How to bring up this issue with your boss? (firm failure to contribute employer match)

Non-investing personal finance issues including insurance, credit, real estate, taxes, employment and legal issues such as trusts and wills
Post Reply
fantasytensai
Posts: 475
Joined: Fri Sep 30, 2016 3:30 pm

How to bring up this issue with your boss? (firm failure to contribute employer match)

Post by fantasytensai » Thu Jul 12, 2018 3:17 pm

So I work for a 50-100 employee law firm (total employees, not just lawyers). The firm has a sucky, but not horrendous 401(k) match - 3% of salary, vesting 25% each year over 4 years. I have now been employed for about 15 months here.

I realize that the first 25% of the match still has not posted to my 401(k) account. I call up the 401k administrators and they tell me that it is not an issue on their end. Rather, it is my employer who still has not put in the match. I'm looking to bring this issue up with one of the principals of the firm (HR doesn't know anything). How should I approach this situation gently to make sure I get what I am owed, but also not to embarrass anyone?

User avatar
mhc
Posts: 3808
Joined: Mon Apr 04, 2011 10:18 pm
Location: NoCo

Re: How to bring up this issue with your boss? (firm failure to contribute employer match)

Post by mhc » Thu Jul 12, 2018 3:21 pm

Have you read the plan documents to make sure you understand all the rules? If not, I would do that before speaking to anyone.

soccerrules
Posts: 803
Joined: Mon Nov 14, 2016 4:01 pm

Re: How to bring up this issue with your boss? (firm failure to contribute employer match)

Post by soccerrules » Thu Jul 12, 2018 3:27 pm

yes read whatever plan information you have. The language around matching and vesting can be confusing. My company matches after 12 months and there is a vesting time frame based on years of service. Matching for me also takes place at the end of the year, not each pay period.

I would think you have someone within your company (non-principal) that handles these transactions. Assume it is the same person that processes 401k contributions. Start there.
Don't let your outflow exceed your income or your upkeep will be your downfall.

staythecourse
Posts: 6219
Joined: Mon Jan 03, 2011 9:40 am

Re: How to bring up this issue with your boss? (firm failure to contribute employer match)

Post by staythecourse » Thu Jul 12, 2018 3:37 pm

fantasytensai wrote:
Thu Jul 12, 2018 3:17 pm
So I work for a 50-100 employee law firm (total employees, not just lawyers). The firm has a sucky, but not horrendous 401(k) match - 3% of salary, vesting 25% each year over 4 years. I have now been employed for about 15 months here.

I realize that the first 25% of the match still has not posted to my 401(k) account. I call up the 401k administrators and they tell me that it is not an issue on their end. Rather, it is my employer who still has not put in the match. I'm looking to bring this issue up with one of the principals of the firm (HR doesn't know anything). How should I approach this situation gently to make sure I get what I am owed, but also not to embarrass anyone?
Why not just find out who sits on the 401k board or whatever they like to call it and drop one of them an email that you would appreciate if they could explain when you qualify for the employer match. As they look into it they will realize they made a mistake IF there is one. If there is not a mistake they will tell you WHY you have not received the match. No lose situation.

BTW, if HR does not do this WHO is responsible? They should be able to tell you that. You are NOT the first person to ever have a question about your 401k plan so who do they direct those questons to when they do occur?

Good luck.
"The stock market [fluctuation], therefore, is noise. A giant distraction from the business of investing.” | -Jack Bogle

delamer
Posts: 6424
Joined: Tue Feb 08, 2011 6:13 pm

Re: How to bring up this issue with your boss? (firm failure to contribute employer match)

Post by delamer » Thu Jul 12, 2018 3:55 pm

Ask your boss who can answer a question about the 401(k) match.

Hopefully, s/he can direct you. If not, then try your boss’s boss.

Nate79
Posts: 3735
Joined: Thu Aug 11, 2016 6:24 pm
Location: Delaware

Re: How to bring up this issue with your boss? (firm failure to contribute employer match)

Post by Nate79 » Thu Jul 12, 2018 4:04 pm

I think there should be no issue to bring this up with your boss and ask them if they understand and can explain how the company match works as you haven't received a match yet but are kind of unsure exactly how it works. I would play dumb and not confrontational and have them explain it to you.

User avatar
TNL
Posts: 357
Joined: Sat Jul 25, 2015 2:13 pm

Re: How to bring up this issue with your boss? (firm failure to contribute employer match)

Post by TNL » Thu Jul 12, 2018 7:53 pm

In a firm of that size, there should be an accounting department/payroll person. Even if your payroll is outsourced to a company like ADP, someone there has to pull the trigger. You also should have an office manager or executive director that is separate from HR. I'd ask them too.

Post Reply