The Labor Department is looking at a proposal that would allow employers to disclose worker retirement plans via a website.
The idea behind the proposal is to reduce the time and expense of sending lengthy retirement plan documents through the mail, as is traditionally the practice with many businesses.
In a statement, Eugene Scalia, Secretary of Labor, said that by using modern technology, the nation’s employers could realize savings in the “billions of dollars.”
Scalia continued: “The U.S. Department of Labor is focusing on rulemaking that eliminates unnecessary burdens while furthering the needs of the wage earners, job seekers, and retirees of the United States.”
The Labor Department estimates that as much as $2.4 billion in the next decade could be saved by companies through the elimination of printing, paper, and mailing costs.
In offering the proposal, the Department of Labor has also issued a Request for Information for contractors on how to work an online retirement information system.
The deadline for the Request for Information is November 22.
A press release issued by the Labor Department says it is also looking for input on a “broad range of disclosure-related topics, including scope, content, design and delivery.”
The new online retirement information proposal was developed after months of study by the Labor Deparment’s Employee Benefits Security Administration.
The website Plansponsor noted that in addition to putting retirement information online, employers in the near future may be able to further supplant printed policy information by hosting annual meetings with the recordkeeping firms.
Those meetings would be designed to “refresh plan details, such as employer contributions, and how adding e-delivery could simplify their own notification process, whether it’s including asset allocation or savings decisions.”
By Garry Boulard
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