401(k) Plans: Policy Changes Could Reduce the Long-Term Effects of Leakage on Workers┐ Retirement Savings

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DIANE Publishing, 2010 - 52 pages
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Under federal regulations, 401(k) participants may tap into their accrued retirement savings before retirement under certain circumstances, including hardship. This "leakage" from 401(k) accounts can result in a permanent loss of retirement savings. This report analyzes: (1) the incidence, amount, and relative significance of the different forms of 401(k) leakage; (2) how plans inform participants about hardship withdrawal provisions, loan provisions, and options at job separation, including the short- and long-term costs of each; and (3) how various policies may affect the incidence of leakage. To address these matters, the report analyzed federal and 401(k) industry data and interviewed federal officials, pension experts, and plan administrators. Illus.

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