TAX SHELTERED ANNUITY 403(b) PLAN (TSA)
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Plan History and Purpose

The Tax Sheltered Annuity 403(b) Plan, or TSA, was adopted by NSHE to provide employees with the opportunity to save more for retirement than they would otherwise be able to accumulate by participation in the mandatory plan alone (RPA for faculty and professional staff, PERS for classified staff, and the Medical Resident/Postdoctoral Scholar plan for medical residents and postdoctoral scholars). Participation in the TSA is open to all classes of employees, except students, and is strictly voluntary. NSHE does not match your contributions to the Plan.

How You Participate

The TSA is a voluntary plan that provides you with an opportunity to supplement your mandatory contributions to the RPA, the Medical Resident/Postdoctoral Scholar Plan or PERS and to build a larger retirement nest egg than you would otherwise be able to build. You can contribute a percentage of your salary up to the maximum amount allowed by law. Currently the maximum allowable contribution is $16,500. This will increase to $17,000 in 2012. Participants over the age of 50 can contribute an additional $5,500. NSHE does not match your contributions in this plan.

You can contribute to the plan on a pre-tax or a post-tax basis. Your pre-tax contributions will be taxed when you take the money out of the plan. Post-tax contributions will come back to you untaxed when you take the money out of the plan.

You can begin, resume, change, or discontinue your contributions to the TSA by accessing the NSHE Employee Self-Service Utility.

You choose how to invest your contributions. The amount of money available to you when you leave NSHE or retire will depend upon the performance of the investments you choose.  All three recordkeepers have professional investment counselors available to assist you in your investment deliberations.

If you are considering participation in this voluntary plan, you may want to visit the TIAA-CREF, VALIC or Fidelity Investments micro sites for more information.

When You are Eligible to Receive Your Retirement Benefits

You are eligible to receive the benefits you accumulate in this plan when you:

  • terminate your employment with NSHE,
  • become disabled,
  • turn age 59 ½ even if still employed,
  • die

How Your Benefits Are Paid to You

Your retirement benefits in this plan may be distributed to you in any of the ways described below at your discretion:

  • a single lump sum ,
  • a partial distribution of your account,
  • installment payments over a period not to exceed  your life expectancy or, alternatively, the life expectancy of yourself and that of your designated beneficiary,
  • used to purchase an annuity contract (if assets are held in a custodial contract) or converted to an income contract (if assets are held in an annuity contract).

Additionally, while you are employed you may take a hardship withdrawal subject to IRS rules and the terms of your individual agreement with your recordkeeper.

Borrowing from the Plan

Personal loans and home purchase loans are available from your pre-tax  contributions and earnings. The minimum amount you may borrow is $1,000. The maximum amount you may borrow is the lesser of:

  1. $50,000 reduced by any previous loans you have outstanding and the amount by which your highest outstanding loan balance from all retirement plans during the prior 12 months exceeds your outstanding loan balance from all retirement plans on the date your loan application is approved, and
  2. 50% of your vested interest in all your retirement plan accounts.

You may have no more than 1 home purchase and 2 personal loans at any time.

Each recordkeeper (Fidelity, TIAA-CREF or VALIC) has its own loan application process. Contact your recordkeeper to initiate a loan.

Click here to review NHSE's Procedures Applicable to Participant Loans.

Plan Document

Click here to view the official plan document