A late-1950s law that gave the U.S. Department of Labor regulatory authority over employee benefits plans for the first time. The Welfare and Pension Plans Disclosure Act (WPPDA) mandated that employers and labor unions provide plan descriptions and financial reports to the government, and was intended to make plan sponsors more accountable to participants and beneficiaries for the financial health of the plans.
Explained further: A 1962 amendment to the WPPDA increased regulatory authority over the plans by giving the government enforcement interpretative and investigatory powers. The WPPDA was a precursor to the much broader Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA), which replaced it in 1974. The ERISA adds to the requirements under the WPPDA by establishing standards of fiduciary duty, protecting the plan from mismanagement and increasing participants’ and beneficiaries’ rights.
Definition courtesy of Investopedia