The Senate-approved pension bill landed on President Bush's desk last week, and is expected to be signed into law soon.
Lawmakers voted 93-5 to clear the measure Thursday, which is the first major rewrite of pension legislation in 30 years. Meant to strengthen retirement security and educate millions of people, the bill closes loopholes that allow companies to claim their pensions are financially sound when, in fact, many plans carry huge liabilities.
The bill would allow 401(k) administrators to offer investment advice directly, but the recommendations must be based on a computer model that an independent advisor audits. The bill also encourages employers to automatically enroll workers in their 401(k) plan, and it would make higher contribution limits to both 401(k)s and IRAs permanent, and make the tax incentives in 529 plans permanent, as well.