What Is A 457 Retirement Plan


Texa$aver 401 / 457 Program For Active Employees

What Is a 457 Retirement Plan?

Its never too soon to plan for a more financially secure retirement. As you begin to plan for retirement, be sure to make good use of tax-advantaged savings like the Texa$aver program. With the Texa$aver voluntary retirement savings program, you can increase your personal retirement savings to bridge the financial gap between your pension and Social Security.You already contributed to the ERS retirement fund, with the State and the agency you worked for also contributing on your behalf, but your ERS annuity may replace only about 50% of your salary when you retire. Your State of Texas retirement plan does not include automatic cost-of-living adjustments . During retirement, a Texa$aver account can help you weather inflation and increased medical expenses as you age.

How Do I Manage My 457 Retirement Plan After I Retire

When you retire, you have a variety of options for distributions.

  • You can withdraw part or all of your 457 plan funds when you retire or if you leave your job before retirement.
  • Keep in mind that a distribution of all of your funds from your 457 plan will likely be fully taxable.
  • A 457 can be rolled over into any other retirement account such as a traditional IRA, 401, 403, or another 457 governmental plan.
  • You can contribute to both a 457 plan and a Roth IRA if your earned income is at least equal to your IRA contribution.
  • All money withdrawn from a 457 is taxable as ordinary income in the year its removed.
  • There is no 10% penalty for withdrawing money before you turn 59.5, as long as you are retiring or ending your employment.
  • Withdrawing funds before age 59.5 may be subject to tax penalties.
  • The minimum distribution must be taken at age 72.

Governmental 457 Plan Withdrawal Requirement And Distributions

Typically, a distribution from a governmental 457 plan can occur only as a result of a specific triggering event.

  • Participant separates from service
  • Participant reaches age 70½ or age 72
  • Unforeseeable emergencies
  • Plan termination
  • Divorce when a qualified domestic relations order is issued

Depending upon plan provisions, it may be possible to distribute account balances of less than $5,000 , where the participant has not actively contributed to the plan for two years.

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Prioritizing Saving For Retirement

401, IRA, 403, or 457 no matter which you choose, saving for retirement should always be a top priority. Saving as much as you can for retirement can help you to take advantage of compounding interest and grow your savings throughout your working career.

If you do choose a 457 retirement plan, its important to remember the differences between governmental and non-governmental plans. In a governmental plan, money is held in a trust and funds can be rolled into other savings accounts. In a non-governmental plan, the money is controlled by your employer and funds can only move within other non-governmental plans. Non-governmental plans are inherently riskier since your plan could be trouble if your employer goes under.

In many cases, you dont have to pick just one type of retirement account. In fact, taking advantage of multiple different types of accounts can be a great way to balance out your investments and the amount of taxable income youll have during retirement.

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Tips For Your Retirement Plan

Hartzman Tax &  Fiduciary: City of Greensboro 457 Plan Proposal
  • Planning for retirement is a long and arduous process, so the help of a professional could be valuable. Finding a qualified financial advisor doesnt have to be hard. SmartAssets free tool matches you with up to three financial advisors who serve your area, and you can interview your advisor matches at no cost to decide which one is right for you. If youre ready to find an advisor who can help you achieve your financial goals, get started now.
  • Most retirees would have trouble living off of Social Security payments alone. However, Social Security affords you extra income that can help round out your overall retirement funds. SmartAssets Social Security calculator will give you an estimate as to what youll receive from the government in retirement.

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Employer Matches For 457 Plans Are Rare

State and local government employers rarely provide matches to employees. With 401 and 403 plans, the annual contribution limit applies only to employee deferrals, not any money matched by the employer. However, if a government employer does make a contribution to a 457 plan, it counts toward the total allowable limit for the year.

For instance, if a local government employer contributes $1,500 in 2022, the employee may contribute only $19,000. However, a government employer could theoretically kick in the entire yearly limit if it wants.

What Is A 457b

A 457 plan is an employer-sponsored, IRS-sanctioned, tax-deferred savings account that allows you to make pre-tax contributions towards your retirement. You may have also heard of a 457 plan referred to as a deferred compensation plan.

A 457 retirement plan is similar to a 401 or 403 plan, in that a 457 plan is offered through your employer, and your contributions are taken from your paycheck on a pre-tax basis, which ultimately lowers your taxable income.

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Withdrawals From 457 Plans

When it comes to tapping into the account early, 457 plans make it harder to withdraw money in an emergency, though it may still be possible to take a loan, depending on the plans provisions.

A 457 plan can only make hardship distributions if the participant has no other resources available, says Jimmy Williamson, a senior partner and CPA at Alabama-based MDA Professional Group, P.C. Then, if they took a distribution from the 457, they would have to stop making deferrals for a certain period of time.

Also, to qualify for a hardship withdrawal, the funds must be not only for an emergency, but an unforeseeable one.

In the 401 plan, if you needed money to buy a house or to pay tuition for a dependent, you could do that, Pizzano says. But in the 457 plan, those types of foreseeable withdrawals are not allowed. It has to be something catastrophic, like a fire without adequate insurance to replace your house.

Still, if your plan allows it, you can access some of your money via a loan. The maximum a participant can borrow is 50 percent of the vested account balance or $50,000, whichever is less. However, those with an account balance less than $10,000 may borrow up to 100 percent, if the 457 plan allows it. The loan must be repaid within five years, and the participant must make payments on the balance at least quarterly.

How The 457 Plan Works

457 Retirement Plan EXPLAINED

A 457 is similar to a 401 in how it allows workers to put away money into a special retirement account that provides tax advantages, letting you grow your savings tax-deferred over time.

Its very similar in that you can only defer a certain dollar amount each year, and the amount you can defer is linked to the cost-of-living , as the 401 is, says Dominick Pizzano, a New Jersey-based employee benefits consultant at Milliman, an actuarial and consulting firm.

The employee contribution limit is $20,500 for 2022 for workers under age 50, which is in line with 401 contributions. Also similar to the 401 is one of the catch-up provisions that allows workers aged 50 and up to contribute an additional $6,500 each year.

And like the 401 program, which has both a pre-tax and after-tax Roth version, 457 plans may also offer these two flavors of the retirement plan.

The major difference between the two? The pre-tax plan allows you to contribute money and take a tax deduction today, and then at retirement youll pay taxes when you take money out of the account. In contrast, the Roth version of the 457 allows you to put in money after-tax paying taxes on the contributions today but in exchange you wont have to pay tax on any withdrawals at retirement.

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What Are The Disadvantages Of A 457 Retirement Plan

Here are some disadvantages of a 457 plan:

  • There are contribution limits on 457 retirement plans.

  • 457 retirement plans typically offer limited investment choices.

  • 457 plans are typically only available to highly paid executives.

  • Like a 401 plan, if you have a 457 plan and you quit your job or get fired before your money is vested in other words, before you own 100% of the employer contributions to your account, based on a timeline set by the employer you risk losing the money that is not yet vested in your 457 plan.

  • What Are The Contribution Limits For A 457 Plan

    According to the IRS, employers or employees can contribute annually the lesser of:

    • 100% of the employees includible compensation, or

    • Up to the IRC 402 limit

    Employees aged 50 and over may make annual catch-up contributions . This allows participants to contribute additional money three years before they retire.

    Catch-up contributions must not exceed:

    • Twice the annual limit , or

    • The basic annual limit plus the amount of basic limits not used in prior years

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    Withdrawing From A 457 Plan

    Employees should have a plan for taking withdrawals from their account both to manage the tax bill and to provide for their future needs. For guidance, you may contact your MissionSquare Retirement representative.

    To request a withdrawal from a MissionSquare Retirement account, employees should log into their account to see if their employer allows online withdrawals. Or, complete and submit the forms in the 457 Plan Benefit Withdrawal Packet. To obtain a copy, contact MissionSquare Plan Services.

    Changes With The Small Business Jobs Act

    How Does a 457(b) Retirement Plan Differ from a 401(k)?

    The Small Business Jobs Act of 2010 enabled 457 plans to include Roth accounts, which were previously only available only in 401 and 403 plans. This change took effect January 1, 2011. Contributions to Roth accounts are made on an after-tax basis, but distributions of both principal and earnings are generally tax-free.

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    When Can 457 Plan Be Withdrawn

    You can withdraw your 457 contributions at any time without a penalty when you reach the retirement age.

    However, if you take out the earnings before age 59 1/2, you will have to pay an extra ten percent tax on those withdrawals as well as interest.

    Also, even though you wonât need to pay any taxes or penalties for withdrawing your contributions, you do have to pay taxes on any earnings that are part of the withdrawal.

    You must start withdrawing from your 457 plan when you reach 70 1/2 years old unless you are still employed by the tax-filing organization that sponsors the 457 plan.

    If this is not the case, you can continue to defer withdrawals until you retire.

    How Do 457b Plans Work

    457 plans are generally available for state and local government employees, as well as certain tax-exempt nonprofits. These plans are very similar to other types of employer-offered retirement accounts. Employees can make contributions up to the annual limit, invest these funds, and grow their retirement nest egg.

    Like many other retirement savings accounts, contributions to a 457 account are made pre-tax, which can lower your overall taxable income for the year. However, this does mean that youll need to pay tax on distributions you receive in retirement.

    One great feature of 457 plans is that you dont have to wait until you are 59 ½ to start withdrawing contributions. Instead, you can begin withdrawing funds whenever you stop working at your employer. This unique element makes it a great account for retirees to draw from at the very start of their golden years .

    Pro-Tip: The flexibility can also lead to a potentially major tax issue with non-governmental 457bs. Make sure you read the fine print and understand the withdrawal rules after separation from employment. Some plans may force you to withdraw the entire amount in a very, very short window, leading to a difficult tax situation.

    For other accounts like a 401, you cant withdraw any funds before 59 ½ without incurring 10% early withdrawal fees, as well as income tax on the distributions.

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    How Much Tax Do You Pay On A 457 Withdrawal

    All withdrawals made from a tax-deferred 457 are taxable as income, regardless of the participantâs age. Itâs important to be aware that because distributions are taxed as regular income they can possibly push you into a higher income tax bracket if youâre not watching carefully.

    To avoid a huge tax bill, avoid withdrawing your entire account balance all at once. If you want to withdraw your money do it incrementally to keep your tax burden in check. If youâre 59 ½ or donât believe youâll need the money until then, you can roll over the balance to an IRA without any tax liability. Remember that once itâs there it loses the penalty-free early withdrawal benefit.

    Also, while rare, a Roth 457 allows you to make contributions on an after-tax basis and pay no taxes on qualifying withdrawals.

    Work With Your Financial Advisor

    457 Retirement Plan | 457b Explained

    A 457 plan can become the cornerstone of your personal retirement savings program, providing the foundation for your future financial security. Consult with your plan administrator or financial advisor to help you determine how your employers 457 plan could help make your financial future moresecure.

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    North Carolina 457 Deferred Compensation Plan

    The North Carolina 457 Deferred Compensation plan is sponsored by the State of North Carolina and governed by the Department of the State Treasurer. The plan administrator for this program is Prudential. The 457 is a supplemental retirement plan that allows employees to set aside payroll-deducted contributions on a pre or after-tax basis.

    Pre or after-tax contributions may be invested in fixed and variable accounts under this plan. Account contributions and earnings are required by law to be held in a separate trust for the exclusive benefit of participants and their beneficiaries.

    All permanent and temporary employees who are subject to FICA withholdings are eligible to participate .

    Due to plan rules with Prudential, you cannot enroll or change contributions to the Prudential NC 401k through ConnectCarolina. You must use the Prudential Portal at or you can print out forms from the Pudential site and return them to the UNC OHR Benefits Office by scan/email at [email protected] or by fax at 919-962-6010.

    Contribution Amounts

    The annual contribution limit to the 457 plan is $20,500. You may be eligible for a catch-up contribution of an additional $6,500 if you are 50 or older, or will turn 50 during the current calendar year. For employees age 50 or older the maximum contribution amount is $27,000.

    Coordination with other Supplemental Plans


    Vesting & Loans

    Retirement Benefits & Distribution Options

    Who Is A 457 Retirement Plan For

    Unlike a traditional 401, a 457 plan is specifically for state and local government employees, as well as certain nonprofit employees.

    Here are some types of employers that might offer a 457 plan:

    • Hospitals

    • Trade associations

    • Nonprofits

    While not all of the employers that offer 457 plans fall into the above categories, many of them do. The two types of 457 plans are the 457 plan, which is the most popular, and the 457 plan.

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    How To Roll Over A 457 Account

    A 457 can be rolled over into any other retirement account. Heres the IRS chart that explains what types of accounts can be rolled into what.

    If youre looking to complete a rollover, pick a new plan and ask the new provider to give you tips on how to initiate the rollover. Your new provider will be able to help you navigate the bureaucracy involved with getting your money out and rolled over. More importantly, by doing this, you should be able to avoid all tax penalties.

    Do 457 Plans Have Rmds

    How 403(b) and 457 Plans Work Together

    RMD stands for required minimum distribution. This means you must make withdrawals from your retirement plan account each year once you reach the age of 72. The amount of the distribution is based on your life expectancy and the value of your account at the time of the distribution. If you do not take the required minimum distribution, you could get charged a penalty.

    Like other accounts, 457 plans do have RMDs. If you plan to keep working past 72, speak to your employer about whether RMDs will apply to you.

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    Early Withdrawal Penalties And Exceptions

    A 457 plan allows greater flexibility in withdrawing money than 401 plans. For instance, you can avoid the 10 percent penalty on early withdrawals if you do so after youve left your employer.

    But you may still incur the penalty if you are still working for your employer and wish to withdraw your money for some foreseeable expenses, such as paying off credit card debt.

    The rules governing 457 plans do allow you to withdraw money for certain unforeseeable emergencies.

    Situations That Allow Early 457 Plan Withdrawals Without Penalties

    • Funeral expenses for your spouse or dependents
    • Illness or accident involving you, your beneficiary or your beneficiarys spouse or dependents
    • Imminent foreclosure or eviction from your primary residence
    • Property loss caused by natural disaster not covered by your or your beneficiarys homeowners insurance
    • Unforeseen medical and prescription expenses
    • Other major unforeseeable hardships resulting from events beyond your control

    Even in these circumstances, you may have to prove that the unforeseeable emergency expense is not covered by your insurance, selling other assets or by using money youd otherwise be contributing to the 457 plan.

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