Public School Employees Are Eligible for Two Tax-Favorable Retirement Plans
A 403b and 457 Plans
Both Have Catch-op Options
- The 403(b) 15 year catch-up allows some public-school employees with 15 years of service with the same employer to contribute an extra $3,000 a year for five years.
- One problem with this catch-up is any amounts contributed over $19,000 (basic limit) are credited first against the 15-year rule. So, a teacher who is age fifty or over could use up the fifteen-year catch-up without knowing it
- The 457 plan has a larger catch-up. It allows eligible employees to contribute $37,000 a year for three years before they reach their “normal retirement date.
The 403(b) Options In Your School System
Dover Sherborn Regional School District
- Your school system provides you with a list of 403(b) companies. ↑
- The 457 is different. The city/town usually provides one company.
- Both give you a broad range of investment options.
- You decide what plan to use and the amount that you want to save before taxes from your paycheck
- In 2018, the basic limit is $18,500 and an educator age fifty or over can save an extra $6,000.
- The IRS, however, allows educators to contribute $18,500 to a 403(b) and a 457.*
- The ability to put in the most pre-tax into two retirement plans is unique to the 403(b) and 457.
- School systems should think about eliminating the 15-year catch-up from their 403(b) plan. Especially if there is no system in place to track if the catch-up contribution is from it or the age fifty.
- Any employee who is saving the greatest in a 403(b) and wants to save more money can usually open up a 457 plan.
- Remember, if eligible, you can use the 457 catch-ups with the 403(b) plus the age fifty catch-up making it an excellent option for any educator who wants to defer sick buybacks.
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