Collective Trusts in Retirement Plans Under Increased ERISA Scrutiny

Compliance Strategies for Establishing Collective Trusts

Recording of a 90-minute premium CLE webinar with Q&A

Conducted on Thursday, June 5, 2008

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Program Materials


Between 2003 and 2006, demand for collective investment trusts in retirement savings plans grew from 32% to 41%. Along with this growth, several lawsuits against ERISA fiduciaries based on the investment in collective investment trusts have been filed, and additional suits are coming.

Retirement plan administrators are adding collective investment trusts to their product offerings because they allow financial institutions to provide more diverse products than SEC-registered mutual funds.

However, plan sponsors and administrators must step back and understand how to properly structure the use of such trusts in retirement plans to comply with ERISA requirements.

Listen as our panel of ERISA and financial services attorneys outlines the legal requirements and regulatory landscape for collective investment trusts and the impact of recent ERISA litigation on collective investment trusts.



  1. Collective investment trusts
    1. Statutory and regulatory framework
    2. Structure, including compensation, disclosure and distribution
    3. Comparison with registered mutual funds
  2. Compliance issues in establishing collective investment trusts
    1. Technical requirements under ERISA
    2. Potential regulatory pitfalls and areas of supervisory focus
  3. Emerging ERISA litigation
    1. Litigation challenging collective trust management and disclosures
    2. Litigation challenging fees borne by ERISA plans invested in collective trusts


The panel reviewed these and other key questions: 

  • How do collective investment trusts compare to registered mutual funds?
  • What are the potential regulatory pitfalls in establishing collective trusts?
  • What are the recent trends in ERISA litigation that are affecting collective trusts?


Thomas J. LaFond
Thomas J. LaFond

Goodwin Procter

He structures and implements investment products and services. He also represents clients before federal and state...  |  Read More

Fleckner, James
James O. Fleckner

Goodwin Procter

Mr. Fleckner is a nationally recognized leader in the field of ERISA litigation and heads the firm’s ERISA...  |  Read More

Linda K. Shore
Linda K. Shore
Mayer Brown

She represents financial services firms and corporate plan sponsors in all areas covered by ERISA and has extensive...  |  Read More

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