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Eligibility and Participation


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403b Image

Generally, if an employer has a §403(b) plan, all employees must be permitted to make salary reduction contributions.

In addition, all employees must be provided the opportunity to defer a portion of their compensation pursuant to a salary reduction agreement. This is commonly referred to as the "universal availability" requirement. This universal availability rule means that if an employer permits one employee to defer salary into a 403(b) plan, the employer must extend this offer to all employees.

However, certain employees may be excluded from the plan:

  • Employees who will contribute $200 annually or less.
  • Those employees who participate in a 401(k) or governmental 457 plan, or in another 403(b) plan maintained by the employer.
  • Non-resident aliens.
  • Employees who worked less than 1,000 hours in the previous plan year or new employees expected to work less than 1,000 hours in their first 12 months of employment.
  • Students performing services described in section 3121(b)(10).

To determine your eligibility, you should contact your employer directly.

A Roth account option may also be available under your Employer's plans. Roth contributions are made with after tax amounts, but, subject to certain requirements, not taxed when distributed.

Circular 230 Disclaimer - The information contained in this internet web page (including linked pages) concerning Federal tax issues is not intended to (and cannot) be used by anyone to avoid IRS penalties. This communication is intended to support the sale of insurance, annuity and other financial products and services. You should seek advice based on your particular circumstances from an independent tax advisor.

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