Who is a Fiduciary?

A fiduciary is anyone who makes decisions for the plan, causes someone to make a decision about the plan, or, in some cases, provides advice to someone making decisions about the plan. Put differently, it is anyone who exercises control over plan assets, directly or indirectly. Any person (or any group of people) can be a fiduciary. Most commonly, it is a manager, a committee of management and/or employees, a bank trust department, or an ESOP professional.

Are plan advisers fiduciaries?

Normally, plan advisers are not fiduciaries: the plan’s attorneys, appraisers, and other advisors are simply providing advice that someone else is ultimately acting upon. They can, however, become fiduciaries by making decisions, rather than recommendations, for the plan. Investment advisers who buy and sell plan assets, for example, would often be fiduciaries, unless they simply make recommendations on investment choices.

Source: National Center for Employee Ownership (NCEO)

DISCLAIMER: The Articles displayed on this website do not constitute legal advice, nor do they substitute for the advice of qualified professionals. While the Articles displayed on this website are designed to provide information regarding the subject matter covered, we cannot guarantee the accuracy of any statements contained therein. If any legal advice or expert assistance is required, the services of qualified professionals should be sought.

Looking for an ESOP Trustee?

Fill out our free online consultation form to see if we are the right fit for your company.