University of Wisconsin–Madison

Tax Sheltered Annuity 403(b)

The UW Tax Sheltered Annuity 403(b) program is a supplemental retirement savings plan that allows you to invest a portion of your income for retirement either on a pre-tax or post-tax (Roth) basis or a combination of both. Participation in the UW TSA Program is voluntary with employees making the entire contribution; there is no employer match.

The UW offers TSA accounts through the following providers:


Eligible Employees

  • Employees covered by the WRS
  • LTE and Project employees
  • Rehired annuitants
  • Student hourly employees
  • Graduate Assistants
  • Short-Term Academic Staff employees

Ineligible Employees

  • Employees-in-Training
  • Fellows
  • Interns


Minimum Contributions

  • $8.00 per biweekly paycheck
  • $20.00 per monthly paycheck

2021 Maximum Contributions

  • $19,500 if under age 50
  • $26,000 if age 50 or older at any time during the year

Special 15-Year Catch-Up

If you have 15 years or more of UW service, and your average TSA contribution is less than $5,000 per year, you may be eligible to contribute an additional $3,000 per year ($15,000 maximum over 5 years). You must confirm your eligibility each year by contacting HR.


You may withdraw your contributions (take a distribution) only when you:

  • Leave employment with the UW System,
  • Reach age 59½—even if you are still working, or
  • Become disabled

Once you meet this eligibility criteria, you have three options to manage your UW TSA 403(b) program assets:

  • Leave your assets with your provider in the UW TSA Program
  • Roll over to another plan with a new employer or to an Individual Retirement Account (IRA)
  • Cash out. Get immediate access to your retirement savings, minus 20% withholding and possible early withdrawal penalties if under age 59½

To access your money, contact your TSA provider(s). Withdrawals from TIAA, Fidelity, and T. Rowe Price may be initiated over the phone; TIAA and Fidelity also provide online distribution requests. To withdraw your money from Lincoln or Ameriprise, you must use their form.

Note: a signature from the UW Plan Administrator is not required for any of the current TSA providers—just complete the form, sign it, and submit it directly to the TSA provider.

Updating Contributions

You may update your TSA contribution amount at any time by completing a Salary Reduction Agreement or by using the online self-service tool in MyUW.

Rollovers and Transfers

If you have funds in an account from a previous employer or you have funds with one of our frozen providers, you may benefit from moving that money to a current provider with the UW TSA Program. To get started, contact your former plan or employer to obtain distribution paperwork. You may also need roll-in paperwork from your current UW TSA Program provider. Contact your provider directly for this paperwork.

Address and Beneficiary Changes

You can change your address by contacting your investment company via phone or in writing. You can change your beneficiary online with Fidelity, T. Rowe Price and TIAA-CREF. With the other companies, you must submit a new beneficiary designation to change your beneficiary.

Learn more about the TSA Program

Online Education

Live Webinars

Individual Counseling Appointments

45-minute appointments are available from 9 am–4 pm. Make an appointment to discuss if you’re on track saving for retirement. Check “Today in the Union” the day of your appointment for the specific room at Union South and Memorial Union.


Schedule an appointment online or call 1-800-642-7131.

T. Rowe Price

T. Rowe Price provides individual counseling sessions over the phone. To speak to a T. Rowe Price representative, call 1-888-263-2899.


Lincoln has advisors in Madison at 406 Science Drive, Suite 310. For a Lincoln appointment, call 608-238-8388.


Ameriprise has advisors in Madison at 2601 West Beltline Hwy., Suite 104. For an Ameriprise appointment, call 608-819-0500.