Another retirement savings solution on the table for gig economy workers are open “Multiple Employer” plans, in which a single 401(k) plan is sponsored by multiple employers. (Picture a worker who drives for three different ride-sharing companies, and has a percentage of his or her earnings subtracted from each one and then funneled into a single retirement account).
These plans could be sponsored by states as well as a cohort of gig economy companies, said John of the Brookings Institution.
In addition, some of the states that are working on state-sponsored retirement plans, like Oregon, plan to offer the accounts to independent contractors in the near future, he said.
Digital apps are also moving into the void. Lyft offers a service to its drivers called Honest Dollar, and Uber offers a retirement savings option to drivers in some cities through Betterment. Both apps are voluntary, investing platforms.
In Casper, Wyoming, certified public accountant Vikki Nunn is working on a solution for her clients, many of whom have lost their jobs as the coal industry declines there. Those clients are often brought back by the companies they worked for as consultants.