Broker Check

What to tell your district officials about evaluating your 403(b) plan

The administrator of the plan should have only one task: to make sure the plan is serving the best interests of plan participants.

You have a right to question your supplemental retirement plan sponsor about the administration of the plan, as well as the choice of investments.

After all, it’s your money.

If you have the opportunity to meet your school business official directly, don’t hesitate to ask the following:

  • “Do you know if your district has purchased fiduciary coverage?”
  • “What do you have in place in the way of a ‘hold harmless’ agreement in the event participant-investors challenge the appropriateness of the investment selections you’ve presented to them? For example, what has the district done to ensure that there are not similar, overlapping product offerings at different prices?”
  • “How do you evaluate the vendors that are currently offering 403(b) plans to educators and staff?”
  • “Do you have any plans to compare your current plan to alternatives that may have fewer fees and more benefits?”
  • “Doesn’t the school district currently participate in buying co-ops to lower the cost of natural gas, school supplies and health insurance?
  • “Why don’t we apply the same approach toward the district’s 403(b) plan?”
  • “Have we ever considered pooling the buying power of the district to get a better deal at a lower cost for our 403(b) or 457(b) plan?”
  • “If not, why not?”