Human Resources > Benefits > 403(b) Retirement Plan > How to Enroll & Make Changes

How to Enroll & Make Changes

​​​​​​​​​​All DePaul faculty and staff who are at least 21 years of age are eligible to defer part of their salary into the 403(b) retirement plan through pre-tax payroll deductions.

The steps to enroll in DePaul's 403(b) retirement plan are listed below. But first, please read the following important information about  auto-enrollment and automatic increase.


New hires, including rehires, will be automatically enrolled in the 403(b) retirement plan to make salary deferrals at a contribution level of 5% within 60 days following their hire date if they do not elect otherwise. If an employee is automatically enrolled in the plan and does not make a valid fund sponsor designation and investment election, the employee’s contributions will automatically be defaulted to Fidelity, and invested in the appropriate Vanguard Target Retirement Fund based on date of birth. Employees who are automatically enrolled in the plan may change their deferral elections or waive out of the plan at any time by following the Steps to Enroll listed below. If you are a new hire or rehire and do not want to be automatically enrolled, please follow the Steps to Enroll and opt out of the plan within 60 days of hire.

Automatic Increase Program

The DePaul University 403(b) Retirement Plan has implemented an Automatic Increase Program (or auto-escalation), designed to promote a higher savings rate among our participants, and in line with best practices in the retirement plan industry. This program affects any employees currently enrolled in the 403(b) Plan at a savings rate under 10%, and notices were issued directly by Fidelity, our Master Plan Administrator, regardless if you have your current 403(b) account balance with TIAA or Fidelity. Any employees not currently contributing to the plan, or those who are already enrolled in an automatic rate increase, will not be impacted.

The program will automatically increase your savings rate in increments of 1% each January, until you reach the target savings rate of 10%. You may opt out at any time, change the timing of this automatic increase, or change your savings rate, by logging into or calling Fidelity at 1-800-343-0860. You do not have to take any action if you wish to have your savings rate increased in January. ​​Employees have the option to automatically increase their contribution amount election each year by 1%, 2%, or 3%. It does not restrict you from making other changes to your 403(b) throughout the year. The regular annual contribution limits.

To enroll in auto-escalation, log into your Fidelity account and click on Quick Links > Contribution Amount > Annual Increase Program. You can then choose how much to increase your contribution percentage and select the specific date you want the increase to take place each year. After submitting the request, you should receive an email confirmation within 48 hours.

Click here for FAQs about the Automatic Increase Program

Steps to Enroll

Step 1: Read about the plan features and see the Summary Plan De​scr​iption for full details about the plan.

Step 2: Decide how much you can contribute. You may contribute up to the following limits, but keep in mind that any contributions made at a prior employer in the same calendar year count towards these limits.

Annual Contribution Limits for 2022:

  • General Employee Contribution: $20,500
  • Age 50 Catch-up Contribution: $6,500

To review or change your elections, please log in to NetBenefits and follow these instructions:

  1. Select the drop-down ‘Quick Links’ from the homepage and select ‘Contribution Amount’
  2. This should prompt you to the Contribution Amount page. Select the first option ‘Contribution Amount and Catch-up Contributions’
  3. Be sure to click ‘update and submit’. You should receive an email confirmation within 24-48 hours.

Step 3: Review the Enrollment Guide for details on enrolling or making election changes to your 403(b) account. Visit Fidelity NetBenefits to log into your account and view details about the plan.

Step 4: Evaluate and select your investment funds. Details about the funds available in the plan, fees and performance/returns are available in the Fund Disclosures found below. Investment elections are made directly through Fidelity.

Please note, effective October 1, 2017, any new hires or participants without a current TIAA account in the 403(b) Plan, will be able to select investments on the Fidelity platform only. See the notice about plan changes.

Step 5: Make an appointment with a financial counselor. Representatives from Fidelity and TIAA are available to meet with you on an individual, confidential basis to review your plan options and retirement goals.

Step 6: Designate your beneficiaries by contacting Fidelity and TIAA directly. Beneficiaries must be updated separately with each applicable vendor.

Manage your Retirement Account Beneficiaries

Your beneficiary will inherit your 403(b) retirement plan accumulations in the event of your death. You should designate a beneficiary when you enroll in the plan, and update it if you experience a life-changing event such as a marriage, divorce, birth of a child, death in the family.

Please review your beneficiary designation periodically to make sure the person(s) you want to receive your benefits are properly designated. If you die without having named a beneficiary and are married at the time of death, your spouse will automatically serve as the beneficiary. If you are not married, your estate receives the entire accumulation.

Note, there are separate designations for Fidelity balances and TIAA balances. So if you have 403(b) account balances at both fund sponsors, you will need to designate your beneficiaries by contacting each separately:

  • Fidelity’s Online Beneficiaries Service is available through NetBenefits. Simply log into your account at, click Profile, then Beneficiaries. Or you may call Fidelity at 800-343-0860 and speak to a representative, Monday through Friday, from 7am-11pm CT.

  • TIAA’s Online Beneficiaries Service is available by logging into your account at Click Actions, then Beneficiaries. Or you may call TIAA at 800-842-2252 Monday through Friday, from 7am-9pm CT, or Saturday from 8am-5pm.

Prior Service Credit

If you were employed full-time at another post-secondary educational institution within 120 days of hiring with DePaul, your prior continuous service may be credited towards the one-year service requirement for the University matching contribution. Prior service will be applied starting the first of the month after receipt of your prior employment verification.
To obtain your prior service credit, you will need to submit the following documentation within 90 days of hiring with DePaul:
  • On letterhead, from the prior institution
  • Include employee name and dates of service (start and end dates)
  • Confirm full-time status

Documentation should be mailed or emailed to:
      DePaul University

      Attn: Benefits Department
      Office of Human Resources
      1 East Jackson Boulevard
      Chicago, Illinois 60604