Goodbye to hidden 401(k) fees - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

Goodbye to hidden 401(k) fees

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AMARILLO- Hidden fees associated with your401(k) will soon be a thing of the past.

"Sometimes, there are hidden fees in a retirement plan," Senior Vice President Stella Knickerbocker with Amarillo National Bank said. "Sometimes the plan sponsors don't know what their fees are because they are not disclosed very easily and you have to do a lot of digging to find out what the cost will be."

If you're fed up with seeing your retirement shrink with maintenance and security fees, the U.S. Labor Department is on your side.

"There was an initial disclosure which had to be sent out by July 1 to the plan sponsors," Knickerbocker explained. "Every party that's involved with providing services for a 401(k) plan has to disclose their fees."

Employers will be required to disclose those fees to plan participants by Aug. 30.

This new policy will help improve communication and let consumers decide if their money is being put in the right place.

"There is a lot of disparity out there," Knickerbocker said. "I think it's just to level the playing ground to let everyone make informed decisions."

The new disclosure will also help participants figure out how big of a bite retirement plan fees are taking out of their total savings.

Dale Buckner, a retirement planning specialist says employees should still have trust in 401(k) plans.

"We like 401(k) plans, especially if they allow you to have matching money," he said. "It's free money if your employer is going to give you 5-percent and you give 5-percent---that's the ideal place to save."

And hopefully you'll be able to save a little bit more after learning exactly where your money is going.

The U.S. Labor Department now requires retirement plan providers to send out fee disclosures at least once a year.

Financial specialists say if you aren't happy with the fees associated with your 401(k), one possibility is to roll that plan over into an IRA.