The Practical Realities Of Serving As A Professional Fiduciary

The era of the salesperson is over and the era of the professional retirement plan fiduciary is beginning. Nevertheless, the financial services industry is an industry of salespeople in the throes of figuring out how to become professional fiduciaries. While terms like “independent fiduciary,” “3(38) manager,” and “full/limited scope 3(21)” are becoming commonplace, few have a strong grasp of the legal basics and how they should be applied in structuring a fiduciary advice or management service. Most advisors are still struggling to figure out where they fit and what their responsibilities can or should be under each model. It is also important to note that there are NO formal requirements, i.e., insurance, licensing, registration, education, certifications, designations or continuing CE, required to claim the title of an independent expert fiduciary. Given the increased emphasis by sponsors and the regulators on participant advice, responsibility and transparency, quantifying one’s fiduciary status and responsibilities (or whether to be one at all) as well as learning how to be good at it are now mandatory. Those attending this session will take away invaluable “to do” lists for each fiduciary service model.


Segment One
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Pete Swisher
Sr. Institutional Consultant
Unified Trust Company, NA

Pete Swisher, CPC, QPA, CPC, is Senior Institutional Consultant for Unified Trust Company, NA, in Lexington, Kentucky. An Echols Scholar at the University of Virginia and a former U.S. Marine Captain, Pete is the author of 401(k) Fiduciary Governance: An Advisory's Guide, a fiduciary textbook for the ASPPA QPFC credential. He has spoken nationally on fiduciary management of qualified plans for groups that include ASPPA, the Financial Planning Association (FPA), NIPA, ABA, and others. As the principal author of the "ERISA Boot Camp" workshop series, he delivers 401(k) advisory workshops across the country annually. His articles on revenue sharing, automatic 401(k) and fiduciary issues affecting 401(k) advisors have appeared in Financial Planning Magazine, the Journal of Financial Planning, The ASPPA Journal, Employee Benefits News, ABA Trust & Investments, and other industry publications. His paper, "Post Modern Portfolio Theory," won first prize in the 2005 Annual Call for Papers of the Journal of Financial Planning. Pete is a Certified Financial Planner and Certified Pension Consultant.

For more information, call (859) 608-9920 or email:


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