TSP Catch-Up Contributions

If you are age 50 or over or will become 50 this calendar year, you may be eligible to make additional contributions to TSP, called “catch-up contributions".

In order to be eligible, you must be planning to contribute the maximum deferral amount for the year. The maximum deferral amount includes deferred traditional contributions and Roth contributions.
 
Catch-up contributions have their own annual maximum.  The contribution limits may change each year and may be found at the TSP website.

Catch-up contributions may be made as traditional or Roth contributions. Only basic pay may be contributed to TSP catch-up. Pay that is exempt for service in a combat zone may be contributed to Roth TSP catch-up but not to traditional TSP catch-up. Catch-up contributions, like regular contributions, must be made through payroll deduction
 
For the latest information, the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board has a fact sheet on catch-up contributions.

How to elect catch-up contributions

For the initial start of your catch-up contributions, if you have a current regular traditional or Roth election, you may use myPay to submit your elections.  myPay cannot be used to change the amount of the catch-up election or stop catch-up contributions, or if you do not have a current regular traditional or Roth election, submit a Form TSP-U-1-C to your finance office for these catch-up transactions. 

Note on myPay:  myPay does not display previously submitted catch-up elections. Your next Leave and Earnings Statement (LES) is the confirmation of your submission.

For Army, Navy and Air Force active component members and certain Navy reserve component members (those reservists with an ‘allotment’ block on their LES), submitting more than one election for Roth catch-up or more than one election for traditional catch-up may result in multiple elections and the total combined amount may be deducted from your pay.

When is the catch-up election effective?

For Army and Air Force reserve component members, and certain Navy reserve component members (if your LES does not have a block for allotments):  Your election will be effective when your pay account is updated following submission through myPay or submission of the form to your finance office.

For Army, Navy and Air Force active component members, and certain Navy reserve component members (those reservists with an ‘allotment’ block on their LES): TSP catch-up elections will be effective the calendar month after the month of submission.

If you need a Form TSP-U-1-C, get it here.

Catch-up elections are only valid through the end of the calendar year in which they are made; therefore, contributors must submit a new election each year. Catch-up elections may be started, changed or stopped any time of the year.
 
Catch-up contributions will be invested according to your most recent contribution allocation. Get the latest information from the Thrift Savings Plan website.

Updated June 29, 2015