Supplemental Executive Retirement Plan - SERP

DEFINITION of 'Supplemental Executive Retirement Plan - SERP'

A non-qualified retirement plan for key company employees, such as executives, that provides benefits above and beyond those covered in other retirement plans such as IRA, 401(k) or NQDC plans. There are many different kinds of SERPs available to companies wishing to ensure their key employees are able to maintain their current standards of living in retirement.

SERPs are also known as "top hat plans".

BREAKING DOWN 'Supplemental Executive Retirement Plan - SERP'

Unlike NQDC plans, in which key employees defer compensation in order to receive it later, SERPs are entirely funded by the employer. Because of the high costs associated with funding SERPS, they are criticized by shareholder advocates and labor groups that believe some executives are overpaid for their performance.

RELATED TERMS
  1. Employee Stock Option - ESO

    A stock option granted to specified employees of a company. ESOs ...
  2. Top Hat Plan

    A form of retirement plan available only to selected company ...
  3. Employee Stock Ownership Plan - ...

    A qualified, defined contribution, employee benefit (ERISA) plan ...
  4. Golden Hello

    A signing bonus offered to a candidate from a rival company. ...
  5. Government-Sponsored Retirement ...

    A Canadian retirement plan for individuals who are not employees ...
  6. Camouflage Compensation

    Compensation that is granted to upper echelon employees, directors, ...
Related Articles
  1. Fundamental Analysis

    Financial Footnotes: Start Reading The Fine Print

    Find out what could be hidden in this often-overlooked part of the financial statements.
  2. Options & Futures

    A New Approach To Equity Compensation

    The new financial accounting standard known as FAS 123R could take a bite out of your portfolio. Find out why here.
  3. Options & Futures

    Putting Management Under The Microscope

    We tell you where to find the telltale signs of corporate misdeeds.
  4. Retirement

    How Much Should You Have In Your 401(k) To Retire?

    Determining how much money should be in your 401(k) when you retire depends on several variables, many of which are uncertain.
  5. Investing

    How To Make Sure Your Healthcare Costs Do Not Ruin Your Retirement

    The best proactive plan of action for a stable retirement is to understand medical costs, plan ahead, invest properly, and consider supplemental insurance.
  6. Investing

    3 Small Steps to Maximize Your Investing Goals

    Instead of starting the New Year with ambitious resolutions, why not taking smaller manageable steps that can have a real impact.
  7. Investing

    7 Creative Ways to Save for an Early Retirement

    Take note of these out of the box steps you can take towards securing yourself an earlier, more comfortable retirement.
  8. Your Clients

    Tips for Making Your Nest Egg Last Longer

    If you’re trying to figure out how to make your hard-earned nest egg last, there’s one piece of advice that stands above the rest.
  9. Personal Wealth & Private Banking

    What People Hate About Financial Advisors

    Advisors need to make a living too, but doing so by cutting corners at a client's expense isn't right. Here are the top complaints against advisors.
  10. Products and Investments

    SRI Funds and Your 401(k): What You Need to Know

    Socially responsible, green and impact investing options are now DoL-approved for 401(k) plans. Here's what investors should know.
RELATED FAQS
  1. Am I losing the right to collect spousal Social Security benefits before I collect ...

    The short answer is yes, if you haven't reached age 62 by December 31, 2015. The Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015 disrupted ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. Where else can I save for retirement after I max out my Roth IRA?

    With uncertainty about the sustainability of Social Security benefits for future retirees, a lot of responsibility for saving ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. Will quitting your job hurt your 401(k)?

    Quitting a job doesn't have to impact a 401(k) balance negatively. In fact, it may actually help in the long run. When leaving ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. Can a 401(k) be taken in bankruptcy?

    The two most common types of bankruptcy available to consumers are Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. Whether you file a Chapter 7 ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. When can catch-up contributions start?

    Most qualified retirement plans such as 401(k), 403(b) and SIMPLE 401(k) plans, as well as individual retirement accounts ... Read Full Answer >>
  6. Who can make catch-up contributions?

    Most common retirement plans such as 401(k) and 403(b) plans, as well as individual retirement accounts (IRAs) allow you ... Read Full Answer >>
Hot Definitions
  1. Super Bowl Indicator

    An indicator based on the belief that a Super Bowl win for a team from the old AFL (AFC division) foretells a decline in ...
  2. Flight To Quality

    The action of investors moving their capital away from riskier investments to the safest possible investment vehicles. This ...
  3. Discouraged Worker

    A person who is eligible for employment and is able to work, but is currently unemployed and has not attempted to find employment ...
  4. Ponzimonium

    After Bernard Madoff's $65 billion Ponzi scheme was revealed, many new (smaller-scale) Ponzi schemers became exposed. Ponzimonium ...
  5. Quarterly Earnings Report

    A quarterly filing made by public companies to report their performance. Included in earnings reports are items such as net ...
Trading Center