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February 22, 2022 / Chris Moore
How small-business owners can offer retirement plans

How small-business owners can offer retirement plans

As a small-business owner, you want to make a workplace retirement plan available to your employees. But you know you don’t have the time or technical background to handle 401(k) administration. So, what do you do?

You might want to consider a Multiple Employer Plan, or MEP, in which a third party takes on the plan administrator role and assumes much of the fiduciary liability. By pooling assets of unrelated employers, MEPs can provide lower administrative costs and added plan features that typically are available only to larger corporate plans.

At the federal level, the SECURE (Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement) Act was signed into law in late 2019. Employers no longer are required to have a common characteristic – such as all being part of an association or professional organization – to join a MEP.Growing savings

The SECURE Act also provides small-business owners with tax credits of as much as $5,000 for starting a retirement plan. These credits apply to businesses with 100 or fewer employees over a 3-year period beginning after December 31, 2019.

A recent survey conducted by Nationwide Retirement Institute showed that 84 percent of small-business owners responded that the SECURE Act would make it easier for them to offer a 401(k) plan. Nearly 80 percent felt it would allow them to offer a more competitive plan, leveling the playing field with larger corporations.

An effective retirement plan can be a powerful tool for retaining quality employees and recruiting new talent. Maybe now is the time to explore the benefits of starting one.


Chris Moore is a retirement plan sales relationship manager at F&M Trust. He can be reached by calling 717.262.7533.

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