401(k) Retirement Plan

Saving for the future takes focus and planning. When it comes to achieving financial security, set-it-and-forget-it is not an option. Whatever your ultimate retirement goals are—lots of travel, starting a new business, doting on your loved ones—take full advantage of your benefits to help you get there.

The latest COVID-19 401(k) information is on the COVID-19 page.

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Who is eligible and how to enroll

All U.S. employees and interns are eligible on their first day of work. Within approximately 60 days of your hire/rehire date, all employees will be automatically enrolled in Adobe's 401(k) plan with a pre-tax paycheck deferral of 6%. Your contributions will be invested in a Vanguard Target Retirement Trust based on your age (interns are not automatically enrolled but can choose to participate).

Through Vanguard's One-Step Save Program, your contribution will be automatically increased by 1% every March.

However, participation is voluntary. Visit vanguard.com to:

  • Opt out in advance of auto enrollment (or any time thereafter) if you choose:
    • not to participate, or
    • if you have already reached the annual IRS maximum contribution for the year with your prior employer
  • Change how much you contribute and your contribution type (pre-tax, Roth after-tax or traditional after-tax)
  • View and manage your account

You can also opt out, make changes, or start deferrals in advance of auto enrollment, by calling Vanguard Participant Services at 800-523-1188. Adobe’s plan number is 096204. Please note: It can take up to seven days from your hire date for your information to become available at Vanguard.

Opting out of participation

To opt out of Adobe’s 401(k) plan, including opting out of auto enrollment, follow these steps [PDF]:

  1. Visit the Vanguard 401(k) website, sign up for online access and log in.
  2. Click Change Enrollment.
  3. On the next screen, click Delete Enrollment.

Starting deferrals in advance of automatic enrollment

To begin your paycheck deferrals in advance of automatic enrollment, follow these steps [PDF]:

  1. Visit the Vanguard 401(k) website, sign up for online access and log in.
  2. Click Change Enrollment.
  3. On the next screen, click Delete Enrollment.
  4. Select Manage My Money.
  5. Select Change My Paycheck Deduction (enter your paycheck elections).

Visit Vanguard 401(k) website for additional information, resources and tools to help you make the best decisions for you and your financial future.

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What you can contribute

You can elect to defer 1% to 65% of your eligible pay. Pre-tax and/or Roth after-tax contributions are subject to a $19,500 annual IRS limit. If you are age 50 or over, you may contribute an additional $6,500 in catch-up contributions. In addition, you may elect to defer up to $29,800 in traditional after-tax contributions.

If you made contributions to a 401(k) with a previous employer this year, those contributions count toward your IRS annual limit. Monitor your total contributions to avoid over-contributing. If you believe you have exceeded the IRS limit, contact Vanguard at 800-523-1188 to process a refund.

Rollover contributions

It is important to decide what to do with the savings you have in your previous employer's 401(k). You have the option to roll over your account assets to your Adobe 401(k) plan, following these steps [PDF]. 

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Matching contributions

To help your savings go even further, Adobe matches 50% of the first 6% that you contribute as regular pre-tax and Roth 401(k) after-tax salary deferral contributions each pay period. That means that for each $1 you contribute to your 401(k), Adobe will contribute 50 cents, up to 6% of your eligible pay (the IRS-eligible annual compensation maximum is $290,000. If you contribute more than 6% of your eligible pay, Adobe matches 3% of your annual compensation.

Examples of how the company match works

If your annual compensation is $100,000 and you contribute 6% of your pay to your 401(k):

  • $100,000 annual compensation x 6% deferral x 50% Adobe match = $3,000 in matching contributions from Adobe per year

If your annual compensation is $150,000 and you contribute 10% of your pay to your 401(k):

  • $150,000 annual compensation x 3% (if you contribute more than 6%, Adobe matches 3% of your compensation) = $4,500 in matching contributions from Adobe per year

If your annual compensation is $300,000 and you contribute 6% of your pay to your 401(k):

  • $290,000 IRS annual compensation max x 6% deferral x 50% Adobe match = $8,700 in matching contributions from Adobe per year.

Adobe offers an annual year-end true-up provision to make sure you can take full advantage of the company match even if you reach the IRS contribution maximum of $19,500 before the end of the calendar year. For example, you may reach the contribution maximum if you had a bonus paid out at the start of the year, or if you contribute more in the first quarter to maximize the annual earnings in your 401(k). To be eligible for true-up funding, you must be an active employee on Dec. 31. True-up funding is deposited into eligible accounts by the last business day of February. All company contributions are completely vested.

Examples of how the true-up works

If your average deferral for the year is 6% or greater, your company match is based on 3% of your eligible compensation.

  • For example, if your compensation for the year is $150,000, you are eligible to receive $4,500 in company match ($150,000 X 3%). In this example, you receive $2,769.28 match during the plan year, and $1,730.72 as true-up match in February. 

However, if your average deferral for the year is less than 6%, your company match is based on 50% of your employee contributions.

  • For example, if your employee contributions for the year total $6,000, you are eligible to receive $3,000 in company match ($6,000 x 50%). In this example, you will receive $1,750 match during the plan year, and $1,250 as true-up match in February.

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Your investment options

You can choose a Target Retirement Trust, which chooses the level of risk in your portfolio based on an estimated retirement age of 65, or you can create your own portfolio by selecting from our lineup of core investment funds. Learn about your investment options.

Self-directed brokerage option

The Adobe 401(k) plan offers a self-directed brokerage option through TD Ameritrade, where you have access to thousands of investment choices. Keep in mind that the risks are substantially higher with any brokerage strategy and that you will be responsible for paying commissions and other costs.
To register your account:

  1. Log on to your retirement plan account at vanguard.com/retirementplans.
  2. If you have multiple accounts at Vanguard, select Employer plans.
  3. Select Manage my money
  4. Select Manage my brokerage option.

For questions about the brokerage option, please contact TD Ameritrade at 866-766-4015.

Environmental, social and governance (ESG) investing

You may be interested in incorporating environmental, social or governance (ESG) factors into your decisions for how to invest your 401(k) account. Whether to engage in ESG investing is a personal decision that you must evaluate based on your own unique circumstances. However,  you should be aware that ESG investing may involve lower returns and greater risks than traditional investing, due to the more limited universe of available stocks and the fact that financial performance is not the sole consideration of the investment managers.

You have two options for ESG investing for your 401(k) account:

  1. Vanguard FTSE Social Index Fund: Available within Adobe’s core investment menu, this fund seeks to track the performance of a benchmark index that measures the investment return of large- and mid-cap stocks. The benchmark screens companies on certain social, corporate governance and environmental criteria. View the fund overview for more information.
  2. The self-directed brokerage option: As described above, you may direct your own investments through TD Ameritrade. Once you have established a brokerage account, you can access the Mutual Fund Screener to view and select socially responsible funds based on your criteria.

In addition to the investment advice options described in the section below, these resources can help if you want to learn more about ESG investing:

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Investment advice options

Whether you just want a little guidance or prefer ongoing investment management, Vanguard offers options to find the assistance that’s right for you.

Let Vanguard do it for you

The Vanguard Managed Account Program provides ongoing professional management for your investments in the Adobe 401(k) plan. The service will select your funds, invest your money, and periodically make changes to your asset mix to suit your goals. You’ll get to preview your proposed strategy before any initial changes are made to your account, and you’ll receive a quarterly portfolio report. Program fees are based on a percentage of assets under management (excluding any loan balances), with a minimum annual fee of $60.

Get started by logging on to your account. Select the Get Advice icon in the bottom right corner, and then select the Advice tab for information on the Managed Account Program. You may also call 800-310-9228.

Let Vanguard help you

The Personal Online Advisor tool (powered by Financial Engines) can help you choose the funds that are right for you. It provides online investment advice about your personal investments and an unbiased evaluation of your chances of reaching your financial goals. There is no cost to Adobe employees for this service.

Get started by logging on to your account. Select the Get Advice icon in the bottom right corner, and then select the Advice tab for a link to the Personal Online Advisor.

Vanguard Financial Planning Services provide advice from a financial advisor in two ways:

  • Ask an Advisor, quick situational guidance from an advisor, such as discussing specific investment options or whether you’re saving enough. There is no cost to Adobe employees.
  • Vanguard Financial Plan, a free service for participants age 55 or older that includes an in-depth financial plan and consultation with a financial advisor. All your household assets (taxable, nontaxable and spousal accounts) can be included in your financial plan. You will review the recommendations over the phone with your advisor, who can answer your questions.

Consult an advisor at 800-310-8952.

Do it yourself

The Investor Questionnaire provides suggestions for an appropriate asset allocation based on your investment goals, time horizon and comfort with risk. You can use the suggested asset mix to help you build a portfolio of funds offered in the Adobe 401(k) plan.

Vanguard Target Retirement Trusts are all-in-one investment options that provide a professionally maintained, diversified mix of investments that shifts its emphasis to more conservative investments as the year of retirement nears. The year in the trust name refers to the approximate year (the target date) when you plan to retire. The trust will gradually shift its emphasis from more aggressive investments to more conservative ones based on its target date.

To choose your investments, call Vanguard at 800-523 1188, Monday–Friday 5:30 am–6 pm PT, or log on to your account.

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After-tax and Roth conversion

Traditional after-tax contributions

Traditional after-tax contributions offer an alternative to the pre-tax and Roth 401(k) after-tax contributions available in the Adobe 401(k) plan and allow you to contribute above the IRS contribution limit for pre-tax and Roth 401(k) after-tax contributions. The automatic redirect option allows you to have your 401(k) payroll deferrals automatically redirected/converted into traditional after-tax payroll deferrals once you reach the annual 401(k) pre-tax and/or Roth after-tax limit.

Note: Traditional after-tax contributions are not eligible for company matching contributions.

Like Roth contributions, traditional after-tax contributions are made with after-tax dollars. You will not owe taxes on a withdrawal of your traditional after-tax contributions. However, you will owe income taxes on the portion of the withdrawal that represents earnings on those contributions (as well as a 10% federal penalty tax if you are under age 59½).

To learn more, visit the Vanguard site. You can begin making traditional after-tax contributions at any time. To do so, log on to your account.

Roth in-plan conversions

The Roth in-plan conversion feature allows you to convert all or a portion of your pre-tax and/or traditional after-tax savings to Roth money within the 401(k) plan—you can even set up automatic conversions. You will owe ordinary income tax on the pre-tax money converted to Roth in the tax year of the conversion. If you convert after-tax money to Roth, you will owe taxes on the portion of the conversion that represents earnings for the year in which the conversion is made. Taxes must be paid from assets outside of the 401(k) plan.

Roth money, including any earnings, can be withdrawn tax-free if you are age 59½ or older and the Roth account has been established for at least five years. Tax-free withdrawals could be a significant benefit in retirement.

You will be responsible for paying any federal, state, local or foreign taxes on a distribution or withdrawal from pre-tax accounts. A distribution or withdrawal of Roth 401(k) earnings is usually also taxable unless the initial Roth contribution was made more than five years ago and you are at least age 59½. Early withdrawals may be subject to a 10% federal penalty tax. To the extent required by law, Vanguard will make the appropriate withholding for tax purposes. We recommend that you consult a tax advisor before taking any action.

To learn more, visit the Vanguard site. To elect a Roth in-plan conversion, call Vanguard Participant Services at 800-523-1188 (Monday–Friday, 5:30 am–6 pm PT).

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Your 401(k) plan if your company was acquired

If your company has been acquired by Adobe, you’ll have a period of approximately 12–24 months after the acquisition when you can access your old 401(k) account and continue to allocate investments, but you won’t be able to roll over assets or request an account distribution.

Once your account assets have been distributed from your old 401(k) plan, you can do one of the following:

  • Roll over your account assets into Adobe’s 401(k) plan at Vanguard.
  • Roll over your account assets to an individual retirement account (IRA).
  • Request an account distribution, which will be subject to taxes and early withdrawal penalties.

If your employment ends, you can immediately initiate a rollover or account distribution by contacting the plan’s provider.

Be sure to update your contact information regularly so you can receive notifications about your account assets and actions you have to take. See below for address-update directions for each plan.

Here’s the status of the 401(k) plans for recently acquired companies:

Workfront 401(k) plan

Marketo 401(k) plan

Magento 401(k) plan

Bizible 401(k) plan

TubeMogul 401(k) plan