EBSA Authorizes Team America Fiduciary Appointment

March 2, 2004 (PLANSPONSOR.com) - The US Department of Labor (DoL) has obtained a court order authorizing Team America, Inc., to appoint an independent fiduciary to manage and terminate the defunct company's 401(k) retirement savings plans.

>Per the court order, the Worthington, Ohio-based company will appoint Aspen Pension Administrators, Inc to manage the plans, distribute the assets to participants and terminate the plans.   This after the plans were left without a fiduciary when Ted Crawford, company president and trustee of the plans, resigned from the company on September 25, 2003, according to a news release.

>After Crawford left, Team America’s plan became an orphan plan, a term used to denote a plan abandoned by all fiduciaries designated to manage and operate them and their assets.   As a result, participants do not have a way to transact business and communicate with the plan, a violation of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA).  

>Team America, Inc was a professional employer organization that leased 7,802 full-time and 1,401 part-time employees to 1,053 client organizations in 32 states.   More than 5,000 participants were covered by the four plans, which had approximately $30 million in assets as of September 30, 2003.

“The department’s action will ensure that the plan’s participants receive the benefits promised by the company,” Joseph Menez, director of the Cincinnati regional office of the Department of Labor’s Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA), said in the release.