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What is a 401(k) Record-Keeper?

The primary purpose of a 401(k) plan record-keeper is to keep track of the plan money.  Record-keepers are also responsible for maintaining the accounting of plan contributions and what they have earned.

Record-keepers track which incoming dollars are which.  All record-keeping function are typically provided online. In addition to tracking individuals’ assets, record-keepers often provide other plan services, which include:

  • Maintaining a web portal to check 401(k) balances and make transfers
  • Printing and mailing account statements to employees
  • Requesting trades and other transactions within participant accounts
  • Producing enrollment and education materials
  • Review operations to ensure compliance with various laws
  • Update processes as regulations change

Choosing a Record-Keeper

In some cases, the company that provides the investment advice will also provide the record-keeping services. However, in other cases, a financial advisory firm will be used to provide the plan participants with investment advice and a plan record-keeping company will be used for the plan record-keeping services.  However, over the last several years, most record-keeping functions can be performed online or even via a mobile app.

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