How much can I Contribute to my 401k plans in 2021?

Offering 401k plans are the most easiest and effective way to save money for your retirement. The major benefit of this plan is that it allows you to save a significant amount on your retirement.

This money will be transferred into your account automatically. However, there is a limit to your contribution.

The Internal Revenue System (IRS) usually adjusts and reviews (in October or November) the maximum contribution limits for 401k plans. They also review the individual retirement plans and other savings plans for every person. Recently, they also introduced the updates for 2021.

If you want to know more about this subject, keep reading!

Basic limits of 401k plans


For 2020, the basic contribution for every employee was $19,500, including the elective salary deferrals and also the after-tax contributions. These all are contributions are specific to your Roth account including your 401k plans. There is no change to these basic limits in 2021.

Individuals owning multiple 401k plans cannot exceed their contributions both the Roth and the traditional ones more than the $19,500 limit.

However, making any contributions to any other retirement accounts will not affect your 401k contribution limits. For people whose age is more than 50 years or more, they can earn an extra $6,500. Though, this remains unchanged in 2021.

Contributions from employer

Another advantage of contributing to a 401k plan is that your employer will also be contributing to your plan as well. This means that for every one dollar contributed by the employee, the employer will also add that same amount on their behalf.

However, employers can make selective contributions though up to certain limits, irrespective of how much the employee can contribute. The total contribution on the basic limit for employer and employee for 2020 was $57,000, or 100% employee contributions. For people whose age is 50 or more, their basic limit is $63,500.

In 2021, this scenario has changed completely. The basic limit of employee and employer contributions is $58,000. For people over 50, the base limit has changed to $64,500, also including the catch-up amount of $6,500.

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Limits for High Salary Employees

People earning high salaries might be considered highly compensated employees. This is limited to more restricted contributions. However, for preventing highly paid employees to get advantages from tax benefits of 401k plans, the IRS is using the ADP test.

This is introduced to bring all employees to a proportionate level in the company’s plans. However, if the highly paid employees fail to contribute to the company’s plan, then the company can prevent their contribution.

Limits for 2020

It is a difficult and a tricky challenge to determine the contributions for the future and at the end of a calendar year. However, if you exceed the limits in 2020, then you need to notify the IRS by March 1, 2021. The time limit for returning the deferrals is April 15, 2021.

What are the Contribution Limits for 401k Plans in 2021?

Most of the country’s government has implemented that the Thrift Savings Plan to remain at $19,500 in 2021. The main criteria for the employees are to acquire knowledge about their maximum allowable contribution.

After this, you need to update your employee deferrals to your plans automatically. You can contribute the money into multiple accounts in a single year, but cannot exceed the limits set in your 401k plans.