I have a 401(a) and contribute to a 403(b)(aka in private sector as 401k) at max rate. I read at educational tax site that one can contribute to both 403(b) and Traditional IRA as the contribution limits are separate.

My question is given that employer provides 401(a) and I contribute to 403(b) at the max permissible rate, am I allowed to also make additional contribution to Traditional IRA at maximum limit of $5,500?

Combined household income of 110k

  • Please indicate your household income.
    – Pete B.
    Commented Oct 30, 2018 at 16:02

1 Answer 1


Having a retirement plan at work does not prevent you from contributing from a Traditional IRA. Instead, it limits your ability to take a tax deduction for the contribution. Here is a table detailing deduction eligibility for 2018. Depending on the rest of your financial situation, you may want to research using a Roth conversion after making a non-deductible (or partially deductible) contribution to a traditional IRA.

  • 1
    If I know my income may decrease next year, or exemptions increase (say new child ), it would be best to hold off Roth conversion until then?
    – paulj
    Commented Oct 30, 2018 at 18:35
  • @paulj, I cannot answer for sure without knowing your whole circumstances. For example, let's say you did not have any other IRA accounts and you made a non-deductible contribution. Immediately after the contribution, the IRA basis would be equal to the value of the account. In this case, the conversion is more attractive than if you already have IRA accounts that are more valuable than their basis. Commented Oct 30, 2018 at 22:36

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