This excerpt taken from the ALL DEF 14A filed Apr 2, 2007.
NON-QUALIFIED DEFERRED COMPENSATION AT FISCAL YEAR-END 2006
In order to remain competitive with other employers, we allow employees, including the named executives, whose annual compensation exceeds the amount specified in the Internal Revenue Code (e.g., $220,000 in 2006), to defer up to 80% of their salary and/or up to 100% of their annual cash incentive award that exceeds that amount under The Allstate Corporation Deferred Compensation Plan (Deferred Compensation Plan). Allstate does not match participant deferrals and does not guarantee a stated rate of return.
Deferrals under the Deferred Compensation Plan are credited with earnings, or are subject to losses, based on the results of the investment option or options selected by the participants. The investment options available under the Deferred Compensation Plan are Stable Value, S&P 500, International Equity, Russell 2000 and Bond Fundsoptions currently available under our 401(k) plan. Under the Deferred Compensation Plan, deferrals are not actually invested in these funds, but instead are credited with earnings or losses based on the funds' investment experience, which are net of administration and investment expenses. Because the rate of return is based on actual investment measures in our 401(k) plan, no above-market earnings are paid. Similar to our 401(k) plan, participants can change their investment elections daily by accessing a secure website or contacting our benefits center. Investment changes are effective the next business day. The Deferred Compensation Plan is unfunded; participants have only the rights of our general unsecured creditors.
Deferrals under the Deferred Compensation Plan are segregated into pre-2005 balances and post-2004 balances. A named executive may elect to begin receiving a distribution of his pre-2005 balance upon separation from service or in one of the first through fifth years after separation from service. In either event, the named executive may elect to receive payment of his pre-2005 balance in a lump sum or in annual cash installment payments over a period of from two to ten years. An irrevocable distribution election is required before making any post-2004 deferrals into the plan. The distribution options available to the post-2004 balances are similar to those available to the pre-2005 balances, except the earliest distribution date is six months following separation from service. Upon a showing of unforeseeable emergency, a plan participant may be allowed to access funds in his deferred compensation account earlier than the dates specified above.