The DOL rule may now officially be in place (at least partially), but that does not mean all advisors are following it. In fact, a very ironic thing is going on. All the advisors who were most vehemently against the best interest contract exemption (or BICE) are now being forced to readily adopt it as a way to circumvent the rule. The rule allows for advisors to keep offering advice that is now considered “conflicted” under certain conditions. The upside for the moment is that some of the most onerous reporting requirements will not come into effect until January, making use of the exemptions relatively reasonable. For now, advisors only need to abide by the impartial conduct standards. However, BICE also has a very nasty downside—it exposes advisors to class action lawsuits that could lead to some very lofty legal expenses.
FINSUM: There is window here where using the BICE is superior to other methods (like PTE 84-24), but that window will close in January barring a revision of the rule.