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By Pam Leibfried
If you participate in a workplace 401(k), you are probably aware that the contribution limit specified by the IRS is $18,000 (a $500 increase from last year’s limit). But if you are over 50, you are also eligible to save an additional $6,000 per year in “catch-up contributions” to boost your retirement savings as you approach retirement age.
According to IRS guidelines, if you are over 50, you are eligible to make catch-up contributions to your 401(k) or IRA, provided that you do not exceed the IRS’ IRA income phase-out limits. Please note that although the vast majority of employer-offered plans include the option of making catch-up contributions, they are not required to include catch-up contributions. If you are relying solely on a workplace 401(k) for your retirement savings, you should check your plan to confirm that catch-up contributions are offered. You can also check your plan to see if catch-up contributions are matched.
If you turn 50 this year and do not exceed the IRS' IRA income phase-out limits, you are eligible to make catch-up contributions throughout the year, even if your 50th birthday is December 31, 2015. If you are 49, are currently contributing the maximum of $18,000 to your 401(k) and want to contribute the maximum $6,000 catch-up amount for 2015, you don’t have to wait until your fiftieth birthday to start making your catch-up contributions. Now is the time to up your 401(k) contribution percentage so that your contributions are spread evenly over all your 2015 paychecks. Paycheck reductions of $500 per month will hurt a lot less than having even larger chunks of your paycheck withheld later in the year.
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The LPL Financial Registered Representatives associated with this site may discuss and/or transact securities business with residents of all 50 states.
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