The other day I received a message from a reader with a great question that I figured others could benefit from. They asked:
“I am currently enrolled in a 401k plan through my employer and I can’t remember if I had enrolled in this plan with my previous employers. How do I find out if I have any funds available to rollover to my current 401k plan?”
There are three easy ways to find out if you enrolled in your previous companies 401k plan.
Check your old pay-stubs. If you have your pay stubs from your previous employer you can see if there are any lines noting your deductions. This will at least let you know you were contributing.
Another way you would know is if you have ever or are still receiving a quarterly statement from your 401k plan. This statement would give you detailed information on how your 401k is performing and how much you have in your account. If you have never received one of these statements chances are you never enrolled, however you can never be too careful and so it may be best to move on to my third option.
Call your previous employer and ask them if they have that information on hand. Depending on the size of the employer they may have a specific person or department that handles this type of inquiry. Find out who you would need to contact, get their information and give them a call. They would be able to let you know if you ever enrolled and will be able to help with the rollover process if you have funds available.
If your previous employers 401k plan is producing well for you, you may be better off leaving it where it is. Find out if they are charging you any maintenance fee’s and also compare the investments of your previous employer to your current employer to find out where your money will work best for you!