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Financial Literacy - Securing retirement Click Here
Retirement tool kit
Use these calculators, work sheets and plentiful resources to ensure a comfortable retirement.
Protect your pension
Protect your pension

Know how to spot signs of misuse or mismanagement of your 401(k) plan. Use this work sheet to learn your basic rights as a 401(k) plan participant and to guide you to the appropriate agency for help.

Your rights as a 401(k) plan participant

The Department of Labor, or DOL, recommends that you make all requests in writing. You may have to pay reasonable copying costs for some documents.

The plan is obligated to provide you the information within 30 days of your written request. You may have the right to bring a lawsuit against the plan administrator if delays are unreasonable and within the plan administrator's control.

A court can order the plan administrator to pay you a fine of up to $100 a day for every day your requested plan documents are delayed over the 30-day deadline. If you have trouble getting the documents, contact the Department of Labor or the Employee Benefits Security Administration field office nearest you.

U.S. Department of Labor
Employee Benefits Security Administration
Division of Technical Assistance and Inquiries
200 Constitution Avenue NW, Suite N-5619
Washington, DC 20210

Where to go if you discover a problem
Nature of violation or misuse Agency to contact

Read all about it
Learn about federal pension enforcement initiatives from actual cases.

Former executive of Airtrans trucking company receives a 15-month prison sentence for theft of 401(k) funds.

Two AMS Healthcare Services executives are charged with embezzling money from a 401(k) plan.

U.S. Labor Department sues a former South Carolina executive for failing to remit employee contributions to the company's Savings Incentive Match Plan for Employees Individual Retirement Account, or SIMPLE IRA.

Educational resources
Pension Rights Center in Washington, DC.

Pension Action Center at University of Massachusetts in Boston.

Federal government resources
Print out and study an actual Form 5500.

View work sheet archive

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