That’s right. Your 403(b) is an employer-sponsored plan, so when you leave a district, any contributions to that account stop. To continue funding your retirement savings, you need to set up a new retirement account with your new district.
Member Benefits is an approved vendor in 98% of the school districts in Wisconsin, so chances are you can continue saving for retirement with our nationally recognized 403(b). Here’s what you need to do.
We’ll help you set up your new account in about 10 minutes.
Fill out an SRA
Fill out a Salary Reduction Agreement (SRA) and submit it to your new district’s benefits manager or payroll coordinator, authorizing them to withhold and forward money from your paycheck to your 403(b). We can provide you with the SRA or you can get it from your district’s business office.
Update your account
While you’re setting up your new account, take the opportunity to:
- Review your asset allocation. This is the perfect time to make sure your investments are appropriate for your risk tolerance and retirement goals.
- Review your beneficiaries. If you’ve experienced any life events (marriage, divorce, birth of a child, death of a family member, etc.) it’s time to update your beneficiaries.
- Increase contributions. Did you get a pay increase? Have you paid off your mortgage or other significant debt? Consider redirecting those dollars to your retirement account.
- Consider adding after-tax (Roth) contributions to your 403(b) retirement savings mix if your new district allows. If not available, consider a Roth IRA. We can help you evaluate whether Roth contributions make sense for you.
Moving to a new district requires you to open a new 403(b) account in order to contribute to your retirement savings. Your 403(b) account with a previous district is still yours and will remain in that district’s plan until you either move it or need it for retirement.
Decide what you want to do about your old account
Keep in mind you may have the option to transfer the money from your old plan to your new one. The process is pretty easy. Our staff can explain your options and help you decide whether or not it makes sense to transfer the money.
P.S. Consolidating your retirement accounts makes them easier to manage and may save you money. If you want to rollover a 401(k) or other retirement account(s) to a WEA Member Benefits IRA*, we can help with that, too!
*The Trustee Custodian for the WEA Member Benefits IRA accounts is Newport Trust Company. To be eligible for this program, you must meet the IRS eligibility requirements for contributing to an IRA. Restrictions may apply. Certain state residency required.