TIAA AND CREF ACCOUNTS
TIAA and CREF accounts are an important part of The University Savings program for campus personnel. Personnel savings in TIAA-CREF plans fund retirement annuities for employees of colleges, universities, nonprofit research organizations, independent schools, and related organizations. TIAA-CREF annuities are portable -- a feature that lets participants remain within the TIAA-CREF retirement system if they change employers among any of about 15,000 participating institutions.
You may contribute to the plans by salary reduction as long as you are receiving a salary from a participating employer.
- You may allocate your contributions between TIAA-CREF accounts as you choose.
- The total annual employee contribution must not exceed $16,500.
- Personnel age 50 or older may contribute an additional $5,500 to their TIAA-CREF account.
Your contribution is tax-sheltered.
Interest earned is tax-sheltered.
Contribution percentage may be changed at any time.
Saves federal and state taxes each pay check.
Becomes taxable upon receipt.
You may only withdraw funds prior to age 59½ for the following reasons:
- Retirement (age 55+)
- Financial hardship
Funds that you withdraw prior to age 59½ are subject to federal and state income taxes. Tax laws require a mandatory 20% withholding. Also, an additional tax penalty equal to 10% of the taxable portion of your withdrawal will be imposed.
In 1918, the Carnegie Foundation established TIAA as a nonprofit organization for the Advancement of Teaching with the cooperation of college teachers, administrators, and their national associations.
The TIAA Traditional Annuity guarantees a specified interest rate and provides the opportunity for additional dividends, as declared by its Board of Trustees. The income for TIAA's guarantees and dividends comes from direct loans to business and industry, publicly traded bonds, commercial real estate financing, and real estate investments.
In 1952, CREF was established as a companion nonprofit organization to complement TIAA's guarantees with a new kind of annuity. CREF developed the first variable annuity -- a common stock annuity that does not provide dollar guarantees but does increase the possibility of greater gains than from TIAA alone.
CREF provides investment opportunities in nine variable annuity accounts, eighteen mutual fund accounts and seven lifecycle funds.