“Universal, Secure, Adaptable (USA) Retirement Funds Act” by Senator Harkin

Early this year, Senator Harkin proposed the USA Retirement Funds Act as seventy-five million working Americans do not have a retirement plan, and half of all Americans have less than $10,000 in savings.

“Our country is facing a growing retirement crisis, and it’s only going to get worse unless we take action,” Harkin said. “The USA Retirement Funds Act offers a common-sense solution to the retirement crisis by giving the 75 million people without a retirement plan at the workplace the opportunity to earn a safe, portable, and secure pension benefit for life.

The key features of USA Retirement Funds include:

  • Universal Coverage: USA Retirement Funds would be available to everyone, including the more than 61 million people without access to a workplace retirement plan and the 14.5 million people who are self-employed.
  • Automatic Enrollment: Employees would be automatically enrolled at a rate of 6 percent per year, but could choose to raise, lower, or stop their contributions.
  • Secure Lifetime Income: Benefits would be paid monthly for life, and participants would be shielded from market volatility and other risks.
  • Lower Costs: Pooled, professional management and risk sharing will reduce the cost of retirement by up to 50 percent.
  • Portability: People would be able to take their benefit with them as they change employers.
  • Simple and Easy for Businesses: Small businesses can easily participate and would not have to take on risk or undue administrative burden.

As the mid term election draw near, one wonders if this or a similar legislation will occur during the lame duck session.  We will keep you posted.

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“A great pleasure in life
is doing what people say
you cannot do.”

— Walter Gagehot