Duke offers two different types of retirement plans. Eligibility for participation in these plans is determined by whether you are paid biweekly or monthly. Both plans provide a comparable retirement income. Download a PDF showing how the plans differ.
Biweekly Paid Employees
Biweekly paid employees are eligible for two Duke retirement plans — the Employees' Retirement Plan and the Faculty and Staff Retirement Plan. The Employees' Retirement Plan is a traditional defined benefit pension plan paid for entirely by Duke. The Duke Faculty and Staff Retirement Plan is a 403(b) plan, funded by your voluntary pre-tax or Roth 403(b) after-tax contributions.
Monthly Paid Employees
Faculty and monthly paid staff are eligible for the Duke Faculty and Staff Retirement Plan. This 403(b) plan is funded both by your voluntary pre-tax or Roth 403(b) after-tax contributions and Duke's contributions.
Benefits of Investing in the Duke 403(b) Retirement Plan
By investing in your Duke 403(b) tax-qualified plan, you can save for your retirement through the following features:
Duke's Tiered Investment Program
Duke’s Investment Advisory Committee (IAC) selected the investment lineup. The role of the Investment Advisory Committee is to ensure that you have access to quality investment options at the lowest reasonable cost. The IAC is comprised of key Duke University and Duke University Health System administrators and faculty who work closely with expert consultants who specialize in investment management. The IAC has chosen a group of funds they will continue to regularly monitor to ensure that they remain appropriate investment options for Duke’s plan.
Your investment options are grouped in tiers to make it easier to navigate your investments. Funds in Tier 1 and Tier 2 have been specifically selected by the IAC for the Faculty and Staff Retirement Plan based on their suitability for use in a diversified retirement savings portfolio and their competitive expense level. These funds are benchmarked annually to ensure that their performance and cost remain competitive. Funds in Tier 1 and 2 are monitored regularly by the IAC. Tier 3 offers a self-directed brokerage account for investors who wish to use funds that are outside of the monitored options. Investments you select through the Tier 3 brokerage account are not monitored by the IAC. For more information about the tiered investment lineup, please visit Tiered Investment Choices.
You contribute a specified amount or percentage of your pay, by payroll deduction, before income tax withholding is calculated. This reduces your current taxable income and lets you save money that otherwise would have gone toward income taxes.
Current taxes on contributions to your account, and on interest and earnings from the account, are deferred until withdrawal or until you begin receiving regular payments. Please Note: Investment values will fluctuate so that an investor's units, when withdrawn, may be worth more or less than the original cost.
Roth 403(b) After-tax Contributions
You contribute a specified amount or percentage of your pay, by payroll deduction, after income taxes are withheld. This reduces your take home pay because the amount contributed is includible in gross income, however eligible Roth 403(b) distributions (including earnings) are generally tax- free. Click here to learn more about Roth.
How to Enroll in Your Duke 403(b) Retirement Plan
In order to enroll in the plan, you must know how much you would like to contribute, what portion of your contribution will be pre-tax or Roth after-tax, and where you would like your contributions invested.