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<<I am looking for a comparison between 403b and 401k plans.>>

You are right that the two types of retirement plans are very similar. Since you're probably already familiar with the similarities, I guess I'll dive right into the differences:

403b plans were established with non-profit organizations in mind, as an answer to the 401a plans that were already available to for-profit organizations. The main difference between the two types of plans is the maximum IRS allowances for pretax contributions into them.

In some cases, 403b's are a bit more restrictive on how much you can contribute than 401a's; in other cases, you may be able to contribute as much as $13,000 in pretax contributions to a 403b in a given year. This depends on many different factors, though, and you should always consult a tax advisor before jumping to any conclusions on how much you can contribute.

A couple other differences exist in the fact that 403b's offer some grandfathering provisions, allowing a break on Minimun Required Distributions for account balances held prior to 1987, and additional hardship distribution allowances for account balances held prior to 1989.

Hope this helped you out a bit.

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