Collins’ bipartisan bill incentivizes small employers to offer retirement to military spouses

Access to employer-sponsored retirement plans would be expanded for the spouses of active duty United States service members under a bipartisan bill sponsored by U.S. Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME).

The Military Spouses Retirement Security Act, S. 1273, which Sen. Collins introduced on April 21 with original cosponsor U.S. Sen. Maggie Hassan (D-NH), would provide a credit to small employers for covering military spouses under retirement plans, according to the text of the bill.

“By encouraging small employers to provide military spouses with accelerated access to retirement plans, employer contributions, and vesting, our bipartisan bill would help to strengthen the financial security of these unsung heroes of our country’s national defense,” Sen. Collins said. 

If enacted, S. 1273 would make small employers having 100 or fewer employees eligible for a tax credit of up to $500 per year per military spouse. The credit would be available for three years per military spouse and the amount of the credit would be equal to $200 per military spouse plus 100 percent of all employer contributions for that spouse, up to $300, according to a bill summary provided by Sen. Collins’ office.

To receive the credit, small employers would be required to meet certain criteria under the bill, such as making a military spouse immediately eligible for retirement plan participation within two months of hire, the summary says.

“Our bipartisan legislation takes important steps to help military spouses save for a comfortable retirement, and I look forward to working across the aisle to move this commonsense bill forward,” Sen. Hassan said.  

The legislation has been referred for consideration to the U.S. Senate Finance Committee.