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2020 Benefit Plan Limits and Thresholds Chart

401(k) Plan Limits

Defined Contribution Plans20202019Change

Maximum employee elective deferral




Employee catch-up contribution (if age 50 or older by year-end) 1




Maximum employee elective deferral plus catch-up contribution (if age 50 or older by year end)




Defined contribution maximum limit, all sources (employee + employer) 2




Defined contribution maximum limit (if age 50 or older by year end); maximum contribution all sources plus catch-up




Employee compensation limit for calculating contributions




Key employees' compensation threshold for nondiscrimination testing 3




Highly compensated employees’ threshold for nondiscrimination testing 4




1 The $6,500 catch-up contribution limit for participants age 50 or older applies from the start of the year for those turning 50 at any time during the year.

2 Total contributions from all sources may not exceed 100% of a participant's compensation.

3 Includes officers of the company sponsoring the plan.

4 For the 2020 plan year, an employee who earns more than $125,000 in 2019 is an HCE. For the 2021 plan year, an employee who earns more than $130,000 in 2020 is an HCE.

​Source: IRS Notice 2019-59.

HSA and HDHP Limits

Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) and High-Deductible Health Plans (HDHPs) 20202019Change

HSA contribution limit
(employer + employee)

Self-only: $3,550
Family: $7,100

Self-only: $3,500
Family: $7,000

Self-only: +$50
Family: +$100

HSA catch-up contributions
(age 55 or older)



No change

HDHP minimum deductibles

Self-only: $1,400
Family: $2,800

Self-only: 1,350
Family: $2,700

Self-only: +$50
Family: +$100

HDHP maximum out-of-pocket amounts (deductibles, co-payments and other amounts, but not premiums)

Self-only: $6,900
Family: $13,800

Self-only: $6,750
Family: $13,500

Self-only: +150
Family: +$300

Source: IRS Notice 2019-25.

View the SHRM Online article 2020 HSA Limits Rise Modestly, IRS Says.

Health FSA Limits

Health Care Flexible Spending Accounts (Health FSAs) and Limited-Scope (Vision/Dental) FSAs




Maximum salary deferral contribution




Source: IRS Notice 2019-44.

View the SHRM Online article 2020 FSA Contribution Cap Rises to $2,750.


Qualified Small Employer Health Reimbursement Arrangements (QSEHRAs)  2020 2019 Change

Maximum payments and reimbursements through the QSEHRA

Self-only: $5,250
Family: $10,600

Self-only: $5,150
Family: $10,450

Self-only: +$100
Family: +$150

Source: IRS Notice 2019-44.

Commuter Transit and Parking Limits

Qualified Transportation Benefit Tax Exclusion (monthly limits)




Transit passes and van pool services (employer + employee)




Qualified parking




Source: IRS Notice 2019-44.

View the SHRM Online article Commuter Benefits Are an Investment in Employees.

Earnings Subject to Social Security Payroll Tax

Social Security (FICA) Payroll Tax




Maximum earnings subject to Social Security 12.4% FICA payroll tax (6.2% paid by employer and 6.2% paid by employee)




Source: Social Security Administration.

View the SHRM Online article 2020 Payroll Taxes Will Hit Higher Incomes.


​An organization run by AI is not a futuristic concept. Such technology is already a part of many workplaces and will continue to shape the labor market and HR. Here's how employers and employees can successfully manage generative AI and other AI-powered systems.