The TSP “over 50” catch-up contribution limit for 2017 is $6,000. Catch-up contributions do not count against the $18,000 elective deferral limit. To qualify to make catch-up contributions, you must: be age 50 or older, or will turn 50 in the calendar year the contribution is deducted from pay; be in a pay status; not be in a 6-month non-contributory period after taking a financial hardship withdrawal; and be making the maximum regular TSP contributions (i.e., $18,000) for the year in which you are making the catch-up contributions.

Employees wishing to make catch-up contributions in 2017 must make an election to do so even if they were in the catch-up program in 2016. To make the maximum catch-up contribution in 2017 via level bi-weekly payments, you should set your contribution at $231 per pay period effective December 11, 2016 (pay date January 5, 2017) via Employee Express. There is no restriction on accelerating the payment of catch-up contributions over a few pay periods. Anyone retiring prior to the end of the year who wants to reach the annual contribution limit will need to accelerate their contributions.