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NWPS provides retirement plan services for over 20 Tribal and Alaska Native Corporation plans. These include a mix of Enterprise 401(k) plans (subject to ERISA) and Government 401(k) and other DC plans which are not subject to ERISA. We also administer Minor’s Trusts, Council Plans and Per Capita Rabbi Trusts. Our Tribal clients have special requirements and characteristics which distinguish them from other types of clients.

Tribal Sovereignty

This refers to the right of Tribes and Alaska Natives to govern themselves. The U.S. Constitution recognizes Indian tribes as distinct governments and they have, with a few exceptions, the same powers as federal and state governments to regulate their internal affairs. NWPS understands how to work with our Tribal clients, their advisors and attorneys in a way that protects their tribal sovereignty with respect to contracting, plan design, ERISA and other dimensions.

Plan Operations

Typically our Tribal and Alaska Native Corporation clients will have a combination of plan types (Enterprise, Government, Minors Trusts, etc.) each of which has its own operating, compliance, recordkeeping and reporting requirements. In addition, many of our Tribal clients have 401(k) plans with distinct businesses, some government and some for profit. NWPS can accommodate the variety of plan types and operational requirements to support our Tribal and Native Corporation clients and help Tribes maintain compliance with ERISA when necessary and maintain their sovereign ERISA exemption when it’s not.

Details Matter

NWPS has years of experience working for Alaska Tribal and Native Corporation plans. We understand the complexity of these organizations and the imperative to protect Tribal Sovereignty while providing complex and customized services. For example, many of our clients have fisheries income. By definition fisheries income is not subject to income tax, so it should never be included as a compensation source for a qualified plan which would make it taxable on distribution. However, some of our tribal clients have adopted provisions to treat fisheries 401(k) deferrals as Roth 401(k), allowing participants to avoid taxation but still participate

Experience & Respect

Over the years of working with these client, we have learned the importance of listening carefully to what our clients are telling us, to respect each clients’ unique culture and to propose informed, specific solutions to help them achieve their goals. We listen first.