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Ask Dave

That's a lot!

Kristi's employer takes a mandatory 20 percent out of her paychecks for retirement. What does Dave think of this practice?

QUESTION: Kristi works for a community college where a mandatory 20 percent is taken out of her paychecks for retirement. She asks Dave’s thoughts on this practice.

ANSWER: That is a lot to take out. I’ve heard of a few places that have a mandatory 12 percent contribution, but 20 percent is very unusual—and it’s unusually high.

I’m not sure what to tell you. I mean, you took the job. It’s what you signed up for. You may have to decide at some point if you’re still willing to work there under those circumstances. But at least you’re not losing the money, so it’s not the end of the world. It’s your money that’s going in there for your use some day.