401k Contribution Catch-up Limits

If you are behind in reaching your retirement goals and are over fifty years old, you may want to make catch-up 401K contributions. Most employers allow this feature and will even match your catch-up contributions as long as the match does not exceed six percent of your income. By making catch-up contributions, you can save more from every paycheck to ensure you retire with enough money.

Limits

Currently, the 401k contribution limit is $16,500 per year. If you are over fifty and are eligible for catch-up contributions, then you can add $5,500 to that number.

Employer Match Limits

An employer often matches per dollar you contribute. Perhaps they match 50 cents for every dollar. There is usually a limit imposed on the employer of 6 percent, meaning they cannot contribute more than 6 percent of your salary. They will match on the money in your catch-up contribution as long as it does not exceed their limits.

Example

If you are over fifty and make $100,000 per year, your savings will look like this:

  • Regular contribution of $16,500
  • Catch-up contribution of $5,500
  • Employer match of no more than six percent: up to $6,000
  • Total allowed contributions: $28,000 per year


Catch Up Contribution



As you approach retirement, you may increase contributions to a retirement plan through the catch up contribution provision. Under this provision, you can add additional pre-tax funds after the annual maximum. You must be at least 50 years old to be eligible for the option. About 90 percent of all retirement plans offer some type of catch up contribution provision. All require the contribution be made as a paycheck deduction, and none require your employer to match your catch up contribution. To determine your catch up contribution eligibility, contact your plan provider in the year you turn 50 years of age.  

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