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Friday December 13, 2019

Washington News

Washington Hotline

IRA and 401(k) Contributions in 2020

On November 6, 2019, the IRS announced the 401(k) and IRA contribution limits for 2020. The IRA limit remains at $6,000 in 2020. Individuals over age 50 may make a catch-up contribution of $1,000, for a total transfer of $7,000 in 2020.

Traditional IRA contributions from pre-tax income are tax deductible. The traditional IRA has two main tax benefits – contributions are tax deductible and grow tax free. If you are covered by a qualified retirement plan at your workplace, the IRA deduction may be reduced or phased out.
  1. Single Taxpayers with Workplace Plan – IRA contributions for single taxpayers are phased out for individuals with incomes from $65,000 to $75,000.
  2. Married Couple with Workplace Plan – Married taxpayers with joint income of $104,000 - $124,000 will experience the IRA phaseout.
  3. Married and No Workplace Plan – If one spouse has no workplace plan and the other spouse is covered by his or her workplace plan, the phaseout on a joint return is $196,000 to $206,000.
A Roth IRA is funded with after-tax income. It grows tax free and most distributions are tax free. Roth IRA owners may withdraw contributions tax-free at any time. After the Roth IRA has been in existence for five years and the owner is over age 59½, amounts may be withdrawn tax free.

The Roth IRA phaseout limits also increase in 2020.
  1. Single Individuals – The Roth phaseout for single taxpayers next year will be $124,000 to $139,000.
  2. Married Couples – For married couples, the Roth IRA phaseout is $196,000 to $206,000.
Many businesses maintain a 401(k) plan and most nonprofits provide a 403(b) plan. The limit for an employee contribution to a 401(k) or 403(b) plan increases to $19,500 in 2020. Employees over age 50 may make an additional catch-up contribution of $6,500, for a total transfer limit of $26,000.

If your employer offers both a traditional 401(k) and a Roth 401(k) plan, you may allocate your employee contribution to one or both funds. The traditional 401(k) amounts are tax deductible, but the Roth 401(k) contributions are after-tax.

Some employers choose to match the employees' 401(k) contributions. This is a good way to encourage employee participation in the 401(k) plan. The employer match is used to fund the employee’s traditional 401(k) account. The employee may still make contributions to a Roth or traditional 401(k) account up to the $19,500 or $26,000 limit.

Published November 8, 2019
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