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Morgan Griffith leads effort to preserve paper options for retirement documents

morgan griffithCongressman Morgan Griffith led a bipartisan letter signed by 47 members of Congress in support of preserving paper options for retirement documents.

The letter, sent to the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs of the White House Office of Management and Budget, urged the rejection of the U.S. Department of Labor’s draft rule “Default Electronic Delivery by Employee Pension Benefit Plans under ERISA,” which would allow plan administrators to provide participants and beneficiaries certain mandatory disclosures through electronic means by default.

“For retirees in rural and remote areas underserved by Internet access, including parts of Virginia’s Ninth Congressional District, electronic delivery of retirement plan documents is simply not an option,” said Griffith, R-Va. “Shifting to default electronic delivery places an unfair burden on them. I urge the Federal Government to remember these citizens and reject this rule.”

“AARP believes that the proposed rule—as the Department itself acknowledges—will leave large numbers of participants without the retirement disclosures they need to manage their plan and make informed decisions about their benefits. The proposed rule does not improve disclosure or transparency for participants, and is not consistent with ERISA’s requirements. The proposal should therefore be withdrawn and substantially modified,” said David Certner, AARP Legislative Counsel.

“The Coalition for Paper Options applauds the strong, bipartisan outpouring of support to block forced e-delivery,” said John Runyan, executive director of the group. “The digital age can bring many benefits but forcing citizens into it before they are ready is a recipe for cyber scams and ID theft. Millions still prefer paper delivery and that should remain the default, especially for important financial disclosures like retirement plan information,” Runyan added.

The Democratic lead on the letter is Congressman A. Donald McEachin (D-Va.).

The full text of the letter can be found here.