The purpose of the Department of Labor's fiduciary rule is to prevent the $17 billion a year investors pay in exorbitant fees.
The key provisions of the fiduciary rule will take effect on April 10, 2017, with a transition period through January 1, 2018. During that time, the last of the detailed disclosures, policies and procedures must be put in place. The fiduciary rule is a big win for all investors, and I am optimistic that the financial advice industry will improve as a result. Serving as chief compliance officer of a registered investment advisor that provides fee-only wealth management, I am so excited to see the word "fiduciary" get all the attention it deserves.
When the rule becomes effective, all financial advisors will be required to recommend what is in the best interests of clients when they offer guidance on 401(k) plan assets, individual retirement accounts or other qualified funds saved for retirement.
The fiduciary ruling is a victory for investors, but the fine print still applies, and I believe you must be aware of everything that's involved.