Take care of your retirement + your team

A Safe Harbor 401(k) can help boost savings and reduce administrative work. Open your plan before our August 19 deadline.

Let’s get started
Guideline 401(k)

Safe Harbor, explained

Unlike traditional 401(k) plans, Safe Harbor 401(k) plans get certain “safe harbor” protections and automatically satisfy most IRS nondiscrimination tests. In exchange, companies must contribute to their employees’ 401(k) accounts.

As of May 2022, Safe Harbor plans make up 69% of our plans. They can mean fewer headaches for small business owners and more savings for everyone.

  • Exempt from most IRS nondiscrimination testing

  • Requires a company contribution

Ace your compliance tests

Nondiscrimination testing is required by the IRS to help ensure that 401(k) plans benefit both owners and employees. But even the most well-intentioned business owner can run into trouble when sponsoring a 401(k) plan. An owner contributing too much or employees contributing too little can result in a failed test and expensive corrections.

Safe Harbor plans automatically satisfy most IRS nondiscrimination tests and help avoid the consequences of failure.

A benefit for employers and employees

  • Seamless tech integrations

    Owners can max out their personal 401(k)

    With less to worry about when it comes to nondiscrimination tests, owners and other highly compensated employees can truly max out their deferrals.

  • Custodial services

    Employees get a savings boost

    Since Safe Harbor plans require a company contribution, employees get a little extra savings.

401(k) pricing plans

Get a 401(k) that works for you and your employees

What’s included

The fundamental services needed to offer a great benefit, including:

  • Payroll integration with Gusto, QuickBooks, Square and other payroll providers.

  • Automated recordkeeping, plan admin, and employee onboarding.

  • We serve as your 3(38) and 3(16) fiduciary and handle certain IRS and DOL reporting and filings.

Employer pricing

  • Core

    $49/ month
    + $8/mo per active participant

    A seamless Safe Harbor 401(k) plan for small businesses that want to make an employer contribution.

    Core plans must be connected with our full integration payroll partners.

  • Flex

    $79/ month
    + $8/mo per active participant

    A 401(k) for businesses that want the flexibility to pick and choose features to meet their goals.

  • Max

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

    Our most customizable 401(k) for business owners who want to maximize savings and receive dedicated support.

    Max plans are required for controlled groups and 401(k) plan transfers.

Employee pricing

0.08% / year

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

Your employees will get access to educational webinars, live support and more.

See how else you can empower your employees

Have 50 or more employees?

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

We handle the regulatory stuff

See everything we provide
  • Seamless tech integrations

    Government filing

    We prepare annual reports for no extra fee, including Forms 5500 and 1099-R.

  • Custodial services

    Fiduciary services

    We serve as your 3(38) investment manager and 3(16) plan administrator.

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If you’re starting a new 401(k) plan, you may be eligible to receive up to $16,500 in tax credits over three years to offset plan administration costs.

See if you’re eligible

Does your state have a retirement plan mandate?

Many states like CA, IL and OR have retirement plan mandates in place. A Safe Harbor 401(k) can help you meet the mandate, and more.

See where your state stands

Key dates

Open a new plan by August 19 to start saving this year

  • Timeline for new 401(k) plans

    • Aug 19


      Last day to set up a Safe Harbor 401(k) plan with Guideline

    • Sep 01


      30-day notice sent to employees

    • Oct 01


      Your Safe Harbor 401(k) plan is live

  • Timeline for existing 401(k) plans

    • Nov 18


      Last day to add Safe Harbor matching provisions to your 401(k) with Guideline

    • Dec 01


      30-day notice sent to employees

    • Jan 01


      Safe Harbor matching provision takes effect for 2023

What about Safe Harbor nonelective contributions?

The deadline to add a 3% Safe Harbor nonelective provision to your 401(k) plan is Dec. 1, 2022. In order to adopt this provision, you’ll need to request an amendment by Nov. 5, 2022.

If you want to add this provision to your plan after the Dec. 1 deadline, it must be at least 4%.

  • Let’s get started

    Open a new Safe Harbor 401(k) and pay no employer fees for 1 month. Offer ends August 19, 2022.

    Get started
  • Want more details?

    Our Safe Harbor Guide covers everything from matching options to plan requirements to key deadlines.

    Read the Guide