Retirement Annuity

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Retirement Annuity

An annuity one purchases to provide for oneself in retirement. In general, one purchases a retirement annuity well before retirement and makes contributions to it throughout one's working life. The contributions are invested on behalf of the annuitant, who begins to receive payments from the annuity after retirement. Many retirement annuities (especially those sponsored by an employer) are tax-deferred, meaning that the annuitant does not pay taxes on the funds in the pension until he/she begins making withdrawals. Annuities may have defined contributions, defined benefits, or both. See also: 401(k), IRA.