Has your small business procrastinated in setting up a retirement plan? You might want to take a look at a SIMPLE IRA. SIMPLE stands for “savings incentive match plan for employees.” If you decide you’re interested in a SIMPLE IRA, you must establish it by no later than October 1 of the year for which you want to make your initial deductible contribution. (If you’re a new employer and come into existence after October 1, you can establish the SIMPLE IRA as soon as administratively feasible.)
Pros and Cons
Here are some of the basics of SIMPLEs: They’re available to businesses with 100 or fewer employees. They offer greater income deferral opportunities than individual retirement accounts (IRAs). However, other plans, such as SEPs and 401(k)s, may permit larger annual deductible contributions.
Participant loans aren’t allowed (unlike 401(k) and other plans that can offer loans). As the name implies, it’s simple to set up and administer these plans. You aren’t required to file annual financial returns.
Any employee who has compensation of at least $5,000 in any prior two years, and is reasonably expected to earn $5,000 in the current year, can elect to have a percentage of compensation put into a SIMPLE. An employee may defer up to $12,500 in 2016. This amount is indexed for inflation each year. Employees age 50 or older can make a catch-up contribution of up to $3,000 in 2016.
If your business has other employees, you may have to make SIMPLE IRA employer “matching” contributions. Consider your choices. A SIMPLE IRA might be a good choice for your small business but it isn’t the only choice. You might also be interested in setting up a simplified employee pension plan, a 401(k) or other plan.