linkedin instagram facebook plus
MENU

Lower your taxable income and grow funds tax-free.

The Tax-Deferred Retirement Account (TDRA), also known as a 403(b)(9) plan, is an employer-sponsored retirement savings plan that allows eligible employees to set aside a portion of their salary on a pre-tax basis to save for retirement. By contributing to a TDRA, you’re able to lower your taxable income and defer taxes until you withdraw funds in retirement.

Enjoy competitive, guaranteed base returns. This product offers a guaranteed base interest rate of 3-6%, reducing your downside risk. Each account also qualifies for Good Experience Credits (additional interest earnings) when designated by Pension Fund’s Board of Directors.

Use as an estate planning tool. TDRA participants may choose any beneficiary or beneficiaries. In doing so, it is possible to save an inheritance for children or other heirs, above and beyond retirement needs, within IRS guidelines for maximum contributions. Each participant (or their heirs) will ultimately receive the balance in the account.

Easily roll over funds from another 403(b) plan. Pension Fund welcomes rollovers from eligible participants. Those eligible can request to make a rollover contribution to the TDRA in the form of a distribution from an eligible retirement plan, including:

  • 401(a) or 402(a) qualified plan

  • 403(b) plan

  • 457(b) plan of a governmental entity

  • Eligible individual retirement account (IRA) or annuity


“I would suggest making monthly contributions to Pension Fund’s Tax-Deferred Retirement Account...Small amounts add up quickly!”

Rev. Sandra Gourdet, Retired Missionary

Key Benefits
  • Employer may make contributions

  • Contributions are normally made pre-tax (lowering your taxable income)

  • Competitive base return

  • Increases with Good Experience Credits

  • Earnings are tax-deferred

  • Complements other retirement savings plans

Is the Tax-Deferred Retirement Account right for me?

What are the benefits of the Tax-Deferred Retirement Account (TDRA)? One of the major benefits of participating in our TDRA product is that contributions are made pre-tax, which lowers your taxable income. Also, contribution limits are higher than with other retirement accounts (like IRAs), and funds can be grown tax-free until retirement distribution.

Because TDRA participants can choose beneficiaries to receive the funds, the TDRA may be used as an estate planning tool to leave an inheritance. Another potential benefit includes easy, pain-free contributions. Employer may make contributions in addition to salary, and participants may make contributions through salary reduction.


What are the potential drawbacks of the TDRA?

Like many retirement products, the TDRA requires that funds stay in the account until retirement. There are some exceptions to this rule, however, such as separating from employment, becoming disabled or encountering an eligible financial hardship (such as medical expenses, funeral expenses and natural disasters).

Also, similar to other products, the TDRA is subject to Required Minimum Distributions (RMDs) after a member turns age 70½, unless he or she hasn’t retired from qualified employment.


Am I eligible to participate in the TDRA?

If you’re employed by an organization affiliated with the Stone-Campbell/Restoration Movement, you’re eligible to participate in the TDRA. These organizations include, but are not limited to, congregations, wider ministries, seminaries, and universities and colleges associated with the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Christian Churches/Churches of Christ, or Churches of Christ in the United States. A minister who is self-employed can also become a participant in the TDRA as long as ministerial services are being performed for compensation.

Disclaimer here as well for PR and Canada.


How do I get started?

In a participation agreement between your employer and Pension Fund, your employer will define eligibility requirements for participation of itself and its employees in the TDRA. You or a representative of your employer can contact Pension Fund directly to set up a participation agreement at 866.495.7322 (PFCC) or pfcc1@pensionfund.org.

Tax-Deferred Retirement FAQs

What are Good Experience Credits?

Good Experience Credits are additional interest earnings. Each year, the Pension Fund Board of Directors reviews reserves required for current and future benefits, as well as reserves needed for any potential market declines. When reserves exist above what is required, the Board of Directors may declare Good Experience Credits for all Tax-Deferred Retirement Account (TDRA) participants. Over time, these extra earnings can make a significant difference when saving for retirement.

What are contribution limits for the TDRA?

Internal Revenue Code rules limit the total amount of contributions that may be contributed to the TDRA on a participant’s behalf by the employer. The limit on elective deferrals (what the participant chooses to contribute) is $18,000.* Additional elective contributions may be made when specific eligibility requirements are met under IRS guidelines for catchup contributions and the 15-year rule for years of service with the employer (see Catch-up Provision for TDRAs, below). A church employee may treat all years of service with churches or organizations related to Pension Fund as years of service with the same employer.

Catch-up Provisions for TDRAs: There are two instances in which you’re allowed to contribute additional funds to your TDRA:

  • If you’re age 50 or older, you may contribute an additional $6,000 per year under the catch-up contributions.

  • If you have been employed by the church or another related organization for 15 years or more, your maximum contribution may be increased by $3,000 per year ($15,000 lifetime maximum).

For more information on catch-up provisions, call or email us with your questions.

Can I withdraw funds prior to retirement?

The participant may request a distribution from the account at any time if the participant:

  • Separates from employment (rollover required)

  • Attains age 59½

  • Becomes disabled

  • Encounters financial hardship that qualifies under the plan (in the case of salary contribution agreement)

  • Has a qualified reservist distribution

Some employers require, by policy, a vesting schedule for employee contributions. As such, some distributions may be subject to an early distribution penalty. A participant may request a distribution from the employee contributions portion of the TDRA while still employed by the employer if a qualified financial hardship exists and no other financial resources are available.

When must I start taking distributions?

Distribution of accounts must begin no later than April 1 of the calendar year following the calendar year in which the participant turns age 70½, unless he or she has not retired from qualified employment. Participants may elect to receive distributions from accounts in any form of payment option offered by the TDRA. Payment options include lump sum, single life annuity, 50% joint and survivor annuity, 100% joint and survivor annuity, or single life annuity with 10 years certain and installments.

Can I roll over funds to Pension Fund’s TDRA?

Pension Fund welcomes rollovers from eligible participants. Those eligible can request to make a rollover contribution to the TDRA in the form of a distribution from an eligible retirement plan, including:

  • 401(a) or 402(a) qualified plan

  • 403(b) plan

  • 457(b) plan of a governmental entity

  • Eligible individual retirement account (IRA) or annuity

*Tax year 2015, Internal Revenue Service