How to Request a Hardship Withdrawal

If you are under age 59 and need to withdraw funds from your 403(b) (optional retirement) account due to an immediate and heavy financial need, contact TIAA.


In general, before requesting a Hardship Withdrawal, you should consult your personal tax advisor as to the tax consequences for this type of distribution.

The funds you receive will be taxable for federal and state income tax purposes in the year it is received, and can be subject to an additional 10 percent Federal income tax penalty.

At the time of the withdrawal you can choose to have TIAA withhold taxes on the withdrawal amount. At the end of the calendar year in which you took the withdrawal, you will receive a 1099R to be filed with your tax return for the year. In order to determine if the hardship is subject to the additional 10 percent penalty, you should also complete IRS Form 5329 or consult a tax advisor.


Receiving your Withdrawal
TIAA may require documentation to verify the financial need.  If they approve the request, they will provide the funds to you directly.

Items of note when requesting a hardship:

  • The amount available for a hardship is only the principal contributed to the account; accumulations are not available for hardship withdrawals. TIAA requires the submission of all the paperwork before determining your available balance.
  • The entire process can take up to 3-4 weeks to complete; this time frame should be factored in when requesting a hardship withdrawal.




Contact your campus benefits office for more information.

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