FAQs on Retirement Savings in PA

What do you mean by retirement security?

Retirement security means having the resources to enjoy your golden years. The key to a comfortable retirement is a “three-legged stool” that counts:

               Leg 1      Social Security
               Leg 2      Personal Savings
               Leg 3      Employer-Sponsored Savings

Is there really a retirement income crisis?

Yes, unfortunately. More than 2 million Pennsylvanians work but don’t have access to an employer-sponsored retirement savings plan. Many of these hardworking brothers, sisters, parents, neighbors and friends work for small companies. Many are working families with low incomes.

What retirement savings options are out there now in PA?

Many private companies offer retirement investment plans in PA that can help individuals save on their own. However, the options are more challenging for those whose employers don’t sponsor a retirement savings plan.

What if PA chooses to implement a state-administered retirement plan but I don't want to participate in the program?

The beautiful thing about state-administered retirement security initiatives being developed around the country is people don’t have to participate. All they have to do is opt out of their state’s programs. Better — people who do opt out may opt in at a later time.

Isn’t Congress blocking these types of state-administered investment vehicles?

Unfortunately, they are. The good news is other states are proceeding with their own retirement security programs and we believe, with your support, Pennsylvania will be able to launch a valuable retirement vehicle someday soon.

Is any state-sponsored retirement security program available now in PA?

We wish, but there is no retirement security program available to Pennsylvanians, yet. This is a ground floor, grassroots effort to make retirement security a reality in Pennsylvania … no matter your age, income, race, religion, tattoos or piercings. And, at this point, all options are open.

Would a retirement savings program make me rich?

No, but it could play a big role in helping you maintain your lifestyle, and minimize costly taxpayer-funded social safety net services. As with any investment, past performance is not indicative of future results. But not investing a small percentage of your paycheck now will guarantee zero return later. That we know.

Pennsylvania isn’t doing so well with its state pensions. How would a state-administered retirement plan be different?

If it is established this way, your money would go into a retirement savings account administered by the Pennsylvania Treasury and managed by private, professional investment managers. All investment returns (minus certain necessary fees) would be deposited into your account. The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania would not be legally allowed to touch your money.

What if I had a state-administered retirement plan and changed jobs? Would I lose my retirement savings account and everything I’ve invested?

This is one of the great things about a state-administered retirement savings program. If it’s adopted, your retirement security account would be all yours and it would follow you to your next gig.

What can state governments do to improve retirement security options?

Lots of things! States can educate people about private retirement options. Some states are creating market places where the public can compare available plans. Others are working to administer plans for businesses that don’t sponsor ones of their own. Our goal is to find the solution that works best for Pennsylvania.