EmpPlans

Help for Employers

FAQ

A: You have undoubtedly spent a lot of time, effort and expense developing a great retirement plan for your employees.  It is imperative to take the next steps to give them the best practical chance at success.  Study after study has shown that average investors consistently and dramatically underperform common market indices.  Why is this?  Quite simply, most investors do not have the time or knowledge required to optimally manage their retirement accounts, they need additional tools to guide them.
A: In our experience, most firms go to great lengths to avoid the title of “fiduciary” in virtually all aspects of their operations.  They do this by limiting their services to providing basic advice and generic guidance to account holders.  StraightLine, however, has embraced the role of a fiduciary since our inception – we always do what’s right and what’s best for each client.  We simply see no other way to operate.
A: There have been numerous laws, agency guidelines, and case law precedents issued over the last few years – most notably the Pension Protection Act of 2006 – that have significantly clarified the issues surrounding fiduciary liability.  This has helped plan sponsors better understand their responsibilities, as well as provide a framework to shift aspects of their fiduciary liability to outside providers such as StraightLine.  Each plan sponsor’s situation remains unique however, and any partnership with a service provider must be customized to maintain the highest level of fiduciary protection.
A: Yes.  We realize that every employer is unique and we must tailor our programs to your specific needs.  We will be happy to sit down with you and discuss ways to offer our service to your employees.
A: Yes.  Our service offerings can be customized to fit your unique needs.
A: No. StraightLine does not sell 401(k), 403(b) or 457 plans. Our objective is to enhance your employees’ retirement readiness through education and account management options.
A:  Yes. Since StraightLine is both independent and unbiased, we can provide you with an objective review of your current plan offerings or any others you may be considering.
A: No. Your employees individually choose whether they want to retain StraightLine to manage their plan investments.
A: StraightLine provides 401(k), 403(b) and 457 investment management for plan participants who prefer having an absolutely independent third-party research team manage their investments within your plan. Keep in mind, we don’t just give advice – we actually manage the participant’s investments – making changes to allocations as needed throughout the year as economic conditions dictate.
A: Many financial advisors certainly offer valuable advice, but rarely do they focus on investment accounts within an existing 401(k), 403(b) or 457 retirement plan.  If and when they do, they are often a representative of the plan’s provider or are connected to the investment options within the plan.

StraightLine has none of the biases or potential conflicts of interest these connections create as we are independent of all fees and investment revenue generated within a plan.  All of StraightLine’s investment decisions are solely in the best interest of our clients and not for the benefit of ourselves, any plan provider or mutual fund.

A: The annual fee ranges from $0 to $1500 per employee per year based on the value of the employee’s account.  There is no fee for accounts with a balance of less than $5000 and the maximum fee of $1500 does not begin until an account balance reaches $1,000,000.  There are no other fees or commissions paid to StraightLine by anyone in connection with this service.
A: When electing to use our management service, your employee shares account access with us for the limited and secure purpose of repositioning the account.  Increasingly, this can be accomplished without obtaining individual login credentials.
A: The security and confidentiality of our clients’ account information is our highest priority.  We employ strict internal and external controls and procedures to secure all information.  For more details, please click here to review our Privacy Policy.
A: Our research team continually reviews market conditions, world events, mutual fund activity and other factors that affect the value of investment accounts. Based on that information, we typically make two to three proactive changes to each portfolio per year as determined by the research team.

We are not market timers.  In fact, we feel that frequent trading in an account can sometimes be detrimental.  Sometimes market trends need to evolve over longer periods of time than many programs allow, thus minimizing the positive impacts in an investor’s portfolio.

A: We use a combination of e-mail, phone calls, newsletters and postal mail to communicate with our clients.  Every time a change is made to their account allocations we will notify them.
A: Yes. The fee structure and approach is exactly the same for retirees and current employees.

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Learn how StraightLine can be of service to you

Let us help you establish your organization as a leader in providing for the financial security of your employees. StraightLine also provides professional account management for individuals with 401(k), 403(b) and 457 retirement accounts. We manage the account for you – making changes to allocations as needed. We also offer an advice-only management option. Please let us know your needs and we’ll get right back to you and provide you with “straight” answers to your questions.

Corporate Headquarters: 165 Kirts Blvd., Suite 100 • Troy, MI 48084
Local / 248.269.8366 • Toll Free / 877.EDU.403b • Email: info@straightline.com

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