advice-standards package, which
includes Reg BI, broker-dealers and
investment advisors “may want to begin
considering the terms that would be
acceptable in DOL’s alignment package.”
Groom attorneys Kevin Walsh and
George Sepsakosis agreed that a rule
from Labor would likely come in the
fall and wrote that after the release of
Labor’s rule, “there will likely be an
opportunity to submit comments before
the alignment proposal is finalized.”
Many in the industry would like clar-
ity on how Reg BI “and the new inter-
pretation of solely incidental will impact
ERISA fiduciary status,” the attorneys
wrote. “The DOL can also provide clar-
ity that the SEC did not around preemp-
tion over state rules,” they noted.
The division responsible for drafting a
new Labor fiduciary rule, the Employee
Benefits Security Administration, was
also scheduled to be reorganized on Oct. 1.
Lawmakers urged EBSA, however,
According to a Aug. 27 letter sent
to EBSA employees by the unit’s head,
Preston Rutledge, the move is an expansion and reorganization of EBSA’s leadership structure.
“The new structure will provide
expanded opportunity for career advancement, give the Regional Offices a greater
voice in the National Office, and help
ensure that enforcement activities are
consistent nationwide,” Rutledge wrote.
But Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash.,
ranking member of the Senate Health,
Education, Labor and Pensions
Committee, and Rep. Bobby Scott, D-Va.,
chairman of the House Committee on
Education and Labor, asked Rutledge to
delay the reorganization and to explain
the rationale for the move.
“The proposed reorganization
appears to be a meaningful structural
change from the status quo, shifting
authorities to EBSA’s politically appoint-
ed deputy and creating a new director
position to oversee regional offices,” the
“We have questions about the need
and basis for this proposed reorganization and whether EBSA’s vital mission
will be impaired,” the lawmakers wrote.
Also forthcoming from Labor, according to Gerstein of Stradley Ronan is new
guidance from the DOL on proxy voting. President Donald Trump issued an
Executive Order in April that, in part,
required Labor to examine if new guidance in this area was necessary, according to Gerstein.
“The DOL could decline to issue
new guidance, since Field Assistance
Bulletin 2018-01 addressed proxy voting,” Gerstein said.
Washington Bureau Chief Melanie Waddell can
be reached at email@example.com.
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