MA Nonprofits: Getting to Know the CORE Plan
What is CORE?
The Connecting Organizations to Retirement (CORE) Plan was launched in late 2017 as a 401(k) option for Massachusetts nonprofit organizations. It is a state-sponsored program that was developed in collaboration with the Massachusetts Nonprofit Network using the best practices of large retirement plans but designed to keep costs low for both employers and employees. The CORE Plan is structured as a 401(k) Multiple Employer Plan (MEP) under which the Office of the State Treasurer acts as the CORE Plan Sponsor and assumes many of the administrative and investment responsibilities on behalf of the participating employers and employees. The investment structure of the CORE Plan is developed and monitored by an independent investment consultant acting as a fiduciary under ERISA.
Benefits of CORE
The CORE Plan gives nonprofits the ability to focus their time and energy on the primary goals of their organization while offering a comprehensive program to their employees including:
- ERISA protection for employees.
- Higher contribution limits compared to an IRA.
- Automatic features that encourage participants to start saving early.
- A dedicated representative available to consult with employers.
- A diversified portfolio.
Eligibility for CORE
As an employer, you may be eligible to offer the CORE Plan to your employees if:
- You are registered as a 501(c) organization with the IRS.
- Your registered address is in Massachusetts.
- You are registered as a nonprofit corporation with the Secretary of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
- Your organization in “good standing” as determined by required annual filings (M.G.L.A. c180 § 26A; 950 CMR § 106.13) with the Secretary of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
- You have 20 or fewer employees.
- Your payroll is administered by an eligible third-party payroll service (e.g., Paychex, ADP, etc.).
Additional information can be found at www.ma-employer-core.com. To learn about retirement options for your nonprofit, please contact the team at MFA.
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