RETIREMENT & LONGEVITY
Washington Policy Analyst Ed Mills outlines key components of the new legislation.
The year-end fiscal 2023 government funding bill contained legislation that makes the most significant changes to the U.S. retirement savings system in decades. The SECURE Act 2.0 legislation builds on retirement savings changes passed in 2019 and contains new provisions that further raise the required minimum distribution (RMD) age, shift to automatic plan enrollment and provide for new matching/emergency withdrawal opportunities. Most of the key provisions are effective in the 2024-2025 timeframe, but smaller adjustments (such as an increase in the RMD age to 73) will be effective in 2023. See below for a detailed overview of the key provisions in the legislation and the effective timelines.
SECURE Act 2.0 is the second bipartisan bill designed to boost access to retirement savings
The SECURE Act 2.0 is a follow-up bill to the original SECURE Act passed in 2019, which began the process of increasing the RMD age from 70 1/2 and increasing participation in retirement savings plans through various tax incentives and eased administrative rules for employer-sponsored retirement plans.
The new legislation goes well beyond the original iteration and seeks to expand participation in retirement savings plans through mandatory enrollments as well as increased flexibility in the individual use of advantaged savings accounts. The new legislation will also extend the savings timeframe before RMDs are required to 75 by 2033 – an almost five-year increase from the original RMD distribution age. Overall, the changes enacted by the legislation (to be phased in over a multi-year period) are likely to boost the asset base for asset managers through increased participation and interest in retirement savings plans.
Key changes will be phased in over a multi-year period
The most significant changes to the U.S. retirement savings system enacted as part of the recent legislation include a higher RMD age (rising to 75 by 2033), a shift to automatic enrollment for new retirement plans, an allowance for matching contributions to be made for student loan payments (expanding the retirement savings of younger adults), higher catch-up limits for those ages 60-63, and additional opportunities for penalty-free withdrawals/lower penalties for missed RMDs that are corrected.
Starting in 2025, eligible employees will be automatically enrolled into new employer-sponsored retirement plans. Contributions will be set with enrollment between 3-10%, rising by 1% each year unless employees elect to opt out. Under-the-radar provisions include an expansion of multiple employer plans (MEPs) and pooled employer plans (PEPs) to include 403(b)s, 529 to Roth IRA rollovers (max $35,000), and employer-offered de minimis financial incentives (such as gift cards or other financial awards) to increase employee participation in retirement plans.
Detailed descriptions of the key provisions as follows: