US Retirement Legislation and Regulation Bulletin: Fourth Quarter 2022

On December 29, the SECURE 2.0 Act was enacted as Division T of the Consolidated Appropriations Act (CAA), 2023 (H.R. 2617). SECURE 2.0 is the culmination of significant efforts by numerous retirement champions in Congress to assemble a large, bipartisan retirement package that expands upon the changes made by the SECURE Act of 2019. Although stakeholders were confident that a final SECURE 2.0 bill would be completed by the end of 2022, it was less clear that congressional leadership would agree to attach the package to a “must-pass” bill that would provide a path to enactment. It wasn’t until the text of the CAA was released in the early morning hours of December 20 that the retirement industry had confirmation that SECURE 2.0 had been included in the spending bill.

With SECURE 2.0 now enacted, stakeholders are turning their attention to digesting the nearly 100 provisions. This Quarterly Bulletin provides an overview of several of the SECURE 2.0 provisions that will be of greater interest to those sponsoring or working with retirement plans and Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs). Also discussed below is the Biden administration’s final Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) rule, which was released in November 2022 and remains an important development not to be overshadowed by SECURE 2.0.


As expected, the SECURE 2.0 Act closely resembles the provisions that made up three key bills: (1) the House-passed Securing a Strong Retirement Act (SSRA) of 2022 (H.R. 2954), (2) the Senate Finance Committee’s Enhancing American Retirement Now (EARN) Act (S. 4808), and (3) the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee’s Retirement Improvement and Savings Enhancement to Supplement Healthy Investments for the Nest Egg (RISE & SHINE) Act (S. 4353). In some cases, the final provisions in SECURE 2.0 are identical to a provision that was included in the House, Finance, and/or HELP bills. In other cases, generally modest changes were made, or compromises were reached regarding differences among the predecessor bills. Only a handful of provisions that were included in a predecessor bill did not make it into the SECURE 2.0 Act, and only one provision (regarding 529 plans) was newly added to the mix. Below is an overview of several of the key changes SECURE 2.0 made.