice” regulation (2016 Rule) and accompanying prohibited transaction exemptions, a milestone that was the culmination of a long, arduous and extremely controversial process to adopt new rules relating to the definition of “fiduciary” under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) (and the corresponding provisions of the U.S. tax code). The 2016 Rule covered not only retirement plans subject to ERISA, but also individual retirement accounts and other non-ERISA plans. 

Then, in 2018, the 2016 Rule was vacated by the courts, starting yet a new chapter in this arduous story.  In 2020, the DOL released guidance taking into account the return of the regulation to its pre-amendment form, including a new "prohibited transaction" exemption, new interpretive guidance and other related authority.  

Dechert’s ERISA team has been covering this story ever since it began to unfold, all the way back in 2010.  The links below are to our extensive and comprehensive efforts to chronicle this long and still-continuing saga.   

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