The Investment Fiduciary role entails a formally documented process for the initial selection and ongoing monitoring of investment options in your retirement plan.  

Their are three general types of Investment Fiduciary.  Historically, most advisors skipped their sponsors over #1 and #2 and directly onto the "Do It Yourself" category.  

Level 1--  Directed 3(38) Investment Manager.  A 3(38) Investment Manager accepts fiduciary responsibility to prudently perform the Investment Fiduciary role.  Only the 3(38) Investment Manager signs for investment choices and only the 3(38) Investment Manager is responsible for the investment selections, monitoring and workload.  The Sponsor is responsible to prudently select and monitor the 3(38) Investment Manager.  

Level 2--  Shared 3(21) Investment Advisor.  Both the Sponsor and a 3(21) Investment Advisor are liable for the Investment Fiduciary work.   A 3(21) Investment Advisor generally guides the investment selection and monitoring process working with the sponsor for each decision.  Since you and your 3(21) Investment Advisor both sign for investment decisions, you both share full fiduciary responsibility.  

Level 3-- Do It Yourself with support from a Financial Advisor.  .  You sign all investment decisions yourself.  Your investment product or financial advisor gives you some ideas on what investments to choose.  However, they generally have no specialization or legal responsibility for your choices.  Only your signature is on investment decisions so you are the sole responsible fiduciary.  


As an Accredited Investment Fiduciary Analyst, we are uniquely specialized to assist you as a coach for the do it yourself sponsor, a partner at the 3(21) level or a trusted Investment Manager at the 3(38) level.