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Greetings, Radishes, and welcome. You wrote:

<<We have a 403(b) plan at the juniour college where I work, but there are only a limited amount of companies (11 or 12) to choose from.

As I understand it, the 403(b)(7) section allows you to go out of the employer-offered plans and strike out on your own, even to the point of investing in individual stock if you wish. However, I'm having trouble finding ful information on doing this and I need it to convince my benefits coordinator (who hasn't heard of this optin at all) to let me do it.

Is it something I can set up between myself and a company? Where can I find more information that will convince my employer that I can do this? >>

Your basic understanding is correct, but slightly flawed. Contributions to a 403b plan may be invested in annuities and/or mutual funds only. Investments in individual stocks and bonds or the like are NOT allowed. Revenue Ruling 90-24 authorizes the direct transfer of funds from one 403b plan to another, and this includes the transfer of monies from active plan participants from the basic 403b offered by their employer to a 403b(7) account offered by a mutual fund. Both Vanguard and Fidelity offer such accounts. If you contact them, I'm sure they will send you the necessary forms.

Be aware that your employer is NOT required to redirect your normal contribution to the new 403b(7) account. Those deposits might still be required to go to your current provider. That means you would have to periodically transfer sums in the future as well.

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