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  1. Sorry for the delay. They have given no specifics. Here is their letter to me: Dear Mr. xxxx: You recently contacted us about your 403(b)(7) plan. Since our previous response, we've received updated information to share with you. We're pleased to announce that Vanguard has reached a mutually agreeable solution with The Omni Group, a large third party administrator for 403(b) plans. Vanguard and Omni have been working closely to ensure the continued availability of Vanguard mutual funds to their clients. We felt that the requirements outlined in Omni's Information Sharing Agreement were ones that Vanguard could meet reasonably and cost-effectively. As a result, a considerable number of 403(b)(7) participants may be able to continue investing with Vanguard after 01/01/2009 (the effective date for the new 403(b) regulations). If your employer is using Omni's services, please visit Omni's website (www.omni403b.com) to verify whether Vanguard is an approved vender for your plan. To view the list of service providers selected under your employer's plan, you should select your organization from the "Client Home Page" and review the "Participating Service Provider" list. If you have additional questions, please call us. You can reach us on business days from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. and on Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Eastern time. Sincerely, Vanguard © 2008 The Vanguard Group, Inc. All rights reserved. Vanguard Marketing Corporation, Distributor.
  2. Hello, I'm not sure if others have spread the good news here but Omni and Vanguard (and also Omni and Fidelity) have entered into the ISA. I was planning on pulling the plug this week due to being forced out by Omni. I had emailed Vanguard and Omni and both had explained they could not come to an agreement as recently as two weeks ago. A few days ago I received a letter from Vanguard basically explaining that they would be doing business with one another and that, rest assured, clients would be able to continue investing without a hitch. Sure enough, Vanguard is now on the "approved" list on Omni's website. Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus. Happy Holidays
  3. Hi John, The TSP operates under 401(a) of the Code. So the TSP contribution is not offset by the 403(b) contribution. So Glen can contribute $15,500 to the TSP and another $15,500 to EITHER a 403(b) or a 457(b). Peace and hope, Joel Joel: If you are referring to the federal thrift savings plan the IRS regards it as a 401k plan, not a 401(a) plan and deferrals are limited to $15,500. See IRS publication 525, P 8-9. If the TSP is subject to the 401k plan limit of 15,500 on employee deferrals why isnt it aggregated with salary reduction 403b contributions under IRC 402(g) for a maximum deferral of $15,500 to both plans? Intruder: You are wrong. Here is the proof: How is the TSP treated under the I.R.C.? I.R.C. § 7701(j) states that the TSP is to be treated as a trust described in § 401(a) which is exempt from taxation under § 501(a). (See also 5 U.S.C. § 8440.) I respectfully request that you admit that you posted the wrong information and stand corrected. Joel Joel: All 401k plans are qualified plans that meet the requirements of IRC 401(a). IRC 401(k)(1) states that a profit sharing or stock bonus plan shall not be considered as not satisifying the requirements of IRC 401(a) merely because the plan includes a qualified cash or deferred arrangement defined in IRC 401(k)(2). If you had read IRC 7701(j) you would have noticed subsection (1)© states that the TSP will be subject to all dollar limitations of IRC 402(e)(3) which provides that contributions made under a cash or deferred arrangement under IRC 401(k)(2) or a salary reduction agreement under 403(b) shall not be treated as distributed. IRC 402(g) provides that not withstanding IRC 402(e)(3), elective deferrals shall be be included in the individual's gross income to the extent they exeed the applicable dollar amount. The applicable dollar amount for 2008 is 15,500. Sub section 402(g)(3) provides that the elective deferrals for a taxable year for an individual include the sum of salary deferrals under IRC 401(k), salary reduction under 403(b) and employee contributions to a SIMPLE plan. Therefore, employee deferrals to a 403b plan must be aggregated with employee deferrals to the TSP for a maximum of 15,500. The employee could defer an additional $15,500 under a 457(b) plan. Hi folks, Glen, I would see a CPA to clarify. I've been reading the IRS documents referenced above and find myself cross-eyed. Joel, I thought that only educators with a 457(b) could also contribute to a 403(b) to a maximum AGI of $31,000. d
  4. See IRS pub 525 P 8-9. max reduction of AGI is 31,000. All in two tidy little pages. Easy to miss. Thank you, d
  5. Hi folks, I've been perusing the IRS Publication 590 and still cannot find where it explicitly states one may contribute to a 457(b) at $15,500 in addition to another investment vehicle at $15,500. I have found several institutions (mostly school districts) within NY State and in other states that have published brochures indicating that a contributor may do so. Question: If one contributes a total of, say, $31,000, does this mean that person would be allowed to claim an adjustable gross income (AGI) which reflects this? (If so-- wow!) Finally, can someone point out where, exactly, I can read this allowance on the IRS site? Thank you !! d
  6. dcfas

    Axa Equitable

    Check with your business office on what providers, other than AXA, are offered. If Vanguard, Tiaa-Cref, TRowe Price, or Fidelity are offered, open an account with one. Stop contributions to AXA. Start contributions to your new, low cost, no fee provider. In the mean time, consider transferring your assets from AXA to your new provider but don't rush into it. Educate yourself on what fees and costs you will have to pay. When you understand what it is going to cost you, plan for it and then make the transfer. Start reading up on the above financial companies-- many people here are fans and customers of Vanguard. I have an index fund of funds which includes one "basket" full of index funds for a total of 0.21% and 15 bucks a year. Its allocation historically averages 10%. I say go with an index fund. Good luck, d
  7. Hi, I feel there will not be a significant change in our list of providers. I do think that providers that do not sign the new regs paperwork regarding sharing will be dropped. If they drop VG I'll pass out. PS I called the NYSDCP and Joel was correct (shouldn't have doubted)-- All school districts have the option of signing up to the plan, not just NYC districts. I emailed our union rep this morning. I'll report back. d
  8. D, I e-mailed TDS and expect to hear absolutely nothing from them. I have contacted my association president and chief negotiator. I'm afraid that our good friend Intruder is correct about this: few people really give a darn about 403b and 457 investing. I'm in my prime earning years and I would like to contribute to BOTH a 403b and 457. This is important for my retirement. But I am concerned that I will have poor options in both types of plans by January of 2009. ap, I also asked about the 403(b) Roth. We'll see if anyone responds. Next step is getting on the horn. I'm fortunate at my school in that they do offer Vanguard, which I have. My wife can get Fidelity at her school, which we are switching her to. I hope you are successful in obtaining a better plan at your school. d
  9. My district has acted in the same way. Nothing -- yes, absolutely nothing -- has been discussed. They simply chose a lousy TPA (Tax Deferred Services), and away they went. Who knows what the heck is going on? Same here, other than a form letter from Omni. I've spoken with our principal, emailed the business office, discussed the issue briefly with one of our union reps and, apparently, everyone is in the dark. A couple hundred Masters and PhD degrees and we're all clueless. Go figure. Anyway, the last time I emailed Omni they seemed disinclined to do anything before 1/09. I will email them tonight. d
  10. https://www.nrsservicecenter.com/iApp/ret/c...amp;Site=nysdcp Thank you, I have read this site and still do not see a specific statement including school districts. I would like to see such a specific statement so that I can print it out and bring it in to work. Thanks, d
  11. Hello, Personally, I would seek some help from a fee based financial adviser. There are numerous variables to consider, all important. You can check http://www.napfa.org/ for an adviser in your area, I believe. Best of luck, d
  12. Hi all, I have emailed the NY State Deferred Compensation Plan agency and am awaiting a definitive answer regarding all NY school districts. Can anyone direct me to the NY State website/url/page that states all districts may opt in to the 457(b)? Thanks in advance, d
  13. AP1, I have recently opened an account with VG and have been instructed by my school and Omni (see Omni discussion) that there will be a "freeze" until 1/09. I have assets in an AF fund which I have decided to simply hold, at least for now. All of my contributions at this point are with VG. It is my understanding that even if VG is on your school's provider list at this time, it may not continue to be (or any of the other financial institutions). If that were to occur you may be in jeopardy of having to pay taxes on this account. This is unlikely, however. VG will probably remain on your school's list and I've read also that there may be a period (Jan-July?) in which you would be allowed to transfer to another company on the school's list, once again, in the unlikely event VG will be off the list. Perhaps others can confirm, Good luck, d
  14. dcfas

    Fidelity Ffnox

    So if I understand you correctly---your wife cannot dictate where she wants the school district's $2000.00 to go---it must go into the ING account. Recognizing this is a direct contribution by the school district's taxpayers why would the school district/taxpayers designate a high cost product? What are they getting from ING in return for designating ING as the sole funding vehicle for the school district/taxpayer contribution of $2,000.00? Peace and Hope, Joel L. Frank Correct. I should add my wife is an administrator. We realized over the summer what was going on when I stumbled upon the law suit Spitzer and NY State had won against ING. We were clueless. That's when I started doing some serious investigating on my own and found this website, thank goodness. We are on our way to setting our investments straight with about 20 years to go. It seems very few of my colleagues are aware of what's going on-- I've seen the same story here, multiple times. This is a 403(b) forum, but I am also seriously reading up on the Roths. I plan on writing a letter to our business office for information regarding a 403(b) ROTH option. d Will I be accurate in stating that your wife's $2000.00 goes into "Oportunity Plus" the ING variable annuity previously endorsed by the NYSUT? Is she currently employed by a NY state school district? Joel Yes, Joel. Hi dcfas; Do you and your wife know that the NY state Deferred Compensation Plan may be opted into by local public sector employers including school districts? Have your respective school districts done so? This is one of the best kept secrets in NY. A couple of days ago I spoke to one of the officials of the NYSUT Benefits Trust and suggested they do the right thing in the wake of the Spitzer settlement and that means without any financial incentive whatsoever issue an enthusiastic endorsement of the state's 457(b) Plan===one of the best of its kind in the nation. Peace and Hope, Joel J, I saw your post earlier on the 457(b) for educators and was intrigued. Many of our close friends are state employees and they love it. I'm not clear, however, what exactly is the advantage over an excellent 403(b). d So you did not know of this prior to reading my post? Don't you feel that just like there is a sole primary retirement plan for ALL public sector emplyees in the state there should be a sole voluntary salary reduction plan? That is all NYC has offered in the long history of salary reduction plans. To me this is a no-brainer! In my view that plan is the 457(b) plan administered by the state. Section 457(b) exempts ALL withdrawals from the 10 percent federal excise tax. Please comment. Thanks, Joel J, I was not aware the 457(b) exempts all withdrawals from the excise tax. That might explain why we are not offered it. d Why would the exemption from the 10 percent federal excise tax be a reason for your school district not offering the state's 457(b) Plan to its employees? Joel I was being sardonic. I'm going to email Omni and ask about the 457(b). Their reply should be interesting. d
  15. Jonhello, I think the Roth 403(b) is an excellent way to go. My wife and I, each in different districts, currently do not have that option. Regarding the AF A shares, I have them and have stopped purchasing shares due to the load you mention above. It is much too costly. I will hold them to balance my VG Target fund. We will probably go Fidelity with the wife, and perhaps add a traditional Roth. dcfas
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