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Employer-qualified retirement plans, also called employer-sponsored retirement plans, are the second source of income you should consider when planning for retirement. You can think of the payouts from these plans as a series of delayed payments that you will receive during retirement for work you performed prior to retirement. There are many varieties of employer-qualified retirement plans; these plans can be an important part of your overall retirement plan.

A qualified retirement plan is a retirement plan that allows a company to make tax-deductible contributions to employees through either a defined-benefit plan or a defined-contribution plan. Some of these plans require no employee contributions and some of these plans require employee contributions that are employer matched. Employer-qualified retirement plans provide free money, which should be the highest priority for your retirement funds and investment funds.


When you have completed this section, you should be able to do the following:

  1. Explain employer-qualified retirement plans.
  2. Explain defined-benefit plans.
  3. Explain defined-contribution plans.

Understanding employer-qualified retirement plans is an important part of retirement planning.


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