Program Benefits

Service and Support

Service and Support to ease Plan Administration

Superior client service distinguishes Equitable. Personalized, timely support and guidance can help provide satisfaction for many years to come.

Support Team

A highly trained and knowledgeable Retirement Program Specialist will work closely with a plan sponsor to help establish a plan and make sure it continues to meet business needs and those of its employees. A Retirement Program Specialist is supported by a large and experienced group of retirement plan experts:

  • Plan Design Specialists — assist in developing customized plan design recommendations based on the unique situation and employee demographics, as well as plan objectives.
  • Plan Implementation Team — works to accelerate the conversion process and minimize any disruptions.
  • Personal Retirement Plan Account Manager — is available to answer questions concerning plan administration, recordkeeping and transaction processing.

Easy-to-Use Automated Recordkeeping

All plans benefit from sophisticated web-based automated account administration tools, which ease routine recordkeeping and reduce errors while helping save on administrative time.

To minimize recordkeeping tasks, there is access to the latest generation of technology at the plan sponsor website. Smart systems help reduce the time required to enter data and the potential for errors.

The secure website offers these benefits:

  • System detects errors before payroll data is processed. As a result, you can submit plan contribution data quickly, easily and securely.
  • Online transaction reporting capabilities enable employers to electronically submit enrollment data, update information, perform most transactions and access plan information, whenever they want.
  • Advanced analysis reporting enables employers to create customized reports at any time.

Eligibility Tracking, Auto-Enrollment and
Deferral through Save 1-2-3SM

Optional Save 1-2-3SM feature, available at no additional charge, offers automatic enrollment and deferral increase.

According to the Department of Labor1, approximately one-third of eligible workers do not participate in their employers' 401(k) plans. Studies suggest that automatic enrollment plans (in which workers "opt-out" of plan participation rather than "opt-in") could reduce this rate to less than 10%, significantly increasing retirement savings.

The Pension Protection Act (PPA) of 2006 removed impediments to employers adopting automatic enrollment, including employer fears about legal liability for market fluctuations and the applicability of state wage withholding laws.

Our automatic options, known as Save 1-2-3SM from Equitable, enable plan sponsors to:

  • Automatically enroll eligible employees.
  • Select the initial contribution deferral rate.
  • Implement automatic deferral increases, in which the employee's deferral rate increases each year, at a rate the employee determines.

Save 1-2-3SM can improve employees' ability to make appropriate choices and also provide plan sponsors, with the ability to:

  • Increase the overall participation of non-highly compensated employees, which could allow highly compensated employees to defer more.
  • Potentially make it easier for plan to pass non-discrimination tests, alleviating the added expense of providing an unbudgeted company matching contribution.
  • Lessen overall burden of planning frequent enrollment meetings.
  • Take advantage of Safe Harbor protections afforded by the Pension Protection Act.

There are certain employee regulatory notification requirements if this feature is elected. Retirement Program Specialist can help analyze business structure to help determine if auto-enrollment and/or auto-deferral features are right for the plan.

Fast Answers to Employees' Questions

The participant website and Voice Response Unit (VRU) are both available 24/7, and live Customer Service Representatives are available during regular business hours in multiple languages and for the hearing-impaired. Instant access to answers for employees means fewer questions.

1U.S. Department of Labor. 2016. [ http://www.dol.gov/ebsa/newsroom/fsqdia.html ]

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