What You Need To Know About The 401(a) Retirement Plan

The 401(a) Retirement Plan is a multiple employer, defined contribution, money purchase pension plan and is also a church plan. This means that your benefits are defined by the amount contributed to your accounts in the Retirement Plan during your Y career, plus the interest credited to these accounts. On this page, you will learn about your eligibility to participate in the Retirement Plan and how contributions to the Plan work. You can also read our Summary Plan Description Booklet for more information.


Before you can be enrolled in the Retirement Plan, you must meet certain age and service requirements. Your eligibility in the Retirement Plan depends on:

  1. Y service: You must complete 1,000 hours of service during each of any two 12-month periods, beginning with your date of hire or anniversary date. The two years do not have to be consecutive.
  2. Age: Once you have completed the service requirement, you are enrolled on the first day of the month following your anniversary date, provided you are 21 years of age. If your anniversary date falls on the first of the month, you are enrolled on your anniversary date.

Once you have met the eligibility requirements, your Y will enroll you in the Retirement Plan. Upon enrollment, you are immediately vested. For more information on Enrollment and Eligibility, click here.

Plan Contributions

Contributions to the Retirement Plan are based on your salary. Your Y chooses a total contribution rate of 12%, 11%, 10%, 9%, or 8%. Within that contribution rate, your Y also determines whether they will require you to participate in making contributions to your savings in the Plan.

How Contributions Work

Suppose your Y has chosen a 12% contribution rate and your paycheck is $2,500. If your Y makes the entire contribution (the full 12%), $300 will be sent to your YMCA Account after every payroll.

If instead your Y has chosen to pay 7% and requires you to pay 5%, your Y will send $175 to your YMCA Account and $125 will be deducted from your paycheck after tax withholding and sent to your Personal Account.

Contribution Rate = 12%
Your Paycheck = $2,500
When Your Y
Pays All
When You
Pay Some
YMCA Account Contribution $300 $175
Personal Account Contribution $0 $125
Total Contribution Each Payroll $300 $300



Contributions made to your YMCA Account, and the interest credited to that account, are not taxed until you make a withdrawal from your YMCA Account.

If your Y requires you to make contributions to your Personal Account, your contributions have already been taxed before being deducted from your paycheck. So only the interest credited to that account is taxed when you make a withdrawal from your Personal Account.