401(k) conversion plans

A better way to 401(k)

With Guideline, you can switch 401(k) plans with ease—get started with no employer fees for 6 months to help offset termination fees.

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Guideline 401(k) transfer
We’ll streamline your plan transfer

A 401(k) plan you’ll love

  • Easy setup and management

    We take care of nearly everything—recordkeeping, employee onboarding, investment management, government filings, and more. So you can offer a work benefit without all the added paperwork.

  • Seamless payroll integration

    Payroll integration makes 401(k) plan administration seamless and secure. We integrate with 15+ different payroll providers to provide flexibility should your payroll needs change down the road. Learn more

  • No transaction fees

    No transaction fees

    We don’t charge fees for one-off transactions like plan transfers, rollovers, loans, distributions or plan wind-downs. See our Form ADV 2A Brochure for more information on our fees.

We’ll streamline your plan transfer

Transferring a 401(k) plan from one provider to another can be a complex process. With a Guideline Max plan, you get a single point of contact that will guide you through each step.

  • Dedicated client relationship manager

    Dedicated onboarding specialist

    Your dedicated onboarding specialist will help you complete any outstanding tasks, answer any questions and keep your plan on track for your start date.

  • Dedicated client relationship manager

    Dedicated client relationship manager

    Once your first contributions have successfully been made to your Guideline 401(k), your dedicated relationship manager will take over, assisting with any 401(k) related questions.

Sample timeline

See a more detailed sample plan conversion timeline

Timeline for transferring a 401(k) plan to Guideline
  • Day 1

    Set up your Guideline plan

  • Day 2

    Initiate transfer with previous provider

  • Day 15

    Employees invited to participate

  • Day 44

    Final contributions from previous provider

  • Day 45

    Guideline 401(k) plan begins

  • Day 75

    Assets transferred from previous provider

The timeline is provided for illustrative purposes only. Your finalized timeline will be provided to you once you’ve completed Guideline plan set-up.

Pricing

Affordable for employers and employees alike

Cost for employers

$129 /month
+
$8 /month per active participant

After transferring a 401(k) to Guideline, Plan Sponsors must maintain a Max plan for at least one year before becoming eligible to switch to a different pricing plan.

Cost for participants

0.08% / year

That’s about 67¢ a month for every $10,000 saved.

Have 50 or more employees?

Alternative pricing is available. To learn more, contact Sales at hello@guideline.com.

Give your employees more

Our easy to use dashboard gives your employees more control, more access and more support. They can set up their account in less than 10 minutes, plus make updates, track their progress and access resources at any time.

  • Educational investing webinars

  • Investment portfolio recommendations

  • Live support via phone or email

Guideline dashboard for a 401(k) participant
Guideline dashboard for a 401(k) participant

Customize your new plan

Choose from a variety of features to match your previous plan design or add a few bells and whistles.

Compare pricing plans
  • Safe harbor and Roth 401(k) plans
  • Vesting schedules
  • Eligibility requirements
  • Dedicated support
  • Profit sharing options
  • Matching options

What is auto enrollment?

Auto enrollment is a required feature for all Guideline 401(k) plans. Auto enrollment can help improve IRS nondiscrimination testing results, increase employees’ retirement readiness, and much more. Learn more about auto enrollment

Your plan is in good hands

For eligible plans, we serve as the ERISA 3(16) and 3(38) plan fiduciaries—which cover plan administration and investment management. This means we are legally (and morally) obligated to work in participants’ best interest. Learn more

Reinvest in your team and business.
Transfer your 401(k) today.

Let’s get started

Frequently asked questions

How long will it take to transfer my retirement plan to Guideline?

Transferring a 401(k) plan can take approximately 75 to 90 days. You will get a finalized conversion timeline once you’ve completed Guideline plan setup. See a sample plan conversion timeline.

What is the blackout period?

A blackout period is a duration of time when participants cannot access their 401(k) accounts; this is typically during a time when 401(k) plan assets and records are being moved from one retirement benefit provider to another. During this time, participants will be unable to select new investments, take a loan, or make withdrawals from the 401(k) funds being transferred from the previous plan provider. A blackout period usually lasts about 10 business days.

Will Guideline let employees know about the blackout period?

Yes, we’ll send a blackout notice 30-60 days before the blackout period begins to all participants of the previous plan—to both current and former employees. The notice will state the reason for the blackout, its beginning and end date, and what account options will be restricted during the time period.

When do I contact my existing 401(k) provider?

Once the Guideline 401(k) plan setup is complete, a transfer task will automatically populate on your admin dashboard to move forward with the transfer. The transfer task will provide you with brief instructions regarding next steps. Ensure to mark the transfer task complete, this will let your Onboarding Specialist know you initiated the transfer.

Will employees have to initiate an inbound rollover to Guideline?

No, the plan will transfer to Guideline at the plan level. Employees will not need to request an individual rollover from the existing 401(k) provider.

Should employees stop making contributions to our previous plan?

Continuing to make contributions to the previous plan until their Guideline plan begins can help avoid missed contributions and taxes or penalties.

Are there any additional fees to switch the plan?

Guideline does not charge transaction fees, including for 401(k) plan transfers or terminations. You should check with your previous provider for any transfer fees they charge, if any.

Does Guideline maintain an ERISA bond?

As a plan fiduciary, Guideline maintains an ERISA bond covering your plan, which provides protection in the event of a claim of lost plan assets due to fraudulent or dishonest acts by Guideline. Since ERISA generally requires that every fiduciary of an employee benefit plan and every person who handles funds or other property of such a plan shall be bonded, you may want to consult your legal counsel to determine whether other individuals, such as your trustee, who may be managing your plan funds will need additional bonding for your company.

Is auto enrollment required?

Auto enrollment is a required feature for all Guideline 401(k) plans. With auto enrollment, all eligible employees can choose to opt in or opt out of the plan. If an eligible employee takes no action before the stated deadline, they will be automatically enrolled at a predetermined contribution rate. Auto enrollment can help improve IRS nondiscrimination testing results, increase employees’ retirement readiness, and much more. Learn more about auto enrollment

Which employees are eligible to participate in the plan?

With Guideline, you can determine your plan eligibility based on your employees’ age and length of service with your company:
Age: 18, 19, 20, or 21 years
Length of service: 0, 3, 6, 12 months
We do not distinguish between part time and full time employees.