How SECURE 2.0 Could Impact Workplace Emergency Savings and Inclusive Financial Wellness
To address the implications and opportunities of new legislation for emergency savings, Commonwealth, and Employee Benefit News, with support from BlackRock’s Emergency Savings Initiative, hosted a webinar on May 17 at 2pm ET, How SECURE 2.0 Could Impact Workplace Emergency Savings and Inclusive Financial Wellness.
In December, Congress passed the SECURE 2.0 Act of 2022, which included The Emergency Savings Act. With the passage of this Act, Congress recognized that emergency savings are critical to improving workers’ financial security.
The Act contains two non-mandated options for offering emergency savings through workplace retirement plan offerings, including allowing companies to automatically enroll employees into an emergency savings program and permitting workers to make penalty-free early withdrawals of up to $1,000.
Set to be enacted in January 2024, the emergency savings provisions of SECURE 2.0 open the door for employers to consider offering emergency savings solutions to workforces now. Yet, critical questions remain for HR and benefits leaders, including how to approach the offerings for in-plan and out-of-plan solutions, as well as ensuring inclusivity for employees earning low and moderate incomes.
The webinar was moderated by Lynn Gresham, former Editor-in-Chief, Employee Benefit News. The panelists represented three sectors: a nonprofit, an employer, and a recordkeeper.
- Nick Maynard, Senior Vice President, Commonwealth
Nick is a workplace emergency savings expert, who is working to operationalize the Emergency Savings Act in SECURE 2.0 with employers, recordkeepers, and payroll firms.
- Tom Armstrong, Vice President of Customer Analytics and Insight, Voya Financial, and Head of Voya’s Behavioral Finance Institute for Innovation
Tom offered context on how organizations like Voya, a leading recordkeeper, are looking at emergency savings offerings within the context of current retirement plan structures.
- Nancy Weis, Senior Director of Retirement, Benefits Financial Reporting, and Relocation, AutoNation
Nancy shared broadly AutoNation’s multi-pronged approach designed with Commonwealth and BlackRock’s Emergency Savings Initiative, which was put in place for its employees in late 2022. Specifically, she spoke about the company’s focus on inclusivity when designing the offerings.
Employers and recordkeepers have a critical role to play in operationalizing the emergency savings provisions in SECURE 2.0. Listen to the recording where you’ll hear the panelists’ perspectives and actionable takeaways on the following topics:
- How employers and benefits professionals can make sense of these emergency savings provisions in the context of current retirement plan structures
- The potential feature options and how employers should assess them
- Whether employees earning low and moderate incomes will want these types of solutions
- How this opportunity impacts the intersection of diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) and worker financial security
Former Editor and Chief
Employee Benefit News
Vice President, Customer Analytics and Insight, Head of Voya’s Behavioral Finance Institute for Innovation
Senior Vice President
Senior Director, Retirement, Benefits Financial Reporting and Relocation