DOL Secures 401(k) Funds from Government Contractor

June 18, 2012 ( – The former CEO of a defunct Southern California electrical contractor has agreed to restore more than a half-million dollars in 401(k) funds to employees.

Mark Dell Donne, who served as a fiduciary of Aliso Viejo-based Journey Electrical Technologies Inc.’s retirement plan, agreed to restore $570,983 in 401(k) funds, to settle a Department of Labor (DOL) lawsuit. He has already restored $98,748 to the plan’s accounts.

The DOL’s lawsuit resulted from an investigation by its Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA), which determined that between January 2004 and March 2008, some of the employees’ wages for work performed on public works projects were deposited in the company’s general funds instead of the workers’ 401(k) plan accounts as required under the government contracts. Employee elective 401(k) contributions and participant loan payments also were not forwarded for deposit into plan accounts, in violation of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA).

The plan had 105 participants and a balance of more than $1.9 million as of Dec. 31, 2010, the latest information available.

“We are pleased to be able to secure these retirement funds for the company’s former employees,” said Phyllis C.  Borzi, assistant secretary of labor for employee benefits security. “Employees working on government construction or service contracts are often unaware of the benefits they are entitled to under prevailing wage laws, including fringe benefit payments to their employee benefit plans. Plan fiduciaries have a legal responsibility to ensure that this money is properly deposited in employee accounts.”