Retirement Plan Checkup

Is Your Plan at Risk of a Lawsuit?

  • Lawsuits against retirement plan sponsors have skyrocketed. Excess fees, high cost options with low returns, and limited investment options are among reasons cited.
  • These suits—even settlements and dismissals—occupy resources and distract focus from normal business operations.


A deliberate, thorough approach for retirement plan compliance will decrease the chances this happens to your organization.

Optimatum’s Retirement Plan Checkup proactively supports your fiduciary responsibility, avoids financial penalties and audits, reduces the need for contribution recalculations and revisions, protects against lawsuits and bolsters employee relations efforts.

The three categories below encompass a wholistic review of a retirement plan’s structure, processes and vendors and delivers a comprehensive report including findings, risks, opportunities and potential next steps:

Governance and Oversight

Goal: Review the governance structure, policies and practices which oversee the plan, funds, vendors

  • Appropriate governing bodies and procedures including rules and best practices for committee members, mission, charters. meeting frequency, documentation, etc.
  • Qualified staff filling all necessary positions
  • Established vendor evaluation policies and procedures (reporting, benchmarking, RFPs, etc.)

Data Required

  • Organizational Charts
  • Committee documents, charters, meeting agenda/minutes
  • Documentation/evidence of vendor selection/evaluation


Goal: Review and ensure basic compliance:

  • Complete and consistent plan documents, amendments and SPDs
  • Proactive compliance with current ERISA and SEC regulations
  • Valid, complete and timely 5500 Filing
  • Complete Non-Discrimination Testing

Data Required

  • Applicable plan documents and 5500 filings
  • Policy and procedures
  • Forms (Enrollment, investment selection)
  • Testing Results


Goal: Ensure plan administration aligns with plan documentation

  • Accurate member and pay/comp eligibility
  • Accurate employee contributions and company match
  • Appropriate life event processing
  • Timely and accurate vendor file feeds
  • Proactive IRS plan limits monitoring
  • Complete and timely disclosures
  • Consistency between Plan recordkeeping system, HR/Payroll, HRIS

Data Required

  • Organization charts
  • Plan Administration manuals/documentation
  • Vendor contacts
  • Plan related calculations and communications

Some Statistics:

2022 was a bull market for plan lawsuits with 88 lawsuits filed against 401(k) plans.6
40% of excessive fee suits filed in 2022 were for plans with less than $1 billion in assets.7
20% were for plans with less than $500 million in assets.8

Retirement Plan Checkup Process

1: Bloomberg Law, June 29,2023, 2: Bloomberg Law, April 5, 2022, 3: Napa, October 2, 2023, 4: Investment News, July 20, 2022, 5: Investment News, February 2, 2023. 6: Investment News, February 2, 2023 7: Robinson Bradshaw, July 17, 2023 8: Investment News, February 2, 2023