Rules changes for IRAs, 401(k)s & other savings vehicles.
The IRS has made minor adjustments to retirement plan limitations for 2014. As inflation has been tame in 2013, these COLAs aren’t dramatic; as a result, some retirement plans won’t see any next year. Here is a roundup of the changes for 2014.
IRAs. Not much change here: the 2014 contribution limit is still set at $5,500, with an additional $1,000 catch-up contribution permitted for those 50 and older.1
The AGI phase-out ranges affecting your ability to deduct traditional IRA contributions have been slightly adjusted north:
* Single & head-of-household filers covered by a workplace retirement plan: $60,001-70,000
* Married filing jointly, you contribute to a workplace retirement plan: $96,001-116,000
* Married filing jointly, spouse contributes to workplace plan, you don’t: $181,001-191,000. 1,2
The limits on eligibility to make Roth IRA contributions have been adjusted. You can make a full Roth contribution in 2014 if your adjusted gross income does not exceed these limits:
* Single & head-of-household filers: $114,000 (phase-out range is $114,001-129,000)
* Married filing jointly: $181,000 (phase-out range is $181,001-191,000) 1,3
401(k)s, 403(b)s, most 457 plans & the federal Thrift Savings Plan. Contribution limits on these plans are unchanged for 2014. You will be able to put up to $17,500 in these accounts next year if you are younger than 50, and $23,000 if you are 50 or older (thanks to the catch-up contribution).2,4
If you participate in more than one of these defined contribution retirement plans – for example, you contribute to a 401(k) and a 403(b), or two 401(k)s – you should know that the total contribution limit for both employee and employer contributions across all such accounts in 2014 is the lesser of: a) 100% of your compensation, b) $52,000 if you are younger than 50, or c) $57,500 if you are 50 or older.5
With regard to 401(k)s, the above limits apply to both traditional and “safe harbor” versions.5
SEP & Simple plans. In 2014, the maximum allowable compensation used in the calculation of SEP-IRA contributions increases $5,000 to $260,000. The threshold for an employee to be included in a SEP plan remains at $550 for 2014 (that is, an employee is eligible if he or she receives at least $550 in compensation from your business for the year). SIMPLE plans see no changes to contribution limits next year: the maximum plan contribution remains at $12,000 for 2014, with catch-up contributions still limited at $2,500.2,6
Profit-sharing plans. The 2014 deferral limit is $17,500, the catch-up contribution limit is $2,500, the compensation limitation is $260,000, and the maximum contribution amount across multiple plans is the lesser of a) 100% of your compensation, b) $52,000 if you are younger than 50, or c) $57,500 if you are 50 or older.4,5
ESOPs. Next year, the dollar amount used to figure out the maximum account balance in an ESOP subject to a 5-year distribution period increases by $15,000 to $1,050,000. There is also a $5,000 rise in the dollar amount used to determine the lengthening of the 5-year distribution period – it is $210,000 in 2014.2,4
The dollar limitation used to define a key employee in a top-heavy plan increases. This limit was set at $165,000 for 2013. Next year, it rises to $170,000.2,4
Income limits for the saver’s credit are slightly increasing. This federal tax credit is offered to low-income and middle-income workers saving for retirement. In 2014, you will be eligible for the credit if your AGI doesn’t exceed these thresholds:
* Married filing jointly: $60,000
* Head of household: $45,000
* Married filing separately & single filers: $30,000 3
Keep these retirement plan adjustments in mind as you think about your financial moves for 2014.
1 – bankrate.com/financing/retirement/new-irs-rules-for-retirement-plans/ [11/1/13]
2 – irs.gov/Retirement-Plans/COLA-Increases-for-Dollar-Limitations-on-Benefits-and-Contributions [10/31/13]
3 – blogs.marketwatch.com/encore/2013/10/31/irs-releases-2014-limits-for-401ks-iras/ [10/31/13]
4 – irs.gov/uac/IRS-Announces-2014-Pension-Plan-Limitations;-Taxpayers-May-Contribute-up-to-$17,500-to-their-401%28k%29-plans-in-2014 [11/4/13]
5 – irs.gov/Retirement-Plans/Plan-Participant,-Employee/Retirement-Topics—401%28k%29-and-Profit-Sharing-Plan-Contribution-Limits [11/1/13]
6 – irs.gov/Retirement-Plans/Retirement-Plans-FAQs-regarding-SEPs-Participation [2/13/13]
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