DOL Opens ESG Door: What Does It Mean for Plan Fiduciaries?


Department of Labor (DOL) Secretary Walsh recently announced final regulations in a blog post titled "Removing Barriers to Considering ESG Factors in Retirement Plan Investments." While the rules open the door to more employer retirement plans taking into account environmental, social, and governance (ESG) factors in investment decisions, fiduciaries still need to be careful to ensure that their fiduciary processes reflect appropriate consideration of ESG factors. The new rules also address how fiduciary standards apply to voting proxies and exercising other shareholder rights with respect to plan investments.