Academic journal article Journal of Accountancy

Locating a 401(k) Provider: What to Do When a Client Asks for Help

Academic journal article Journal of Accountancy

Locating a 401(k) Provider: What to Do When a Client Asks for Help

Article excerpt

When a client asks for advice on establishing a 401(k) pension plan, many CPAs are not on comfortable ground. While they may have a general knowledge of pension plans, they probably lack the in-depth know-how to offer specific advice. In fact, they may even be hesitant to recommend to the client just any pension specialist. After all, if the recommendation doesn't work out, the CPA's relationship with the client may be jeopardized.

We asked a compensation consultant and CPA, Keith A. Tobias, executive vice-president of Compensation Resource Group, Inc., Menlo Park, California, what advice he gives CPAs confronted with this problem. His counsel follows.

There are many pension consulting firms that provide 401(k) services, which include design, administration and, in some cases, fund management. Such firms fall into two groups: large, national firms with regional offices and small providers dedicated to limited geographical areas, usually the cities where they are situated. Smaller providers are in the majority.

Probably the best way to locate a local provider is through a CPA firm's network of business contacts. …

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