Get answers to frequently asked questions

MarylandSaves is a workplace savings program created to make it easy for Maryland businesses to help their employees save. The State of Maryland wants all Maryland businesses to be able to offer retirement savings, but many do not because they don’t have the people, time, or money to buy a plan, pay the fees, and make contributions. The MarylandSaves program is designed to make it easy and free to help your employees save. 

Here are answers to many of the common things we’ve been asked. If you have questions beyond these, we’re here to help. Just drop us a line.

Are workers of only certain immigration statuses eligible for the program? What about undocumented workers?

Only workers with a verifiable Individual Tax Identification Number (ITIN) or Social Security number (SSN) can participate in the program. If a worker's information cannot be verified, the worker will not be enrolled, and an account will not be established for them.

NOTE: Information provided to MarylandSaves regarding ITINs is not shared with immigration or law enforcement agencies.

Do family members who work for my business count as employees?

Yes, they can participate if they are considered employees for tax purposes.

If a business owner or shareholder is also an employee, are they eligible to participate?

Yes, they can participate if they are considered employees for tax purposes.

Do I need to facilitate the program if I only have a few of employees?

The Maryland requirement applies to any Maryland business that has even one W-2 employee IF they use an automated payroll system and have been in operation for at least two years. You can satisfy this requirement by using MarylandSaves or any other form of qualified retirement plan. 

Qualified plans include a plan qualified under Internal Revenue Code sections 401(a) (including a 401(k) plan), qualified annuity plan under section 403(a), tax-sheltered annuity plan under section 403(b), Simplified Employee Pension plan under section 408(k), a SIMPLE IRA plan under section 408(p), or governmental deferred compensation plan under section 457(b). It does not include payroll deduction IRAs.

Do I need to offer the program to work-study students?

Nope. The State’s requirement does not apply to full-time students in work-study programs.

Who is responsible for choosing the investment options for participants?

The Maryland Small Business Retirement Savings Program is responsible for making decisions about the investment options available to participants of the program. Individual savers can choose among those options. Employers aren’t responsible either for the options or for their employees’ choices.

Do I need to report contributions on my employees’ W2s?

No. The MarylandSaves program is structured as a payroll deduction IRA and not as a traditional retirement plan that needs to be reported on your employees’ W2s. The IRA trustee for the MarylandSaves program will file “Form 5498, IRA Contributions Information” with the IRS (as needed for your employees) and will send employees a copy for their records, no later than May 31 of each year.

Can the State use money from this program to pay for other programs?

No. Employees’ contributions go directly to the MarylandSaves WorkLife Accounts in their names in funds that, by law, are managed by private investment firms. The State has no involvement with these funds and there is no connection to other retirement plans offered by the State for state employees.

Is there a minimum age to be eligible to participate in MarylandSaves?

Yes, your employees must be at least 18 years of age to be enrolled in the program.