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Expanded Fiduciary Rules Proposed by the Department of Labor

February 1, 2011, Barbara Uberti Manerchia

The Department of Labor ("DOL") released a proposed rule that would expand the definition of a fiduciary under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 ("ERISA"). If adopted, it will be easier for retirement plans to recover from investment advisers for losses caused by breaches of fiduciary duty. As Assistant Secretary of Labor Phyllis Borzi explained, "The proposal will ensure that plans receive advice based on reliable information that protects the interests of plan participants and beneficiaries. We believe that this proposal more closely reflects the statutory language of ERISA and the realities of the current investment marketplace, and therefore will ensure those who provide investment advice are held accountable as fiduciaries under the law.

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