What to do before you leave your old job
Meet with your benefits counselor or review your current benefits to make sure you understand the following:
- Which benefits need to be replaced, such as health, disability, or life insurance
- Which benefits can be kept or transferred, such as a workplace savings plan
- When benefits such as health, disability, or life insurance will cease and how COBRA insurance can help fill a gap in coverage between your old and new job
- What compensation, if any, you are entitled to, including back pay, vacation days, sick pay, or future distributions
- What changes, if any, will you need to make to your budget
- Will you incur additional expenses (e.g., commuting costs, health care, etc.)
- Update your account information on your customer profile, including your address if you've moved and your new employer.
What to do with your old retirement savings plan
When you retire or change jobs, you have three options for your old 401(k) that can provide continued potential tax-deferred growth opportunities.1 Or, you can cash out; but, keep in mind that taxes will apply, plus possible withdrawal penalties.
- Roll over to a Fidelity IRA – Lets you consolidate your retirement accounts in one place, while continuing tax-deferred growth potential. With a Fidelity IRA, you have access to a wide range of investment options.
- Roll over to a new workplace plan (if permitted) – Lets you consolidate your 401(k)s into one account, while continuing tax-deferred growth potential. Investment options vary by plan.
- Stay in your old workplace plan (if permitted) – Lets you continue tax-deferred growth potential; however, you can no longer contribute to the old plan. Investment options vary by plan.
For many investors, rolling over old workplace savings accounts to an IRA may offer the most compelling benefits for managing retirement savings. It’s also important to review investments at least once a year and rebalance as necessary.
- Learn about options for your old workplace savings plans.
- Learn more about IRAs and consider the advantages of transferring your IRA to Fidelity.
- If you have appreciated company stock, call 800-343-3548 to learn about possible appropriate net unrealized appreciation (NUA) strategies.
What to do when you start your new job
Take the time to understand your new employer’s benefit options so that you can make the right decisions for you. Then be sure to take the following actions:
- Enroll in your new workplace savings plan as soon as possible, take full advantage of any employer match, and, if possible, increase your contribution to the maximum allowed.
- Choose the health insurance coverage option that best meets your health care needs.
- Review life and disability insurance coverage to ensure that you have adequate protection.
- Review the beneficiary designations on your insurance policies and retirement accounts.
- Learn about Life Insurance from Fidelity.
If you are a small-business owner
- Compare Small-Business Retirement Plans to consider a Fidelity retirement plan that might be right for your business.