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403(b) Plan Highlights for Lay Employees

Your financial health and well-being are important to the Archdiocese of Chicago. That’s why we offer you the Defined Contribution 403(b) Retirement Plan (the “Plan”) to help you pursue a rewarding financial future.

This plan highlights provides a general overview of the Plan and benefits that the Archdiocese provides such as matching contributions and a quarterly Share Plan contribution. If you have questions, or would like to take advantage of personalized retirement planning guidance, be sure to contact our retirement counselor, Julia Calderon. You can call to schedule an appointment at 312-244-0941312-244-0941, or send an email to

Enrollment and Eligibility

  • Your enrollment in the program is automatic, unless you decline participation within 30 days following your plan entry date.
  • Automatic enrollment is a process by which you are enrolled in your retirement program without taking any action. You can change the amount of your contributions, stop them altogether or redirect your investment options.
  • If automatically enrolled, you will be enrolled at a deferral rate of 3% of your eligible pay, which will be deducted from your paycheck and invested in the Vanguard Institutional Target Date Funds Footnote. Vanguard Institutional Target Date Funds are registered mutual funds. End footnote.
  • You are immediately eligible to enroll in the plan on your own and start your pre-tax or Roth after-tax savings prior to the automatic enrollment start date. This will allow you to invest in the funds of your choice from the start of your participation. In addition, you may contribute more to your account. Even an increase of one or two percent over the auto-enrollment deferral rate of 3% can have a significant impact on your savings.


Your Contributions

  • You may contribute 0 to 100% of your annual pay before taxes are deducted.
  • You may also make Roth contributions. To help you determine if Roth contributions are appropriate for you, use the Roth contribution calculator.
  • In 2020, federal tax law allows you to make a combined contribution of pre-tax and Roth contributions to your retirement plan up to $19,500.
  • If you will be at least 50 years old in 2020, you are also eligible to make an additional before-tax catch-up contribution of up to $6,500 per year.
  • You may change your contribution amount any time.

Employer's Contributions

The Archdiocese will match up to 50% of the first 4% of pay you contribute to the 403(b) Plan.

Additionally, under the Share Plan, the Archdiocese will make a quarterly contribution to eligible employees’ 403(b) retirement plan. Please read on for further information.

Archdiocese of Chicago Share Plan

Effective July 1, 2007, the Archdiocese of Chicago implemented the Share Plan contribution to replace the defined benefit pension plan for all full-time and benefits-eligible part-time employees. Under the Share Plan, the Archdiocese will make a quarterly contribution to the eligible employees' 403(b) retirement plan accounts based on total gross earnings. For eligible employees hired on or before June 30, 2007, the quarterly contribution will be an age-weighted percentage of the employees' gross earnings, and that percentage will increase as employees advance in age, based on age as of January 1st each year, in accordance with the following table:

Share Plan contributions by age, part 1 of 3, ages 21 to 45
Age Contribution %
21-36 1.25
37 1.338
38 1.445
39 1.56
40 1.69
41 1.82
42 1.97
43 2.12
44 2.29
45 2.48
Share Plan contributions by age, part 2 of 3, ages 46 to 55
Age Contribution %
46 2.68
47 2.89
48 3.12
49 3.37
50 3.64
51 3.93
52 4.25
53 4.59
54 4.95
55 5.35
Share Plan contributions by age, part 3, ages 56 to 65 and older
Age Contribution %
56 5.78
57 6.24
58 6.74
59 7.27
60 7.86
61 7.86
62 8.48
63 9.16
64 9.90
65 and older 10.69

Share Plan contributions for employees who became eligible or were hired on or after July 1, 2007 will be based on a flat percentage of gross earnings, regardless of age. The flat contribution may range from 1.25% to 5.0% as determined annually by the Archdiocese. The Share Plan will have a 5-year cliff vesting schedule; eligible employees will be fully vested after 5 consecutive years of benefits-eligible service, but will have no vesting for less than 5 consecutive years of benefits-eligible service.

Contribution Accelerator

The Plan’s contribution accelerator feature offers you an easy way to increase your contribution amount over time. Here’s how it works:

  • You are automatically enrolled in this feature unless you opt out.
  • Your contribution amount will increase by 1% annually, up to a 4% maximum.
  • You can opt out of this feature at any time.



"Vesting" refers to your ownership of the money in your account. You are always 100% vested in your own contributions.


This vesting schedule applies to the Archdiocese match.
Years of Service Percentage vested
After 1 25%
After 2 50%
After 3 75%
After 4 100%
This vesting schedule applies to the Share Plan contribution.
Years of Service Percentage vested
Less than 5 0%
After 5 100%


Access Your Money

You may be able to access money in your retirement program account through a loan, in-service withdrawal or hardship withdrawal.


Investment Options

View investment options


Auto Rebalancing

Your retirement plan offers auto rebalancing, an optional easy-to-use rebalancing feature. It ensures that the investment allocations you choose stay consistent until you, not market conditions or money managers, make a change. Rebalancing dates will appear on your retirement statement.

Plan Features—Ways to help you save

Targeted InvestingTarget-Date Funds—Investments that change as you do

An investment option that provides a diversified portfolio and then automatically re-allocates as you get closer to your estimated retirement date.

View your Target-Date Fund options

The target-date is the approximate date when investors plan to retire and may begin withdrawing their money. The asset allocation of the target-date funds will become more conservative as the target-date approaches by lessening the equity exposure and increasing the exposure in fixed income type investments. The principal value of an investment in a target-date fund is not guaranteed at any time, including the target-date. There is no guarantee that the fund will provide adequate retirement income.

A target-date fund should not be selected based solely on age or retirement date. Participants should carefully consider the investment objectives, risks, charges and expenses of any Fund before investing. Funds are not guaranteed investments and the stated asset allocation may be subject to change. It is possible to lose money by investing in securities, including losses near and following retirement.

Increase ContributionsContribution Accelerator—Simple, consistent, automatic saving

Help build your account balance faster by increasing your contributions each year. Use this feature and see how much automatic increases can help your savings grow.

Use the Contribution Accelerator

Types of ContributionsYou have two ways to save

In addition to traditional pre-tax contributions, you can make Roth after-tax contributions to your account.

Learn more about Roth after-tax contributions

Archdiocese of Chicago 403(b) Retirement Plans for Priests and Laity Plan Resources & Quick Actions


Get all plan communications, forms and documents here.

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Get contact info for your plan counselors and administrators.

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Register to review your account details.

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View account details, customized planning tools and more.

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