Your Guide to Optional Contributions

As a YWCARF participant, you are not obligated to contribute your own money to your retirement account. It’s your secure retirement for a career of YWCA service, built monthly through your association’s contribution, our 40% match, and interest.

But if you would like to boost your future retirement benefit through your own funds, you may make optional after-tax contributions or catch-up contributions to your account.

* You can start and stop through your association’s payroll department.
* There’s no fixed time commitment.
* You can catch up on previous years.

Here’s what you need to know.

What are optional after-tax contributions?
Optional after-tax contributions are monthly contributions to your YWCARF account made through payroll deductions by your association.

How much can I contribute?

You can calculate contributions in one of two ways: either a percentage or a whole dollar amount, so long as it is between 1% and 10% of your gross monthly compensation.

How do I start making contributions?

To start or stop optional after-tax contributions, you must submit a completed - or updated - Authorization for Optional Employee Contributions form to your association’s payroll department.

You don’t have to commit to making contributions for a fixed period, and can start or stop at any time.

Are my contributions taxable?

Optional employee after-tax contributions are made on an after-tax basis. But when you receive a distribution, the interest that your optional after-tax contributions earned will be taxed.

Can all participants make after-tax contributions?

No. In accordance with the law, participants who are considered “highly compensated” by the IRS may not make optional after-tax contributions.

A participant who made more than $150,000 in 2023 is deemed “highly compensated” in 2024 and may not contribute their own money to their YWCARF account. The IRS adjusts this limit annually.

Note to administrators:
Who’s Where will automatically decline optional after-contributions for “highly compensated” employees. However, we urge all associations to note this limit to avoid processing delays.

What are catch-up contributions?

If you haven’t made optional after-tax contributions in previous years but would like to, you may make “catch-up contributions.” These are paid directly to YWCARF in a single sum.

Contact our Member Services team to contact the allowable amount.

To see the impact optional after-tax contributions could have on your retirement benefit, try our Retirement Estimator Tool!