A current topic that is floating around the retirement planning industry is the new DOL rule. The goal of the rule is to protect the savings of investors going into retirement by expanding the types of retirement investment advice covered by fiduciary protections.
The Department of Labor feels that many loopholes exist in the definition of retirement investment advice under the outdated DOL rules. They feel that this exposes many middle class families, especially IRA owners, to advice that may not be in their best interest. Under the DOLs proposed definition, any individual receiving compensation for providing advice that is individualized or specifically directed to a particular plan sponsor (an employer with a retirement plan), plan participant, or IRA owner for consideration in making a retirement investment decision is a fiduciary. Being a fiduciary simply means that the adviser must provide impartial advice in their clients best interest and cannot accept any payments creating conflicts of interest unless they qualify for an exemption intended to assure that the customer is adequately protected.