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90-24 Transfer

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***** Is there a way of avoiding a 6% asset transfer charge from one 403b custodian to another? *****



Normally, I transfer my 403b funds from Great-West Life & Annuity Insurance Company to my 403b account at Vanguard Funds each year. As of January, 2003, my South Carolina Deferred Comp Program dropped the 403b plan from its list of retirement plans. Now, the Great-West 403b has no connection with the SC Deferred Comp Program at all.


In prior years when Great-West had a contract with my SC Deferred Comp Program there were no transfer fees when I transferred 403b monies from Great-West to my Vanguard 403b, but this year I've been informed that there will be a 6% charge for any monies I transfer out of the Great-West account to any other custodian. I was not aware of or notified of any charges that would become active as a result of the SC Deferred Comp Program's split with Great-West as a 403b custodian.


I sent Great-West a copy of a 1989 document that indicates there would be no transfer fees associated with my 403b account. In addition, all prior year transfers of monies from the Great-West 403b account to the Vanguard 403b account have had no charges associated with them. In response to these two things a Great-West representative told me that this was a new charge that the SC Deferred Comp Program agreed to when the split between the SC Deferred Comp Program and Great-West took place at the beginning of this year. Is there any way of avoiding this 6% asset transfer fee? As I say, I was not aware of or informed about this charge until I contacted Great-West about my intention to do another 90-24 asset transfer this year.



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