DOL Fiduciary News: April 14, 2017
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DOL faces tough road in revising or repealing fiduciary rule
InvestmentNews; April 13, 2017
As the Department of Labor begins to review its fiduciary duty regulation, it faces a daunting road ahead to modify or repeal the measure.
If the agency makes changes — as the Feb. 3 directive from President Donald J. Trump seems to foreshadow — it could generate lawsuits from proponents. But the DOL will not get the same benefit of the doubt from the courts in that round of lawsuits that it has in current litigation brought by opponents of the rule.
The DOL has been undefeated so far in court defending the rule in part due to something known as Chevron deference. That principle arose out of a 1984 Supreme Court case, Chevron U.S.A. Inc. v. Natural Resources Defense Council Inc., in which the court ruled that the Environmental Protection Agency's interpretation of the Clean Air Act was "entitled to deference." Since then, courts have given agencies the leeway to enforce their own regulations if there's any ambiguity surrounding them.
DOL In Open Revolt Over Fiduciary Rule Delay
401kspecialist.com; April 13, 2017
Russia, immigration, cabinet nominees—Trump has bigger fish to fry, so don’t expect much movement with the fiduciary rule one way or another. That was the generally accepted attitude in the aftermath of the election and something pundits and politicos routinely pitched. They were (very) wrong.
Just how wrong is detailed by The Wall Street Journal Wednesday in a scathing op-ed that employs words like “mutiny” and “rebellion.” It describes attempts by the bureaucracy (which we assume to mean DOL rank-and-file) to resist the president’s regulatory overhaul, with the fiduciary rule as casus belli.
The short take is that there’s a Deep State of sorts operating within the department that’s determined to see the rule through, President be damned
Courts Could Block DOL Fiduciary Changes
Barrons; Apr 13, 2017 @ 64:49 pm
The courts could make it very hard for the Department of Labor to make major changes to its fiduciary rule, InvestmentNews reports.
“If the agency makes changes — as the Feb. 3 directive from President Donald J. Trump seems to foreshadow — it could generate lawsuits from proponents,” the publication writes. “But the DOL will not get the same benefit of the doubt from the courts in that round of lawsuits that it has in current litigation brought by opponents of the rule.”
The courts have a history of skepticism toward regulators that reverse course in a new presidential administration. That was on display when the Reagan-era National Highway Transportation Safety Administration attempted unsuccessfully to do away with a rule involving automatic seat belts and airbags in vehicles..