The New York City Employee IRA

Open a Spousal NYCE IRA today, it's free!


What is a Spousal NYCE IRA?

The Spousal NYCE IRA is a tax-favored retirement savings vehicle for spouses of eligible New York City employees. The Spousal NYCE IRA is available as both a Traditional and/or a Roth IRA with the same advantages as a NYCE IRA and can be used to make contributions and consolidate retirement assets.

Overview of Spousal NYCE IRA Benefits

  • Spousal NYCE IRA account is owned by the spouse
  • Spouse can receive a rollover directly from deceased participant's Deferred Compensation Plan account
  • Spouses can choose both primary and contingent beneficiaries 
  • There are no Required Minimum Distributions (RMD) until age 72 in the Traditional NYCE IRA 
  • There are no Required Minimum Distributions (RMD) at all in the Roth NYCE IRA 
  • The $20 quarterly administrative fee is waived for a Spousal NYCE IRA


Opening a Spousal NYCE IRA during your lifetime is a step that is strongly encouraged as it alone preserves all rights and benefits of the program for your spouse.  Please note: The Spousal NYCE IRA does not need to be funded, only established.


If you are eligible to establish a NYCE IRA (because you are a current or former NYC employee with a termination date of 1985 or after) and you are married and file a joint tax return, your spouse is eligible to have a Spousal NYCE IRA. The Spousal NYCE IRA must be established using your spouse's own name and Social Security number.  Joint accounts are not allowed.

The spouse will receive his or her own Personal Identification Number (PIN)*, which is used to access the account online or through the telephone voice response system.

In order to verify eligibility to establish a Spousal NYCE IRA, the employee too must establish his or her own NYCE IRA account.  Again, the employee does not have to contribute to or consolidate assets in his or her NYCE IRA.  He or she must simply establish a NYCE IRA account.



How is a Spousal NYCE IRA Funded?

A Spousal NYCE IRA can be funded through contributions or rollovers.

Contributions - Both the employee and the spouse can contribute to the Spousal NYCE IRA as long as the couple files a joint return and has enough "taxable compensation" to cover the contribution. (See section entitled: Funding your NYCE IRA.); and


Rollovers - A spouse can roll over assets into his or her Traditional Spousal NYCE IRA from previous employers' retirement plans such as 401(k), 403(b) or 457 plans or IRAs. The Roth Spousal NYCE IRA will accept rollovers from Roth 401(k) plans or Roth IRAs. Assets can also be converted from a traditional IRA to the Roth Spousal NYCE IRA. Only retirement plans or IRAs in the spouse's own name are eligible for rolling over into the Spousal NYCE IRA. (See section entitled: Funding your NYCE IRA: Rollovers.)

Funding your NYCE IRA 

Download the NYCE IRA Brochure which includes the NYCE IRA Application