401(k) Tips

Kroger 401(k)

Find out how the Kroger 401(k) plan works, including eligibility requirements, contributions, withdrawals, and how to contact the plan provider.

4 min read

Kroger is one of the largest grocery retail stores in the United States, and it operates as a supermarket and department store. It was established by Bernard Kroger in 1883 in Ohio, and it has grown to over 2,719 grocery retail stores across 35 states and the District of Columbia. As of 2022, Kroger employs over 465,000 employees, who get access to various types of benefits, including 401(k).  

You become eligible to participate in Kroger's 401(k) plan if you are at least age 21 or older, and you have completed at least 90 days of service. You can start contributing a portion of your salary starting from the first day of the month when you become eligible to participate in the 401(k). You will also receive a 100% match for the first 3% of pay you contribute to the plan and an additional 50% match for the next 2% of pay you contribute to the plan.

Kroger 401k provider

Kroger's 401(k) plan is with Merrill Lynch, one of the largest investment firms in the United States with over $2.9 trillion in assets under management. Merrill was acquired by Bank of America in 2009, and it operates as a wealth management division of the bank.

Merrill holds all 401(k) retirement assets on behalf of Kroger, and it performs various roles including recordkeeping and managing benefits payments. If you need help with your 401(k) plan, you can contact Merrill Lynch’s customer care via phone at 866-820-1492.

Kroger 401k login

You can access your Kroger 401(k) plan online via the Merrill Lynch website. You will be required to enter your username and password to access your account. If you forgot your password, use the forgot login feature to reset your username or password. If you are a new user, you can register a new account on the Merrill Lynch website.

If you are a former Kroger employee, you can use Beagle’s 401(k) finder tool to find your lost 401(k) plan.

Kroger 401k match

Kroger matches contributions for each pay period you are eligible to participate and contribute to the plan. Kroger offers a 100% match for the first 3% of pay you contribute to the plan, plus a 50% match for the next 2% of pay you contribute to the plan.

Kroger 401k customer service

If you need help with your 401(k) plan, you can contact Merrill Lynch customer service at 1-866-820-1492 between Monday to Friday 9.00 a.m. to 9.00 p.m. EST. If you have questions about your Kroger’s 401(k) benefits, you can contact Kroger’s 401(k) plan administrator at 877-373-3397. 

Kroger 401k loan

Kroger allows 401(k) participants to take a 401(k) loan against their retirement savings. If you participate in the Kroger 401(k) plan, you can borrow up to $50,000 or half of your vested 401(k) balance. Generally, the 401(k) loan has a repayment period of up to five years, or longer if you are using the loan to purchase your principal residence. You can apply for a 401(k) loan by logging into your Merrill Lynch account.

Kroger 401k after termination

If you have a Kroger 401(k) account and you have been terminated, you may have several options with the money. You can decide to leave the 401(k) behind, roll it over to your new employer, roll it over to an IRA, or cash out the 401(k). Be aware that cashing out the 401(k) will incur income taxes and an additional penalty tax if you are below age 59 ½. 

Kroger 401k withdrawal

If you have a Roth 401(k) with Kroger, you will be allowed to make tax-free qualified withdrawals for any purpose. However, if you have a pre-tax 401(k) and you are still working, you won’t be allowed to make withdrawals until you attain age 59 ½, become incapable, or experience a hardship.

Once you have attained age 59 ½, you can start taking penalty-free withdrawals from 401(k), but you will still owe income taxes on the withdrawal. Also, once you reach age 72 (73 if you reach 72 after December 31, 2022), you must start taking the required minimum distributions (RMDs) from your 401(k) account.

Kroger 401k early withdrawal

If you are below age 59 ½, you will only be allowed to make an early 401(k) withdrawal if you are facing a hardship. Hardship withdrawals are only allowed if you have an urgent and substantial financial need. Some eligible hardships include paying funeral or burial expenses, medical expenses, certain education expenses, or costs required to prevent eviction and foreclosures. Once you make a hardship withdrawal, you will be suspended from making contributions for at least six months after the withdrawal.

Kroger 401k rollover form

If you want to rollover your Kroger 401(k) to another retirement plan such as 401(k) or IRA, you should obtain the rollover form from the Merrill Lynch website. Log in to your Merrill Lynch account, and search the rollover form. You must fill out the form online, detailing how much you want to roll over, the retirement plan you want to roll over into, the new plan custodian wire transfer information, etc. You can request a direct rollover so that the rollover amount is transferred directly from Kroger to your new retirement plan.

Kroger 401k account number

You can find your Kroger 401(k) account number by logging into your Merrill Lynch account. Your 401(k) account number will be indicated under your profile. You can also check your 401(k) statements and plan notifications for your 401(k) account number.

Kroger 401k phone number

Whether you want to make a withdrawal, apply for a 401(k) loan, request a statement, or make general inquiries regarding your 401(k) account, you can contact Merrill Lynch customer service at 866-820-1492. If you have questions about your 401(k) benefits such as contributions and employer match, you can contact Kroger’s 401(k) plan administrator at 513-762-4131.

Kroger 401k administrator

Kroger’s 401(k) plan administrator is Theresa Monti. The plan administrator is responsible for overseeing the day-to-day operations of the company’s 401(k) plan. You can contact the plan administrator via phone at 513-762-4131. You can also mail the plan administrator via the following address: 1014 Vine St, Cincinnati, OH, 45202-1141.

Kroger 401k eligibility

Kroger employees can participate in the company’s 401(k) plan if they are not eligible to participate in other qualified retirement plans sponsored by the company. You must be at least age 21 and completed at least 90 days of service to participate in the plan. New employees can only start making contributions beginning the first day of the month after meeting the eligibility requirements.

Kroger 401k vesting

Your salary deferral contribution, company matching contributions, and rollovers are immediately 100% vested. However, the company's automatic contributions do not become vested immediately, but over a three-year vesting period.

If you leave the company, you will keep 20% of the company's automatic contributions if you have at least one year of vesting service, 40% if you have at least two years of vesting service, and 100% if you have at least three years of vesting service. However, once you attain age 65, die, or become disabled, you will be 100% vested in your company's automatic contributions, even if you have not completed the required years of vesting service.

Kroger 401k app

You can securely manage your Kroger 401(k) plan via the MyMerrill app from Merrill Lynch. MyMerrill app is available for iOS and Android devices. You can download the MyMerrill app from the Apple Store or Google Play Store.

Kroger 401k summary plan description

You can request a copy of Kroger’s 401(k) plan description by calling Merrill Lynch at 866-820-1492 or by visiting Merrill Lynch's website.