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 Retirement Plans Story
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J.D. and Emy are helping people see the big picture – in more ways than one.

They own and operate Special Event Production, Inc. (SEP), of Clemmons, North Carolina, which sets up and operates electronic scoreboards and video screens at nearly 200 major sports events a year, including auto races and professional golf tournaments. The company marked its 25th anniversary in 2012, and J.D. and Emy have built a thriving enterprise with a lot of repeat business.

They have 38 employees spread across the country, mostly technicians and truck drivers working in traveling teams. The median age of their employees is around 37. Like many workers around that age, they know they should save for retirement, but that’s not always easy.

J.D. and Emy set up a profit-sharing plan soon after the company opened its doors in 1987, and they later added a 401(k) plan, which they transferred to an Ohio National group variable annuity contract in 2005. Helping them make that transition was their plan adviser, Steve Golden of Golden, Mack & Associates, Inc.

The 401(k) includes an “employer match” on salary deferrals up to 10 percent, which may be considered a remarkably high percentage for such a small company. “We’ve had feedback from the employees that they think it’s a very generous plan,” Emy says. “They understand that a 10 percent match is generous, compared to most companies.”

J.D. puts it more bluntly: “It’s free money. It’s a painless way to save for your retirement.” But he adds that while the plan allows for hardship withdrawals – and has granted a few – it does not make loans. “It’s a retirement plan, not a savings account.”

While the company automatically enrolls all employees in the profit-sharing plan, and has made a contribution to the plan in 24 of its 25 years, SEP doesn’t have full employee participation in the 401(k) – but they’re working on it.

“A lot of times, it’s the younger people who don’t feel that they can afford to participate,” Emy says. “We keep trying to encourage them to do so.” And J.D. adds, “We highly believe in retirement plans, just to help ensure somebody has income after they retire. It’s a reward for employees, too.”

J.D. and Emy rely heavily on Steve for plan administration and employee education and enrollment. “Steve comes out every year to our employee meeting and goes through the program with everyone,” Emy notes. “Golden Mack does our tax return and our Form 5500 and handles all the bookkeeping and paperwork. There’s not really a whole lot that we do. Ohio National takes care of the tax withholding and government reporting, which is great.”

After some issues with their previous plan provider, J.D. and Emy moved everything over to Ohio National and immediately had more investment portfolios to choose from – plus the good service they were looking for.

“On a scale of one to 10, I’d have to say they’re a nine, at least,” J.D. says. “Between Golden Mack and Ohio National, it’s just a nice comforting feeling to have them there.” As Emy points out, “We have lots of salespeople come and ask us to change our 401(k), but we just don’t have any reason to do that.”

This testimonial may not be representative of the experience of other Ohio National policyholders and is not a guarantee or indicative of future performance or success.

Each person's individual situation and needs will vary so this type of policy may not be appropriate for everyone and readers should consult with their own financial adviser before purchasing or sending money.

Not a deposit | Not FDIC insured | Not guaranteed by any bank | May lose value | Not insured by any government agency

For Variable Annuities:
Variable Annuity Issuer:
The Ohio National Life Insurance Company

Variable Annuity Distributor:
Ohio National Equities, Inc. Member FINRA

For Variable Universal Life:
Variable Universal Life Issuer:
Ohio National Life Assurance Corporation

Registered Product Distributor:
Ohio National Equities, Inc. Member FINRA

Variable annuities are sold by prospectuses, which contain more complete information including fees, surrender charges (contingent deferred sales charges) and other cost that may apply.

To obtain current prospectuses, contact your financial professional or visit Please read the product and fund prospectuses carefully before you invest or send money. You should consider the investment objectives, strategies, risk factors, charges and expenses of the underlying variable portfolios carefully before investing. The fund prospectus contains this and other information about the underlying variable portfolios.


For variable universal life insurance: Both the return and the principal value of the underlying portfolios will fluctuate, and the portfolios may be worth more of less than their original values when redeemed. If the performance of the portfolio options is less than anticipated, the death benefit may be reduced, the policy may lapse and/or the policyholder may be required to pay premium above the planned premium to keep the policy in force.


If tax-free loans are taken and the policy lapses, a taxable event may occur. Loans and withdrawals from life insurance policies that are classified as modified endowment contracts may be subject to tax at the time that the loan or withdrawal is taken and, if taken prior to age 59½, a 10% federal tax penalty may apply. Consult your financial professional before taking a withdrawal or loan. Withdrawals and loans may reduce the death benefit and cash surrender value. In the first 19 years, surrender charges apply to withdrawals over 10% of cash surrender value as of the prior policy anniversary. Certain policy loans may result in currently taxable income and tax penalties. If you are considering the use of policy loans as retirement income, you should consult your tax adviser regarding potential tax consequences that may arise if you do not make necessary payments to keep the policy from lapsing.

For variable annuities: Early withdrawals or surrenders may be subject to surrender charges. Withdrawals are also subject to ordinary income tax and, if taken prior to age 59½, a 10% federal tax penalty may apply. For tax purposes only, withdrawals will come first from any gain in the contract. Federal and state tax laws in this area are complex and subject to change. Consult your personal tax adviser on all tax matters. Withdrawals may reduce the death benefit, cash surrender value and any living benefit amount.

Guarantees based upon the claims-paying ability of the issuer. Guarantees do not apply to the investment performance or account value of the underlying variable portfolios. As with any investment, investing in variable portfolios involves risk, including possible loss of principal. 

Variable annuities are long-term investment vehicles designed to accumulate money on a tax-deferred basis for retirement purposes. Upon retirement, variable annuities may pay out an income stream of a series of payments or a lump sum. If you die during the accumulation or payout phase, your beneficiary may be eligible to receive any remaining Contract Value.

There is no additional tax-deferral benefit for annuity contracts or life insurance policies purchased in an IRA or other tax-qualified plan because these are already afforded tax-deferred status. An annuity contract or life insurance policy should only be purchased in an IRA or qualified plan you value some of the other features of the contract or policy and are willing to incur any additional costs associated with the contract or policy.

Product, product features and rider availability vary by state. Issuers not licensed to conduct business in NY.






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©2017 Ohio National Financial Services, Inc.
Product Issuers: The Ohio National Life Insurance Company
and Ohio National Life Assurance Corporation
Registered Products Distributed by: Ohio National Equities, Inc.
Member FINRA
One Financial Way | Cincinnati, Ohio 45242