Deferred Compensation Plan - 457(b)
The University of Alaska provides a voluntary, supplemental retirement plan through the Deferred Compensation Plan, also known as a 457(b) account. This account offers executive employees the opportunity to make additional tax-deferred contributions beyond the maximum amounts allowed by the 403(b) and outside their required contributions to their respective retirement plans (either PERS, TRS, or ORP). The 457(b) is available through TIAA only.
Executives Contributing the Maximum to the 403(b)
The 457(b) is only available to executive employees who have the intent to contribute the maximum annual amount, including any eligible catch up amounts, to the 403(b). More information on 403(b) can be found on our 403(b) webpage.
*Please note this is not the same as the Division of Retirement and Benefit (DRB) deferred compensation plan available in Empower Retirement for PERS and TRS DC members. UA opted out of the DRB deferred compensation plan.
First - Enroll in the 403(b) and Contribute the Maximum
Eligible executive employees must establish a 403(b) account and contribute the maximum amount, including any catch up amounts, before becoming eligible to enroll in a 457(b). More information on 403(b) can be found on our 403(b) webpage.
Employees Manage All Aspects of Account
While UA allows you to contribute pre-tax dollars to a 457(b) through payroll deduction, the management of the account lies entirely with the employee - including managing maximum contribution limits.
UA Cannot Provide Financial Advice
Executive employees are encouraged to speak with a financial adviser before opening a 457(b) account. The UA Benefits team is not able to provide financial planning advice.
Contribution Limits Set by IRS
Contribution limits are set by the IRS each calendar year.
For calendar year 2023, the contribution limit is $22,500.
For calendar year 2024, the contribution limit is $23,000.
If you are over the age of 50, you are eligible to contribute an additional $7,500 catch up amount bringing the total to $30,000.
Making Changes to your 457(b)
Employees can start, stop, and change their 457(b) at any time.
Name Beneficiaries with the Provider
It is the employee's responsibility to maintain accurate beneficiary records with their managing fund sponsor. Contact your managing fund sponsor or login to your account to update/review your beneficiary designations.
When Can Funds be Accessed?
Upon termination of all employment, employees may request a lump sum distribution, roll funds over into another qualified plan or IRA, or leave the funds with TIAA. Contact TIAA by visiting the TIAA-CREF website upon your separation to receive paperwork and additional information about managing your account. Special considerations may apply; discuss your financial assets and retirement plan with a financial planner. Financial planners can help you map out and prepare for your retirement. The UA Benefits team is not able to provide financial planning advice. As you are preparing for retirement, please review our offboarding webpage which provides detailed information on separating from the university.
Applying for Retirement
- A 457(b) has a few different options available for retirement withdraws. Please contact your financial planner prior to your retirement to discuss your options.
- To initiate your desired retirement, contact your provider directly for the paperwork required for the action you are wishing to take.
- Complete and submit the paperwork to UA benefits via fax at 907-450-8201 or via secured email at email@example.com. Remember - these documents have sensitive personal information included. Be sure to send all documents password protected or securely via fax to ensure your personally identifiable information is protected.
- UA Benefits will complete the employer portion of the fund sponsors form and return it to the fund sponsor directly.
Actions for Employees Separating but Not Retiring
If you are separating from the university but are not retiring, there are a few different considerations for your 457(b). The university also has an offboarding webpage which provides detailed information on separating from the university.
- You may take no action and leave all funds in your 457(b).
- You may rollover your vested funds into another qualified tax-free retirement account such as an IRA, or you can rollover your vested funds into a new employer's eligible retirement account.
UA Cannot Provide Financial Advice
Employees are encouraged to speak with a financial advisor before changing or taking action against a voluntary 403(b). The UA Benefits team is not able to provide financial planning advice.