And we can help you dig into this bevy of Google employee benefits so you and your family can enjoy the perks, plan for your future and meet your financial goals. It’s what we do.
We know it seems complicated. That’s why we work with Google employees like you to help build a successful plan that pays for itself many times over. We’ll offer some details below.
Your job keeps you busy. You might not have time to track your Google employee benefits and stock options—and if you’re not an expert on financial planning, you’re likely leaving a lot of money on the table. We’re here to help.
A GSU is a Google stock option that entitles you to Alphabet Inc. capital stock. One GSU equals one share of Google stock; however, your certificate isn’t worth anything until your GSUs vest, which occurs according to Google’s stock vesting schedule.
You pay taxes upon vesting based on the current fair market value (FMV) of your shares. Google automatically withholds 22% of the vested amount for your taxes. This may not cover your entire tax liability.
You pay ordinary income tax (short-term tax rate) on the difference between FMV when you received the share versus when you sell it at vesting ($2,000/share in the example below).
If you wait to sell, your GSUs may go up in price (here to $10,000/share), but you pay long-term capital gains taxes on the profit, which is a lower tax rate.
Tip: Google stock options provide a significant opportunity for wealth building, but they are a potential tax disaster if managed poorly.
Tip: If you’re married, think about consolidating your retirement savings to maximize your Google match. Your partner can instead direct equal money toward your shared day-to-day or monthly spending.
Google is an industry leader when it comes to matching contributions to your 401(k). Don’t leave that free money on the table.
Google matches 100% on the first $3,000 you contribute to your 401(k). After that, they provide a 50% match on your contributions up to $19,000.
That’s thousands of extra dollars each year going into your 401(k) to compound with no tax liability until you reach retirement age.
Google offers immediate vesting of its contribution to your 401(k)—you retain the full amount even if you leave the company.
And then there’s the “mega Roth” option…
This option lets you contribute nearly five times the annual limit of a traditional Roth IRA—that’s a powerful way to start a tax-free nest egg.
Your contributions to a traditional 401(k) are pre-tax up to $20,500 ($27,000 if you’re age 50-plus). With Google’s “mega backdoor” Roth option, you can add after-tax contributions up to $40,500, including what the company matches—then roll that excess amount into a Roth IRA, where your assets can grow and be withdrawn tax-free.
Tip: This investment tool allows after-tax contributions to your 401(k) account to make up the difference between your 401(k) contributions, Google’s 401(k) match and the IRS’ annual contribution limit.
Vice President, Portfolio Executive
Years of expertise working with Google employees on compensation and benefits
CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™
Chartered Retirement Planning Counselor®
Accredited Wealth Management Advisor®
Specialist in executive compensation and stock options
Equity Compensation Associate designee
Polaris Wealth Advisory Group and Adviser Investments are now under one new brand, RWA Wealth Partners.
Over the next few months, we are transitioning to a new website under our new brand. For you, this means a better experience and more access to valuable education, insights and advice. It also means you gain access to expanded wealth management solutions such as tax¹ and legal services², alternative investments and more. Explore this site for additional information on these new services and call your advisor with any questions at 833-RWA-PLAN.
¹Personalized tax advice and tax return preparation is available through a separate, written engagement agreement with RWA Tax Solutions, LLC.
²Legal services can be obtained through a separate, written engagement via our relationship with Hall & Diana, LLC