It typically refers to after-tax contributions made to a pre-tax retirement plan, such as a 401(k) (if your plan allows) or more commonly a traditional IRA. You don't deduct these contributions from taxable income. But handled correctly, you won't pay taxes when you withdraw the original contributions in retirement, just on the earnings (if any). This is in contrast to Roth 401(k) or Roth IRA contributions where you won't pay taxes in retirement on either the original contributions or the earnings (subject to certain requirements). Nondeductible contributions are a strategy sometimes used by folks with income above eligibility levels to make other/additional pre-tax or Roth contributions. When mixed with deductible contributions, nondeductible contributions require additional recordkeeping and care at distribution time.
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