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Eastern Washington University
Cheney, WA 99004
phone: 509.359.2488
fax: 509.359.2874

Voluntary Investment Program

Eastern Washington University offers all faculty and staff the opportunity to participate in voluntary (non-matched) tax deferred retirement savings programs. These plans are referred to as 403(b) and 457 plans. To participate in these long-term savings programs, you enter into an agreement with the University to deduct a specified amount from your paychecks. These contributions are tax deferred and remitted to the investment plan of your choice. (There are no contributions made by the University to this voluntary program.) Your contributions are made through payroll reduction - the University "reduces" or tax defers your current taxable income by the amount of your contributions. The effect is that federal withholding is deferred on the amount of this contribution until the funds are received as pension income, taken as a survivor's benefit, or are withdrawn as cash.

Earnings credited to your account are also tax deferred allowing your investment to grow faster than it would in a conventional non-deferred savings program. Over time, the extra dollars saved by compounding interest and/or earnings on a tax deferred basis can contribute substantially to future retirement income.

As a faculty or staff member of an institution of higher education, you may participate in any of the University-sponsored tax deferred 403(b) investment plans (listed below) and the State of Washington Deferred Compensation Program 457. Website links are available below.

Contribution maximums and withdrawal provisions vary depending upon your plan selection.

Eligibility:  In general, all faculty and staff who are employed half-time or more and whose employment is expected to continue more than six months are eligible to participate in the program provided that, if eligible, they are also currently participating in one of the University-sponsored basic retirement plans.

Minimum Investment:  Participants in this optional tax deferred program may choose to Investment contribute as little as $15 per pay period.

Tax-deferral Limits: Internal Revenue Service regulations establish certain annual contribution limits under both the University's 403(b) plans and the State of Washington's 457 tax deferred investment plans. The Tax Relief Act of 2001 has simplified the annual limits. Beginning January 1, 2002, the annual limit is $11,000; this will increase by $1,000 increments until 2006 when it reaches $15,000. You will need to complete the Salary Reduction Agreement authorizing the deferral. Thereafter, you will contact the Benefits Office to initiate any changes to increase or decrease the amount.

To Enroll - Call the Benefits Office to obtain literature and assistance with enrolling in the programs.

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