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The City and County of San Francisco 457(b) Deferred Compensation Plan is a powerful tool to help you reach your retirement dreams. As a supplement to other retirement benefits or savings that you may have, this voluntary Plan allows you to save and invest extra money for retirement... tax-deferred!

Not only will you defer taxes immediately, you may build extra savings consistently and automatically, have a variety of investment options to select from, and learn more about saving and investing for your financial future.

Read these highlights to learn more about your Plan, and how simple it is to enroll.

Getting Started


What is a 457 deferred compensation plan?
A 457 Plan1 is a retirement savings plan that allows eligible employees to supplement any existing retirement and pension benefits by saving and investing pre-tax dollars through a voluntary salary contribution. Contributions and any earnings on contributions are tax-deferred until money is withdrawn. Distributions are usually taken after retirement when many participants are typically receiving less income, and may be in a lower income tax bracket than while working. Distributions are subject to ordinary income tax.

1 All references to the 457 plan are to a governmental 457(b) plan.

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Why should I participate in the City and County of San Francisco 457(b) Deferred Compensation Plan?
You may want to participate if you are interested in saving and investing additional money for retirement and/or reducing the amount of current state and federal income tax you pay each year. Your City and County of San Francisco 457(b) Deferred Compensation Plan can be an excellent tool to help make your future more secure.

You may also qualify for a federal income tax credit by participating in this Plan. For more information about this tax credit, please contact your Great-West Retirement Services® representative.

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Is there any reason why I should not participate in the Plan?
Participating may not be advantageous if you are experiencing financial difficulties, have excessive debt, do not have an adequate emergency fund (typically in an easy-to-access account), or if you expect to be in a higher tax bracket during your retirement.

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Who is eligible to enroll?
All current full-time and part-time benefited employees of the City and County of San Francisco are immediately eligible to participate in the Plan.

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How do I enroll?
Complete the appropriate enrollment forms indicating the amount you wish to contribute, your investment option selection(s), and a beneficiary designation(s). These are available from your Payroll office and on the Plan Web site at www.sfdcp.org.2 Please return the form(s) to your Great-West Retirement Services representative.

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What are the contribution limits?
In 2011, the maximum contribution amount is 100% of your includible compensation as defined by the Internal Revenue Code, less any mandatory before-tax contributions to a governmental pension plan, or $16,500, whichever is less.

Participants in the SFDCP have two different opportunities to catch up and contribute more during the final years of their career. "Age 50+ Catch-Up" allows participants in the three calendar years prior to normal retirement age to contribute more (up to double the annual contribution limit—$33,000 in 2011) to the 457 Plan.

The additional amount that you may be able to contribute under the Age 50+ Catch-Up option will depend upon the amounts that you were able to contribute in previous years but did not.

Also, participants turning age 50 or older in 2011 may contribute an additional $5,500. You may not use the Age 50+ Catch-Up provision and the Special 3 year Catch-Up provision in the same year.

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What are my investment options?
A wide array of core investment options is available through your Plan. Each option is explained in further detail in your Plan's fund data sheets. Investment option information is also available through the Web site at www.sfdcp.org and KeyTalk®, toll free at (888) SFDCP4U (888-733-2748). The Web site and KeyTalk® are available to you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.2

In addition to the core investment options, a Self-Directed Brokerage Account (SDBA) option account is available through TD Ameritrade, Inc. . The SDBA allows you to select from numerous mutual funds for additional fees. These securities are not offered through GWFS Equities, Inc. The SDBA is intended for knowledgeable investors who acknowledge and understand the risks associated with the investments contained in the SDBA.

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Managing Your Account

How do I keep track of my account?
Great-West Retirement Services will mail you a quarterly account statement showing your account balance and activity. You can also check your account balance and move money between investment options on the Web site at www.sfdcp.org or by calling KeyTalk® at (888) SFDCP4U (888-733-2748).2 You will also receive quarterly statements on your SDBA account, from your SDBA provider. The SDBA provider will send you a monthly statement if you have account activity.

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How do I make investment option changes?
Use your Personal Identification Number3 (PIN) and Username to access the Web site or you can use your Social Security Number and PIN to access KeyTalk®.2 You can move all or a portion of your existing balances between investment options (subject to Plan rules) and change how your payroll contributions are invested.

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How do I make contribution changes?
You can obtain a Payroll Deduction Authorization/Cancellation form from your Great-West Retirement Services representative or the Plan web site at www.sfdcp.org. under the Forms tab. Return the completed, signed form to the San Francisco Employees' Retirement System (address in listed on the top of the form). No faxes will be accepted.

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Rollovers

May I roll over my account from my former employer's plan?
Yes. But only approved balances from an eligible governmental 457(b), 401(k), 403(b) or 401(a) plan or an Individual Retirement Account (IRA) may be rolled over to the Plan. Please check with your Great-West Retirement Services representative regarding any applicable fees on the rollover account.

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May I roll over my account if I leave employment with my current employer?
If you sever employment with your current employer, you may roll over your account balance to another eligible governmental 457(b), 401(k), 403(b) or 401(a) plan if your new employer's plan accepts such rollovers. You may also roll over your account balance to an IRA.

Please keep in mind that if you roll over your 457 Plan balance to a 401(k), 403(b) or 401(a) plan or an IRA, distributions taken before age 59½ may also be subject to the 10% early withdrawal federal tax penalty. Please contact your Great-West Retirement Services representative for more information.

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Vesting

When am I vested in the Plan?
Vesting refers to the percentage of your account you are entitled to receive from the Plan upon the occurrence of a distributable event. Your contributions to the Plan and any earnings they generate are always 100% vested (including rollovers from previous employers). All contributions from the City and County are also immediately 100% vested.

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Distributions

When can I receive a distribution from my account?
Qualifying distribution events are as follows:

  • Retirement;
  • Permanent disability;
  • Unforeseeable emergency within the Plan guidelines (as defined by the Internal Revenue Code and if allowed by your Plan's provisions);
  • Severance of employment (as defined by Internal Revenue Code provisions);
  • Attainment of age 70½ (if allowed by your Plan);
  • Death (your beneficiary receives your benefits);
  • In-service transfer to purchase service credit.
Each distribution is subject to ordinary income tax except for an in-service transfer to purchase service credit.

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What are my distribution options?
You have flexibility in deciding the start date of your distributions when you sever employment and can tailor a payment schedule to meet your personal financial planning needs. When you are eligible for a distribution, you may:

  1. Leave the value of your account in the Plan until a future date;
  2. Depending on the terms of your Plan you may be able to receive payment in the following form:
    • periodic payments;
    • fixed annuity payments (annuities are offered through Great-West Life & Annuity);
    • partial lump sum with remainder paid as periodic payments or annuity payments;
    • a lump sum;
  3. Roll over your account balance to an eligible governmental 457(b), 401(k), 403(b) or 401(a) plan or to an IRA.

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What happens to my account when I die?
Your designated beneficiary(ies) will receive the remaining value of your account, if any. Your beneficiary(ies) must contact a Great-West Retirement Services representative to request a distribution.

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Fees

Are there any recordkeeping or administrative fees to participate in the Plan?
There are no recordkeeping or administrative fees for the Plan.

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Are there any fees for the investment options?
Each investment option has an investment management fee that varies by investment option. These fees are deducted by each investment option's management company before the daily price or performance is calculated. Fees pay for trading individual securities in the underlying investment options and other management expenses. There are additional quarterly fees and/or transaction fees to participate in the SDBA. Funds may impose redemption fees on certain transfers, redemptions or exchanges.

Are there any distribution fees?
For the Plan, there are no distribution fees. Before making a distribution, contact your Great-West Retirement Services representative to get more information.

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Taxes

How does my participation in the Plan affect my taxes?
Because your contributions are taken out of your paycheck before taxes are calculated, you pay less in current income tax. You do not report any current earnings or losses on your account on your current income tax return either. Your account is tax-deferred until you withdraw money, usually at retirement.

Distributions from the Plan are taxable as ordinary income during the years in which they are distributed or made available to you or to your beneficiary(ies).

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Investment Assistance

Can I get help with my investment decisions?
Employees of Great-West Retirement Services and the City and County of San Francisco cannot give investment advice. There are financial calculators and tools on the Web site that can help you determine which investment options might be best for you if you would like to construct your Plan account yourself.

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1 All references to the 457 Plan are to a governmental 457(b) plan.
2 Transfer requests made via the Web site or KeyTalk® received on business days prior to close of the New York Stock Exchange (4:00 p.m. Eastern Time or earlier on some holidays or other special circumstances) will be initiated at the close of business the same day the request was received. The actual effective date of your transaction may vary depending on the investment option selected. Access to KeyTalk® and the Web site may be limited or unavailable during periods of peak demand, market volatility, systems upgrades and maintenance, or other reasons.
3 The account owner is responsible for keeping the assigned PIN confidential. Please contact Great-West Retirement Services immediately if you suspect any unauthorized use.

Securities, when offered, are offered through GWFS Equities, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Great-West Life & Annuity Insurance Company. Investment options are offered through mutual funds and/or a group fixed and variable deferred annuity issued by Great-West Life & Annuity Insurance Company. Great-West Retirement Services® refers to products and services provided by Great-West Life & Annuity Insurance Company and its subsidiaries and affiliates.