The Department of Labor regulation requires that the auditor:
(1) be independent,
(2) have appropriate technical training or expertise and proficiency,
(3) make such representations in the written audit report, and
(4) present in the audit report specific findings regarding compliance with the regulation.
The DOL has stated that the selection of the auditor is a fiduciary act and therefore must be carried out in a manner consistent with the prudence requirements of ERISA section 404(a)(1), taking into account the nature and scope of the audit and the expertise and experience necessary to conduct such an audit. The audit itself does not cause an auditor to be a fiduciary under ERISA.
“The Ingham Group uses our CEFEX certification to articulate our fundamental belief
in total disclosure and best fiduciary practices. We go out of our way to educate
our clients and prospects on the importance of sound fiduciary practices. We believe
this certification should be a standard requirement in the selection of Investment
Advisors, much like how SAS70 has become required in the recordkeeping industry.
CEFEX certification has been instrumental to Ingham Group maintaining its client
base and opening many new opportunities. Ingham group has experienced a 30% growth
in AUM in the past year, thanks to our positioning, and proven track record.”
Ken Ingham, AIFA, President and CEO, Ingham Group, Miami, FL
“Slavic Mutual Funds Management Corporation has won many RFQ’s recently, and we can attribute our success to be due in part to our CEFEX certification. Since Slavic operates as a broker/dealer, an investment manager, a TPA and an advisor, we also believe the CEFEX process has helped improve the accountabilities within our organization. The better delineations between our disciplines has helped sustain improved corporate performance.”
John Slavic, President, Slavic Mutual Funds Management Corporation, Boca Raton, FL
“Unified Trust Company, NA became CEFEX registered in October 2006. Unified sought registration as an important independent assessment of our commitment to follow a prudent, consistent and standardized process based on Fiduciary Best Practices for Investment Advisors as promulgated by CEFEX. This independent verification means our clients, and those considering our services, can be confident that critical components of an investment strategy have been properly implemented. This can be especially important for retirement plan sponsors in today’s environment of increasing complaints and/or lawsuits alleging fiduciary misconduct. Being able to show adherence to this independent standard has given Unified a distinct advantage when competing with other investment advisors. Successful retirement outcome is the cornerstone of Unified’s philosophy. As a fully discretionary trustee, we believe a prudent best practices approach improves investment outcomes for our clients and increases their financial goal success probability. Progress towards success can and should be measured. We have done extensive research on success probabilities and have been able to show that implementing the prudent best practices necessary for CEFEX registration improves the probability of success. Unified believes registration is more than a differentiator in the sales process; rather it will make a true positive difference in the most important consideration, successful outcome. In the five months since Unified became CEFEX registered, assets under management have grown by 12.5%. In that same period, the S&P has added just over 5%. While the difference is likely due to many factors, we feel that our outcomes based approach based on prudent best practices is the overarching reason. The CEFEX registration is the distinctive sign to the marketplace that Unified Trust Co., N.A. unquestionably follows the highest fiduciary best practices standards.”
Dr. Gregory Kasten, MD, MBA, CFP, CPC, AIFA, CEO Unified Trust Company, NA.
“ The CEFEX Analyst’s assessment of our firm’s custodian function was thorough and produced many useful benefits to us. We have a much better appreciation of our clients’ perspectives of us. The CEFEX experience has caused us to alter the way we tell our firm’s service delivery message. Our CEFEX certification has won more business for us than we even hoped.”
Denys Pearce, Managing Director, Plan B Trustees Limited, Perth Australia.
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