Overview

The UW Tax-Sheltered Annuity (TSA) 403(b) Program is a supplemental retirement savings program. Through the TSA Program you can invest a portion of your income for retirement on either a pre-tax basis, an after-tax basis (Roth), or a combination of both. Participation in the UW TSA Program is voluntary with employees making the entire contribution; there is no employer match. For more background information on the program, read through our Plan Document and Plan Criteria.

The TSA Program is administered by UW System Human Resources, with the TSA Review Committee serving as an advisory resource of the program. Financial information on the program can be found in the Annual Reports.

Investment Providers

UW TSA 403(b) Program investment options include a wide array of mutual funds and fixed and variable annuities managed by five investment providers.

Mutual Fund Companies
Mutual Fund/Insurance Company
Insurance Companies
Frozen Providers
  • Contact information for frozen providers can be found by clicking here.

See the Quick Guide for more information on the providers.

Name & Address Changes

If you are already enrolled with a TSA provider and need to make changes to your personal information, please do the following:

  • Change of address: contact the provider over the phone or in writing. Only TIAA permits online address changes.
  • Change in name: changes must be made in writing. Contact your provider to obtain a form.

Eligibility

All University of Wisconsin employees, including rehired annuitants, student hourlies, and graduate assistants — with the exception of some employees-in-training, fellows, and interns — are eligible to participate. Eligible employees can enroll at any time.

Fees

The UW TSA 403(b) Program provides a low-cost way to save for retirement. All funds are no-load: there are no sales commissions or broker fees. There is no University fee. The UW TSA providers have no annual fees. Participants have access to funds with special low-cost share classes like Fidelity K Shares and TIAA and T. Rowe Price Institutional share classes.


Education

It is important to Save Smart, Save Early — even a small amount adds up! There are many tools to help you learn about investment choices and how to meet your savings goals, including counseling sessions with representatives of the providers, TSA Basics seminars, and webinars. Click on the options below to learn more.

Watch the short video below to learn more about the UW TSA 403(b) Program. When you click on the video link, a new tab will open and take you to the video on  YouTube.

We will be adding more videos in the near future so check back soon!

All providers are available for one-on-one counseling sessions. These sessions are available for those who already participate in the TSA Program as well as for those considering participation. This is a free service provided by our investment providers.

T. Rowe Price provides individual counseling sessions over the phone. To speak to a T. Rowe Price representative, call 1-888-263-2899.

Lincoln Financial and Ameriprise/RiverSource have advisors for all campuses. Call to find the location nearest you. For Lincoln, call 608-238-8388. For Ameriprise, call 608-819-0500.

Fidelity and TIAA offer one-on-one counseling sessions at institutions. The sessions fill up fast and you must make an appointment with the individual provider in advance. Current session dates available are listed below by vendor, then institution.

How to Register

Fidelity: To schedule an appointment with a Fidelity representative, sign up online or call 1-800-642-7131.

TIAA: To schedule an appointment with a TIAA representative, sign up online or call 1-800-732-8353.

Fidelity Counseling
  • UW-Madison
    • December 12, 19
TIAA Counseling

 

Please contact TSA staff at uwshr@uwsa.edu for more information about counseling sessions.

UW System Administration staff provides a seminar that helps you learn about the TSA 403(b) Program and the basics of investing. If you are in the Madison area and would like to attend, please see the UW-Madison OHRD Benefits Education website (click on TSA Basics) for dates, times, and how to register.

Please contact TSA staff at uwshr@uwsa.edu for more information about group seminars.

Several of our TSA providers offer webinars for current participants and those considering enrolling to view at their leisure. Please keep in mind that these webinars and videos cover a large variety of topics and are not specific to 403(b) plans or the UW TSA 403(b) Program.

Lincoln

Lincoln currently has two Brainshark videos available on budgeting and managing debt, with regards to retirement planning. 

Retire Right: Budgeting for the future you want

Managing Debt: The art of balancing spending and savings

TIAA

TIAA offers a variety of webinars under the following topics: Investing in Your Future, Living in Retirement, Planning for Today and Tomorrow, Saving for Life's Milestones, and Spending Within Your Means. You can view these webinars whether you have enrolled with TIAA or not. After clicking the link below, scroll down the page and click on "Explore Webinars."

TIAA Webinars

If you have enrolled, use your sign-in information to gain access. If you have not enrolled, you will need to click on the "Register for guest access" link and follow the prompts to sign in. Once you have signed in, you can either register for upcoming webinars by clicking one and filling out the information OR you can choose "On Demand Webinars" to gain access to saved webinars that expire 30 days after the date listed.

T. Rowe Price

Through their myRetirementTV site, T. Rowe Price offers a variety of videos on topics including: Women on Retirement, Your Savings at Work, Social Security, Investing, and Planning.

myRetirementTV


Enrollment

Enrolling in the TSA Program is easy.

First, research and select a TSA Program provider(s) that can help you meet your future retirement needs with the flexibility you need to manage your account. Please view the UW System TSA Investment Returns to see which funds each provider offers. The provider websites also have great information on investment basics.

Second, choose a way to sign up! When you create an account with the provider(s), be prepared to provide them with information about yourself, your beneficiary(ies), and your investment choices. If you need help choosing investments, call the provider. You can also check out the Education section on this website to see if there are individual counseling sessions, workshops, and webinars available.

  • To set up an account with Ameriprise/RiverSource and/or Lincoln, you will work directly with an agent.
  • To set up an account with Fidelity, TIAA, and/or T. Rowe Price, you can sign up online, with the EZ Enrollment form, or with a complete paper application.

With any provider(s) you choose, you will need to fill out a Salary Reduction Agreement (SRA) after you set up your account (exception: the EZ Enrollment form does not require a SRA to be filled out).

Click below for instructions on how to set up an account online, with an EZ Enrollment form, or via paper application. You will find links to provider websites, enrollment forms, and the Salary Reduction Agreement form in the menu below.

Enrolling online is quick, convenient, and immediate! Use the links below to enroll with the provider(s) of your choice (a new tab will open redirecting to the provider website). Be sure you understand your investment choices before enrolling and ask the provider representative about anything you do not understand.

  • Fidelity - Enter your Social Security Number and click Continue
  • TIAA - Click yellow Ready to Enroll button, check the 403(b) Tax-Sheltered Annuity Plan and click next. Then click the yellow Begin Enrollment button
  • T. Rowe Price - Scroll to the bottom of the page and click on the blue Enrollment Form box

After you have created your account online, fill out the Salary Reduction Agreement (SRA) to indicate how much you want to contribute every pay period. Submit the Salary Reduction Agreement to your human resources office.

Download the EZ Enrollment Form for the provider(s) of your choice. Complete and submit the application to your human resources office. Upon submission of an EZ Enrollment Form, your contributions will be invested in a target date retirement fund with a target date closest to the year you turn 65. However, you can change your investment elections at any time once you sign up. If you wish to contribute to any other investment options immediately upon enrollment, please enroll online or fill out a complete enrollment application instead.

Please note that the Salary Reduction Agreement does not need to be completed if applying via EZ Enrollment Form.

Download the paper application for the company(ies) of your choice. Mail the completed application directly to the company address listed on the application. 

  • Fidelity Application - University of Wisconsin Fidelity Plan Number is 82828 (enter on page 2 beneath Name of Employer)
  • TIAA Application - University of Wisconsin TIAA Plan ID Number is 100988
  • T. Rowe Price Application - University of Wisconsin T. Rowe Price Plan Number is 200629 (write the plan number at the top of the application)

Please mail your application at least 14 days before submitting your Salary Reduction Agreement to your human resources office.

With the exception of the EZ Enrollment form, you will need to fill out a Salary Reduction Agreement (SRA) when signing up for a TSA 403(b) account. Depending on which option you choose, it may be time sensitive to when you turn it into your human resources office (please see the tabs above for more information on each option).The provider cannot accept your 403(b) contribution until you have opened an account. Do NOT file a Salary Reduction Agreement with human resources until you have enrolled with your provider.

The Salary Reduction Agreement (SRA) authorizes the UW to withhold either a dollar amount or percent of pay (salary) from each paycheck and send it to the TSA provider(s) you choose.

It is your responsibility to confirm that your SRA has been properly processed by monitoring your earnings statement.

WARNING: If you choose 100%, then ALL of your salary — after Social Security (FICA), insurance premiums, and required deductions — will be sent to your TSA provider and you will have a $0.00 paycheck.

Note: Use only Adobe Reader to open and complete pdf forms.

You must print the SRA and sign it. Please make a copy for your records and send or fax the original to your human resources office. The address and fax number are provided on page two of the SRA.


Contributions

Under the UW TSA 403(b) Program, you can invest on a pre-tax and/or post-tax (Roth) basis for Fidelity, TIAA, T. Rowe Price, and Lincoln and on a pre-tax basis for Ameriprise.

Pre-tax

Contributions deducted from your earnings on a pre-tax basis reduce your current taxable income. Both your contributions and your earnings grow on a tax-deferred basis. When you withdraw money from your account, it is taxed as regular income to you in the year you receive it.

After-tax (Roth)

Contributions deducted from your earnings on a post-tax (Roth) basis are included in taxable income in the year they are made, but the account balance and earnings are not taxed when you take the money out in retirement (subject to certain restrictions). Only TIAA, Fidelity, T. Rowe Price, and Lincoln offer the Roth option.


Limits

The following limits should be considered when enrolling with the UW TSA 403(b) Program.

Minimum contribution limits for 2017 and 2018 are:

  • $8.00 per biweekly paycheck
  • $20.00 per monthly paycheck

2017 

  • If under age 50: $18,000
  • If age 50 or older at any time during the year: $24,000 (includes an additional $6,000 catch-up)

2018

  • If under age 50: $18,500
  • If age 50 or older at any time during the year: $24,500 (includes an additional $6,000 catch-up)

You may contribute an additional $3,000 per year ($15,000 max over a minimum of five years) if:

  • You have 15 years or more of service with the UW; and
  • Your TSA contributions average less than $5,000 per year over the course of your UW employment.

By IRS rule, the $3,000 (per year) service catch-up is considered used prior to the $6,000 age 50 and over catch-up.

Check with your human resources office to see if you qualify.

Contributions to Other Savings Plans

Contributions to a 457 deferred compensation plan do not affect your 403(b) limit. You may contribute the full amount to both types of plans.

You may also contribute the full amount to a personal IRA, either traditional or Roth.

402(g) Limit – Elective Deferrals

However, your UW TSA 403(b) contribution limit is reduced dollar for dollar by contributions you make to any of the following retirement savings plans: other 403(b), 401(k), SIMPLE IRA, SIMPLE 401(k), salary reduction SEP IRAs, and Federal Thrift Savings.

415(c) Limit – Annual Additions

Please note: If you own more than 50% of a business, then retirement contributions made on your behalf by that business must be aggregated with your UW TSA 403(b) contributions and are limited by the 415(c) limit – $54,000 in 2017 and $55,000 in 2018. Your 403(b) contributions made under the Age 50 catch-up are not included when calculating the 415(c) limit.

If you have questions, please email the TSA Plan Administrator at uwshr@uwsa.edu to be sure you have not exceeded IRS contribution limits.


Investments

The University strives to provide you with the best resources and programs to meet your individual investment needs. Although TSA staff is not able to provide financial advice, you can look at our guide on How to Choose a Financial Planner for some tips.

The fees and expenses of the investments you select have an impact on the overall returns of your investment portfolio, so the University reviews the investment options available to you, and works with our providers to make sure you have the lowest fees and expenses possible. None of the mutual funds in our plan have sales commissions or broker, marketing, or advertising fees.

Click on the headings below to learn more about low-cost share classes (offered by three of our providers) and view the latest investment returns.

Each investment company incurs operating expenses when it manages your investments. These expenses are taken out of the fund’s assets and affect the overall rate of return. The measure of what it costs an investment company to manage its funds is referred to as an expense ratio. Typically, the lower the expense ratio, the greater the rate of return to you – the investor.

Fidelity, TIAA, and T. Rowe Price offer mutual funds with institutional (low-cost) share classes to UW TSA participants. Fidelity refers to these low-cost share classes as "K share" classes. TIAA also offers the lowest-cost tier or annuity products in the UW TSA Program. Due to the amount of money invested in these companies by UW employees, you qualify to purchase these low-cost shares and annuity products through the TSA 403(b) Program.

Funds with institutional class shares have the same management team and investment objectives as the funds in other share classes but the expense ratios are lower. You cannot invest in low-cost share classes in your personal retirement investments outside of the UW TSA Program. Access to low-cost funds provides a great advantage for UW TSA Program participants.

All the pre-diversified target retirement date funds -- Fidelity Freedom Funds, TIAA Lifecycle Funds, and T. Rowe Price Retirement Funds -- are available as part of the lower-cost share class offering. The other Fidelity, TIAA, and T. Rowe Price funds, including those being offered with the lower-cost share classes, are noted on the UW TSA Investment Returns below.

The investment returns below provide a list of the investment products that are authorized for UW employees under the TSA Program. Except as otherwise noted, the data contained in the reports have been provided by the investment companies based on information gathered through June 30, 2017. Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of these reports. The UW cannot guarantee complete accuracy and assumes no responsibility for the information supplied by the companies or financial losses incurred by employees participating in the TSA Program.

Except for fixed annuities, your TSA investments are not guaranteed. You could lose money. When selecting investments, consider spreading your money among different kinds of assets. Some funds such as target retirement date funds and asset allocation funds are already diversified. Remember, past performance is no guarantee of future results.

Investment Returns (06/30/2017)

Selected Investment Returns is a partial list of the investment options available to you, sorted into the most important investment categories to help you choose funds for a diversified portfolio.


Distribution

The IRS regulates and limits the access you have to your retirement savings. You may withdraw your contributions (take a distribution) only when you:

  • leave employment with the UW System,
  • reach age 59 ½ — even if you are still working, or
  • become disabled.

Once you meet the eligibility criteria above, you have three options to manage your UW TSA 403(b) Program assets. Make sure to explore the pros and cons of each before making a decision.

  • Leave your assets with your provider in the UW TSA Program.
  • Roll over to another plan with a new employer or to an Individual Retirement Account (IRA).
  • Cash out. Get immediate access to your retirement savings, minus 20% withholding and possible early withdrawal penalties under age 59 ½.

To access your money, contact your TSA provider(s). Withdrawals from TIAA, Fidelity, and T. Rowe Price may be initiated over the phone; TIAA and Fidelity also provide online distribution requests. To withdraw your money from Lincoln or Ameriprise, you must use their form.

Please note: a signature from the UW Plan Administrator is NOT required for any of the current TSA providers — just complete the form, sign it, and submit it directly to the TSA provider.

Only providers no longer active in our Program (frozen providers) — Wells Fargo (Strong), Scudder (DWS), American United Life, and Security Benefit Life — require a signature from the UW Plan Administrator. Dreyfus does not require a signature once the participant is 59 ½ or older.

The money you take out from your pre-tax TSA accounts is taxed as regular income to you in the year you receive it:

  • Withdrawals before age 59 ½ may result in tax penalties.
  • If you terminate UW employment at age 55 or older – even though you are not 59 ½ – you may take distributions from your UW TSA pre-tax accounts without being subject to the 10% tax penalty for early withdrawal.

Withdrawals from your Roth after-tax 403(b) account are tax-free as long as you meet the IRS restrictions:

  • You must have had the account open at least five years from your first Roth contribution, and
  • You must be at least 59 ½ years old.

If you need access to your money and you can’t or don’t want to take a distribution, you may be eligible to take a loan from your TSA account.

Loans are available from Fidelity, T. Rowe Price, TIAA, Ameriprise/RiverSource, and Lincoln.

To start the loan process, contact your TSA provider. Each provider has its own loan procedure. In the UW TSA Program, you may have up to two outstanding loans at any time, either both from the same provider or one each from different providers.

In most cases, you must begin receiving income from your TSA account by April 1 of the year after you turn 70 ½. If you neglect to take the distribution, you will incur a 50% tax penalty on the minimum amount you should have received. Your investment provider will calculate your minimum required distribution upon request.

NOTE: If you are still working at the UW at age 70 ½, you do not need to take a distribution from your UW TSA until April 1 of the year following your termination of employment. (If you have accounts with previous employers or IRAs, you should begin taking distributions on those accounts by April 1 of the year after you turn 70 ½.)


Rollovers & Transfers

If you have funds in an account from a previous employer or you have funds with one of our frozen providers, you may benefit from moving that money to a current provider with the UW TSA 403(b) Program. Consider the following information based on your situation:

If you are permitted to withdraw your money from your former plan, you can roll it into an account with a UW TSA investment provider.

Money that you roll in to your UW TSA 403(b) account will be treated like other 403(b) money for all tax purposes, except that you may be allowed to withdraw it before terminating employment or reaching age 59 ½, usually with a 10% tax penalty.  

The UW TSA Program will accept money from 401(a) "qualified" plans, 401(k), 403(a), 403(b), 457 governmental deferred compensation plans, and Thrift Savings Plans, as well as from traditional (pre-tax), SEP and SIMPLE IRAs. Be aware that if you roll your 457 account into a non-457 plan, it becomes subject to the 10% early withdrawal penalty, which could otherwise not apply.

If you decide to roll over a retirement account, elect a direct rollover, in which the money is paid directly to the new plan. Otherwise, 20% of the account will be withheld for income tax. 

To get started, contact your former plan or employer to get distribution paperwork. You may also need roll-in paperwork from your current UW TSA 403(b) Program provider.

Note: Roth IRAs can only be rolled into other Roth IRAs by federal regulation.

You may move your money within the UW TSA 403(b) Program from one provider to another. Since frozen providers no longer accept contributions, you may want to consolidate your account with a current provider. If you don't have an account with the new TSA provider, sign up before you start the transfer process. To begin the transfer process, call the new provider and ask for a 403(b) transfer request. Complete the form(s) and return them to the new provider. Your new provider is responsible for contacting the old provider and requesting the money.

Exception: If you are transferring money from Ameriprise/RiverSource or Lincoln you must use their form. You'll also need the new provider's form. Complete both and send them to your new company. Alert your new provider that it must submit the Ameriprise/RiverSource or Lincoln form.

Below is contact information for the frozen providers (current provider information can be found in the Overview).

If you would like more information, please take a look at our Tips for Transfers and, if you have questions, contact UWSHR (uwshr@uwsa.edu).


FAQ

Looking for more information or have a specific question? Take a look at our Question & Answer Guide or our FAQ page for more information!


TSA Review Committee

The TSA Review Committee (TSARC) is a ten-member committee consisting of faculty, academic, and university staff that provides oversight of the program and advice on program issues. Nine members are appointed by the UW System President, and the chair of the Fringe Benefit Advisory Committee serves as an ex-officio member. The normal term for each appointment is three years. Appointments are staggered to provide continuity to the function of the TSARC. The chair and vice-chair are elected at the fall meeting of even-numbered years.

TSARC Members
NameInstitutionPhoneRoleAppointedTerm Expires
Kevin Bahr
(kbahr@uwsp.edu)
 UW-Stevens Point715-346-4062 Chair20018/2019
Anoop Dhingra
(dhingra@uwm.edu)
 UW-Milwaukee414-229-4089 20118/2017
Robert Kunkel
(kunkel@uwosh.edu)
 UW-Oshkosh920-424-7191 20068/2018
Gigi Koenig
(gkoenig1@uwsuper.edu)
 UW-Superior 715-394-8014 20168/2019
J. Michael Collins
(jmcollins@wisc.edu)
 UW-Extension608-262-0369 20128/2018
Howard Erlanger
(hserlang@wisc.edu)
 UW-Madison 608-263-7405 Vice-Chair19938/2017
Rashiqa Kamal
(kamalr@uww.edu)
 UW-Whitewater262-472-5446 20108/2019
Kimberly Sipiorski
(sipiorsk@uwgb.edu)
 UW-Green Bay920-465-2196 20158/2017
Robert Wolf
(wolf.robe@uwlax.edu)
UW-La Crosse608-785-6654 20088/2018

Fringe Benefit Advisory Committee Chair

Vacant

   Ex-Officio