Several options exist for building your own tax-deferred retirement program.
The Individual Retirement Account is a voluntary retirement program with tax-deferral benefits available to a worker who is not covered by a retirement plan at his or her place of employment. The annual limit on deposits into an IRA is the lesser of 15 percent of total wages or $1,500.
A spousal IRA may be established for the spouse of a worker eligible for an IRA, provided the spouse is not employed or self-employed. Equal amounts must be deposted into the worker's IRA and the spousal IRA to be eligible for the tax break. The combined annual ceiling is 15 percent of the worker's wages or $1,750, whichever is less.
Keogh accounts are voluntary retirement programs with tax-deferral benefits available to self-employed persons. The deposit limit on Keogh plans is 15 percent of net income from self-employment, not to exceed an annual ceiling on contributions of $7,500.
This year, a new wrinkle has been added to do-it-yourself pensions: the Simplified Employe Pension. This is an employer-sponsored IRA in which the employer contributes a maximum of $7,500, or 15 percent of total pay, for himself and each employe. If the employer and the employe make contributions, the maximum allowable between them is $1,500 or 15 percent.
If the employe pays the whole thing, the maximum is $1,500, the same as the simple IRA.
The person who sets up the plan decides what investment form will be used for the contributions. Each contributor is entitled to a tax break in this case.
Antoher type of unrelated IRA is arollover. These are for individuals who receive lump-sum distributions of the entire balance in one year from a tax qualified savings, thrift, stock purchase, pension or similar programs.
The individual may be the beneficiary or the recipient of the distribution and all or part of the payout may be used to set up the tax-deferred IRA.