What is a Profit Sharing Plan and How Does it Work?

Shawn Plummer

CEO, The Annuity Expert

What is a Profit Sharing Plan?

A profit sharing plan is a retirement plan that companies use to help employees save for retirement. Companies contribute a portion of their pre-tax profits to the plan. These contributions are then allocated to individual employee accounts within the plan.

What Is A Profit-Sharing Plan

How Does a Profit-Sharing Plan Work?

  1. Company Profits: The plan begins with the company determining its profits.
  2. Decision to Share Profits: The company decides how much of its profit to share.
  3. Allocation Formula: A formula is used to allocate the profit among employees. This can be based on salary, tenure, or a combination of factors.
  4. Employee Accounts: The allocated funds are placed into individual accounts for each employee in the plan.
  5. Vesting Schedule: Employees might have to meet certain criteria or work a number of years before they fully own the contributions.
  6. Tax Benefits: Contributions are often tax-deferred, meaning employees only pay taxes upon withdrawal, typically after retirement.

Profit-sharing withdrawal calculator

Key Features of Profit-Sharing Plans

Contribution FlexibilityCompanies are not required to contribute every year.
Allocation MethodsContributions can be allocated based on salary or other criteria.
Vesting SchedulesCompanies can set up different schedules for when employees own the contributions.
Tax AdvantagesContributions are tax-deferred for employees.
Withdrawal RulesWithdrawals can be made after retirement, often with tax implications.


Profit-sharing plans are a flexible retirement saving option for employees, allowing them to benefit directly from a company’s success. They offer tax benefits and are customizable in terms of contributions and allocation methods. Understanding how these plans work can significantly impact an employee’s retirement planning. Contact us today for a free quote.

Request A Quote

Get help or a quote from a licensed financial professional. This service is free of charge.

Contact Us

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a profit-sharing plan?

A profit-sharing plan is an employee benefit plan that provides financial rewards based on the company’s profits. This can take the form of bonuses, stock options, or other forms of compensation.

How does a profit-sharing plan work?

A profit-sharing plan works by regularly distributing a portion of the company’s profits to employees, such as annually or quarterly. The specific details of the plan, including the size of the rewards and who is eligible, will vary depending on the company.

Who is eligible for a profit-sharing plan?

Eligibility for a profit-sharing plan will vary depending on the company. It may include criteria such as length of service, job title, or performance.

What are the critical components of a profit-sharing plan?

The critical components of a profit-sharing plan include eligibility criteria, contribution amount, investment options, and distributions.

Shawn Plummer

CEO, The Annuity Expert

Shawn Plummer is a licensed financial professional, insurance agent, and annuity broker with over 14 years of first-hand experience with annuities and insurance. Since beginning his journey in 2009, he has been pivotal in selling and educating about annuities and insurance products. Still, he has also played an instrumental role in training financial advisors for a prestigious Fortune Global 500 insurance company, Allianz. His insights and expertise have made him a sought-after voice in the industry, leading to features in renowned publications such as Time Magazine, Bloomberg, Entrepreneur, Yahoo! Finance, MSN, SmartAsset, The Simple Dollar, U.S. News and World Report, Women’s Health Magazine, and many more. Shawn’s driving ambition? To simplify retirement planning, he ensures his clients understand their choices and secure the best insurance coverage at unbeatable rates.

The Annuity Expert is an independent online insurance agency servicing consumers across the United States. The goal is to help you take the guesswork out of retirement planning and find the best insurance coverage at the cheapest rates

Scroll to Top