It seems that all we have been doing for the past few months is talking about taxes. The Tax Reform & Job Act did, in fact, give us much to talk about. At one point, it appeared that the bill was going to do away, or significantly reduce, pre-tax savings opportunities currently available to eligible retirement plan participants.
The talk was that after-tax contributions would largely replace pre-tax contributions in 401(k)s, 403(b)s, and other defined contribution plans. In other words, they would have forced everyone into Roth IRA type of arrangements, where you don’t get the near-term incentive of saving on taxes, but the earnings would be tax-free. Fortunately, taxpayers retained the incentives and flexibility to decide for ourselves between pre-tax accounts that defer income taxes or post-tax alternatives that grow tax-free. With both alternatives still available, a common question remains.