Planning ahead: Understanding retirement plan loans. Plan Participant Guide

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1 Planning ahead: Understanding retirement plan loans Plan Participant Guide

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3 What is a retirement plan loan? More than eight out of 10 Americans that s over 70 million individuals take advantage of the retirement plan offered to them.¹ You might have considered borrowing from your employer-sponsored retirement plan account balance for a large purchase, such as a car or debt consolidation. However, when you borrow from your account, you receive the money as a loan. You repay the loan and loan interest to your account over time. ¹National Compensation Survey: Employee Benefits in Private Industry in the United States, U.S. Department of Labor, August Retirement plan loan basics What should I consider when taking a retirement plan loan? There are several factors to consider before taking a loan from your employer-sponsored retirement plan: Once the money is borrowed, you will lose the potential for those funds to grow You repay the loan with after-tax dollars, losing the tax advantage of those pretax contributions borrowed There may be fees associated with the loan You may be inclined to reduce ongoing contributions in order to meet loan repayment requirements The real cost While it may be possible to take a loan from your employer-sponsored retirement plan, the real cost of doing so may be higher than you think. Be sure to consider all of the facts when deciding whether to borrow from your account. Taking a loan 1 Without a loan 2 Loan amount $5,000 $0 Loan period 5 years 0 years Loan interest rate 7.00% 0% Actual interest rate cost of loan % 0% Account balance after 30 years $835,195 $1,020,849 In this hypothetical example, the following assumptions were used: Assumes bi-weekly contributions of $150 (including employer match) from age 35 through 65, except during the loan, where noted. 1 Taking a loan: Assumes a loan of $5,000 taken at age 35 and bi-weekly contributions of $50 during the five-year loan period. After the loan period, bi-weekly contributions would be increased to $ Without a loan: Assumes bi-weekly contributions of $150 for the entire 30 years and no loans of any kind are taken from the plan. 3 Assumes a total tax rate of 25%.

4 When you decide to borrow funds from your employer-sponsored retirement plan, you may be wondering how it works. How do I borrow money from my account? If you take a loan, you must complete a loan application. Check with your employer or Lincoln representative for the necessary form(s). Is there an initial fee for the loan? In many cases, there is an initial set-up fee to cover loan processing expenses. The fee is usually added to the amount requested on the loan application. How much can I borrow? It depends on your specific plan guidelines, the amount of your account balance, and the amount of any plan loans you currently have outstanding. In many cases, the loan minimum is $1,000 and the maximum is 50% of your vested account balance, not to exceed $50,000. When will I get my loan money? Checks for borrowed funds are typically issued within seven calendar days after Lincoln receives your completed loan application. Will I have to pay interest on my loan? Yes. When you request a loan, you will be provided with loan information. The current loan interest rate, which is fixed for the life of the loan, will be included in this information. Can I have more than one loan? Many plans allow you to maintain multiple loans. Check your plan for specific details. Once you re ready to repay your loan, you may have some additional questions. How do I repay the loan? Depending on your plan, your repayments will be made through electronic fund transfers or payroll deductions. How long do I have to pay my loan back? Generally, you can repay your loan over a period of five years. If you use your loan for specific purposes outlined by the IRS, such as to purchase your primary residence, you may have longer to repay the loan. Check with your employer for plan specifics.

5 Can I still make regular contributions to my account while I m repaying the loan? Yes! To keep on track with your retirement goals, you should continue to make contributions to your plan. Missing even a small number of contributions can significantly affect your ending account balance, which may affect when you ll be able to retire. Can I make extra payments or pay my loan back in full before the due date? Yes. You can make extra loan payments at any time, or pay the entire balance at any time. If you make additional payments, they are applied first to any interest and principal due. Any remaining amount will be applied to unpaid principal. Can I skip a payment? No. Payments are required to be made according to your predetermined payment schedule. What happens if I miss a payment? If you have not made a payment for 90 days, your loan will be considered in default. In addition, a defaulted loan balance is reported to the IRS as taxable income to you. What happens if I die before I ve repaid my loan? The outstanding loan balance will be taxable to the estate, and your beneficiary(s) will receive your account balance less the outstanding loan balance. What happens if I ve overpaid my loan? If you overpay your total loan balance, you may be issued a refund check. See your plan for specific details. How does a loan affect my federal income tax? A loan is not considered taxable income to you as long as you make your scheduled payments and the loan does not default. However, if your loan defaults, the amount (default plus accrued interest) will be reported as a taxable distribution and you ll receive a Form 1099-R.

6 To borrow or not? Deciding whether or not to borrow funds from your employer-sponsored retirement plan is a decision you should weigh carefully. While many plans allow a loan provision, it s important to remember the actual cost of taking those funds out. While you may pay the loan back with interest, those funds may have earned a better rate if they had remained invested in your account. Be sure to consider the full range of factors when borrowing funds and decide if it s a step you feel good about taking. Talk to your financial professional today. You also have access to personal help regarding employer-sponsored retirement plans, spanning from enrollment through the building years and beyond. The Lincoln LifeSpan learning program provides one-onone guidance for retirement planning assistance as well as seminars, print materials, and Internet tools all geared to unique learning styles and changing needs over time. You can also meet with a retirement professional for personal help compliments of your employer.

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8 A tradition of integrity At Lincoln Financial Group, we have a heritage of helping companies find solutions to their funding and benefit needs with the same honesty, integrity, and responsibility that you d expect from our namesake. It s a legacy that we proudly and respectfully continue each day. The strength of Lincoln Financial Group affiliates We believe our continued commitment to strength and stability is indispensable to who we are and critical to your confidence in us. We pride ourselves on being able to identify and deliver sophisticated financial strategies and product solutions for the creation, protection, and utilization of capital. We are committed to assist companies in helping their employees and their families redefine their retirement because we don t believe retirement is an end it s an opportunity for everyone to start doing what they were meant for all along. Not a deposit Not FDIC-insured Not insured by any federal government agency Not guaranteed by any bank or savings association May go down in value 2010 Lincoln National Corporation > Employer Retirement Plans Lincoln Financial Group is the marketing name for Lincoln National Corporation and its affiliates. Affiliates are separately responsible for their own financial and contractual obligations. LCN EM-GEN EM-LOAN-BRC001_Z01 ECG 1/10 Z01 Order code: EM-LOAN-BRC001 This material was prepared to support the promotion and marketing of retirement products. Lincoln Financial Group affiliates, their distributors, and their respective employees, representatives, and/or insurance agents do not provide tax, accounting, or legal advice. Any tax statements contained herein were not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used for the purpose of avoiding U.S. federal, state, or local tax penalties. Please consult your own independent advisor as to any tax, accounting, or legal statements made herein. Two separate companies issue Lincoln retirement products. Products sold in New York are issued by Lincoln Life & Annuity Company of New York, Syracuse, NY, and distributed by Lincoln Financial Distributors, Inc., a broker/dealer. For all other states, products are issued by The Lincoln National Life Insurance Company, Fort Wayne, IN.

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