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Receive tax breaks that add up

Employer contributions and plan expenses are generally tax deductible by your business. If this is your first 401(k) plan and you have 100 or fewer employees, you may also benefit from a tax credit of up to $5,000 for 3 years.Footnote 2 For more information, read the tax benefits fact sheet (PDF).

Get advice and guidance

Funds and model portfolios — selected and managed by Morningstar Investment Management LLC — help take the guesswork out of investing for you and your employees. Plan participants also have access to educational call-center support from Plan Administrators, Inc. (PAi) and a suite of online investor-education resources.Footnote 1,Footnote 3

Focus on your business, not your retirement plan

Stay focused on running your business with plan administration and recordkeeping support from Plan Administrators, Inc. (PAi).Footnote 1 Online access to your plan is also available 24/7.

Understand your retirement journey

PAi's CoPilot includes Years of Retirement that helps you and your employees understand how many years they can afford to be retired.

Attract and retain talented employees

88% of workers surveyed view a 401(k) or similar plan as an important benefit.Footnote 3 With a Merrill Small Business 401(k), they can contribute more than 3 times the limit of a Traditional IRA.

Stay updated with Alerts

PAi's CoPilot offers proactive, relevant messaging that encourages you and your employees to participate in the retirement experience.

88% of workers surveyed view a 401(k) or similar plan as an important benefit.Footnote 3

of workers surveyed
view a 401(k)
or similar plan as an important benefit.Footnote 3
or similar plan important.Footnote 3

Pricing and fees

Pricing and fees

Straightforward, low-cost pricing for your businessFootnote 4

One-time setup feeFootnote *:
Monthly administration:
Footnote * Setup fee is non-refundable
You may save money converting your current 401(k) plan to a Merrill Small Business 401(k).
Compare your current plan's pricing (PDF)

Fees paid by each individual participating in the planFootnote 5

Monthly recordkeeping fees:
Annual asset-based costs:
For investment fiduciary services (0.07%), participant servicing through the call center (0.20%) and account services for the ongoing product management, vendor oversight, trading and custodial services (0.25%).Footnotes 1, 6
Fees example: Sue has $10,000 in her account. This year, she will have approximately $52 withheld to cover the asset-based fee and $48 ($4 x 12 months) for recordkeeping fees.

How to open a 401(k)

How to open a 401(k)

Answer a few questions
Tell us about yourself and your business, and we'll customize a plan to fit your needs.
Review your proposal
You can modify the features, if you wish, before purchasing.
Purchase your plan
After reviewing your proposal, you can purchase your plan online in just a few minutes.
Receive a custom proposal online in as little as 5 minutes. Need help? Step-by-step guidance is available by phone from a PAiFootnote 1 401(k) Consultant.



Corporations, partnerships and nonprofit organizations can establish Merrill Small Business 401(k) plans. If you're self employed or a sole proprietorship, you may want to consider an Individual 401(k).
Employer contributions are deductible by the business. Participant pre-tax contributions and earnings aren't taxed until they're withdrawn. For more information, read the guide to tax benefits (PDF).
  • Employers may match employee salary deferrals
  • Employers may make a profit sharing contribution for each eligible employee of up to the lesser of 25% of compensation or $61,000 for 2022
  • The maximum compensation on which contributions can be based is $305,000 for 2022
  • Employees may contribute up to $20,500, or $27,000 if you're age 50 and older
  • The maximum combined employer and employee contribution is the lesser of 100% of compensation or $61,000 for 2022 (if you're 50 and older, $67,500) per participating employee

More about small business retirement plans


Self employed

More about small business retirement plans


Self employed

Need help setting up your plan?

Call 866.890.4177866.890.4177
Mon-Fri 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. CT to speak with a PAiFootnote 1 401(k) Consultant

Important disclosures

Footnote 1 Plan- and participant-level administrative and recordkeeping services for Merrill Small Business 401(k) plans are provided by Plan Administrators, Inc. (PAi). Investment advisory and fiduciary services are provided by Morningstar Investment Management LLC, a registered investment advisor and wholly owned subsidiary of Morningstar, Inc. Morningstar Investment Management LLC is a provider of investment management solutions, including investment advisory and retirement plan services. Educational call center support will be provided by PAi. Bank of America Corporation, PAi and Morningstar Investment Management LLC are not affiliated.
Footnote 2 For more information, visit the IRS websitethe IRS website.
Footnote 3 18th Annual Transamerica Retirement Survey, Aug 2018.
Footnote 4 Fees will be deducted from the business account.
Footnote 5 Fees will be deducted from each participant's account.
Footnote 6 Morningstar Investment Management LLC selects the investments and is responsible for the ongoing monitoring and maintenance of the investments and model portfolios. Merrill is responsible for ongoing product management and vendor oversight, as well as trading and custodial services of plan assets and monthly transaction statements.
Contribution and compensation limits are subject to a cost-of-living adjustment annually pursuant to the Internal Revenue Code. Contribution and compensation limits for subsequent years may vary.
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Asset allocation, diversification, and rebalancing do not ensure a profit or protect against loss in declining markets.
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