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An Overview of ERISA Benefits

The Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 protects retirement funds for American workers. It is designed to ensure that your nest egg is around when you retire. It imposes rules on employers that offer retirement plans to protect your investment. This article will go over ERISA protections and how they may apply to your job.

ERISA requires plans to provide you with sufficient information so you can make an informed choice regarding your retirement. You must be provided with eligibility information, expected return on your investment, risk and other important information.

It sets minimum standards for when your benefits must become accessible and accrue interest. It also sets minimum requirements for eligibility to access these retirement plans. Additionally, your spouse must be allowed to join your retirement plan as a beneficiary. If your retirement plan is cancelled or your employer goes out of business, then your benefits are guaranteed by the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation.

It imposes disclosure requirements on persons or companies that manage your retirement. Specifically, you must be able to access information on your retirement assets and seek financial planning advice. If your plan is mismanaged, you have the right to sue the person or company that managed it, which could be your employer or a third party.

Remember, ERISA sets plan management and reporting requirements. It does not dictate benefit payouts or dollar amounts. It is there to ensure that your retirement is protected, not that you receive a certain dollar amount.

If your retirement benefits were unfairly  denied, then you may want to contact an attorney. An attorney can help you enforce your rights to ensure that your and your co-worker's retirement are protected at all times.

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