The Catholic University of America

Inside CUA Nameplate

HR Focus


Have You Reviewed Your TIAA-CREF Strategy for 2013?

By Christine Sportes, Associate Vice President/Chief Human Resources Officer


Now that you have completed your annual enrollment for benefits, such as health, dental, vision, and other insurance options, it’s once again time to think about the best strategy for managing your retirement plan benefits during the upcoming year. Unlike other benefit plan options, you can make changes to your TIAA-CREF retirement plan throughout the year, but it’s best to formulate your strategy in alignment with the calendar or tax year. Generally, each calendar year the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announces increases for dollar limitations on benefits and contributions. During 2012, employees were able to make tax-sheltered plan contributions up to a maximum of $17,000. For those 50 or older, an additional “catch-up” amount of up to $5,500 was allowed, bringing the total maximum pre-tax contribution to $22,500. For 2013, the IRS has increased the pre-tax contribution limit to $17,500. For those 50 or older, the additional “catch-up” contribution remains $5,500, for a total pre-tax contribution limit of $23,000.

For those who may be interested in changing their pre-tax contribution amounts as of January 2013, please note you must submit your completed request form to the Office of Human Resources by 5 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 21, 2012. Requests submitted by this date will become effective as of Jan. 1, 2013. Requests submitted after Dec. 21 will be processed and become effective as of Feb. 1, 2013. Authorization for Salary Reduction for 2013 forms can be accessed at

Aside from planning your pre-tax contributions for 2013, you may be interested in professional advice from TIAA-CREF representatives who are available to meet with CUA employees. If you are interested in scheduling an on-campus consultation with a TIAA-CREF representative, please check the Office of Human Resources announcement Web page or contact the office at extension 5050 for information.