Review Funding For Your Retirement Accounts In 2022

Monday, February 28, 2022

By Susan Kaplan

January is a great time to review contributions to your retirement plans. Starting in 2022, the maximum contribution that individual U.S. taxpayers can contribute to their 401(k) plans will increase to $20,500, up from $19,500 for 2021 and 2020. With the cost of living rising and increases in inflation, higher phase-out limits make many more taxpayers eligible for fully deductible contributions. For single taxpayers covered by a workplace retirement plan, the phase-out range is increased to $68,000 to $78,000, up from $66,000 to $76,000. Be sure you take full advantage of this tax benefit. Note the chart below detailing the new annual contribution limits for the more popular retirement programs.

Ideas for the New Year

If you have not already done so, consider:

  • Setting up new accounts for a spouse or dependent(s)
  • Reviewing the status of your retirement plan including beneficiaries
  • Consider other tax-advantaged plans like Flexible Spending Accounts (health care and dependent care) and prepaid medical savings plans like Health Savings Accounts.

Additional Changes for 2022

Taxpayers can deduct contributions to a traditional IRA if they meet certain conditions. If during the year either the taxpayer or the taxpayer’s spouse was covered by a retirement plan at work, the deduction may be reduced, or phased out, until it is eliminated, depending on filing status and income. (If neither the taxpayer nor the spouse is covered by a retirement plan at work, the phase-outs of the deduction do not apply.) Here are the phase-out ranges for 2022:

  • For single taxpayers covered by a workplace retirement plan, the phase-out range is increased to $68,000 to $78,000, up from $66,000 to $76,000.
  • For married couples filing jointly, if the spouse making the IRA contribution is covered by a workplace retirement plan, the phase-out range is increased to $109,000 to $129,000, up from $105,000 to $125,000.
  • For an IRA contributor who is not covered by a workplace retirement plan and is married to someone who is covered, the phase-out range is increased to $204,000 to $214,000, up from $198,000 to $208,000.
  • For a married individual filing a separate return who is covered by a workplace retirement plan, the phase-out range is not subject to an annual cost-of-living adjustment and remains $0 to $10,000.
  • The income phase-out range for taxpayers making contributions to a Roth IRA is increased to $129,000 to $144,000 for singles and heads of household, up from $125,000 to $140,000. For married couples filing jointly, the income phase-out range is increased to $204,000 to $214,000, up from $198,000 to $208,000. The phase-out range for a married individual filing a separate return who makes contributions to a Roth IRA is not subject to an annual cost-of-living adjustment and remains $0 to $10,000.
  • The amount individuals can contribute to their SIMPLE retirement accounts is increased to $14,000, up from $13,500.

What Remains Unchanged

The limit on annual contributions to an IRA remains unchanged at $6,000. The IRA catch-up contribution limit for individuals aged 50 and over is not subject to an annual cost-of-living adjustment and remains $1,000.

The catch-up contribution limit for employees aged 50 and over who participate in 401(k), 403(b), most 457 plans, and the federal government’s Thrift Savings Plan remains unchanged at $6,500. Therefore, participants in 401(k), 403(b), most 457 plans, and the federal government’s Thrift Savings Plan who are 50 and older can contribute up to $27,000, starting in 2022. The catch-up contribution limit for employees aged 50 and over who participate in SIMPLE plans remains unchanged at $3,000.

Reach Out to Us: A missed year is a missed opportunity that does not come back. This is the best time to review the yearly savings limits of your favored plan for 2022 and adjust your contributions. If you are 50 years or more, add the catch-up amount to your potential savings total to take full advantage of the savings opportunity. Take note of the income limits within each plan type. For traditional IRA’s, if your income is below the noted threshold, your taxable income is reduced by your contributions. The deductibility of your contributions is also limited if your spouse has access to a plan. In the case of Roth IRAs, the income limits restrict who can participate in the plan.