ERISA Enforcement: Mandate for a Single Agency

In Part I, this Article reviews the aspects of pensions that justify the attention of Congress during consideration of budgets and the federal deficit. Part II documents the initial administrative problems created by the congressional compromise that divided administrative responsibility between the Department of Labor and the Internal Revenue Service. Although Reorganization Plan No. 4 solved some of the initial problems, the remaining problems are not amenable to resolution within a system of responsibility divided between separate agencies. The specific problems associated with enforcement are discussed in Part III, which identifies the total failure of enforcement as a major threat to the future income security of participants in private pension systems. The establishment of a single agency, with the transfer of responsibility and funding from the Department of Labor and the Internal Revenue Service, is necessary to solve these problems and ensure adequate enforcement of the provisions of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974.