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The Slott Report

Tax Reform Targets Your Ability to Undo Your Roth IRA Conversion

Recharacterization is currently one of the few “do-overs” allowed under the tax code. Its days may now be numbered. The tax reform legislation currently pending in Congress would do away with recharacterization at the end of 2017.

Rollovers, Spouse as the Beneficiary, and Backdoor Roth: Today’s Q&A Mailbag

This week's Slott Report Mailbag answers readers' questions about rollovers, spouse as the beneficiary, and the backdoor Roth.

Self-Directed IRAs and Prohibited Transactions

Creating a self-directed IRA is relatively straightforward. It is not a creation of the tax code, but rather stems from the investment policies of the custodian that administers the IRA account. The agreement will allow you to diversify your IRA assets across a wide range of investments that you choose. However, when investing self-directed IRA assets, it is important that you and your advisor understand the types of transactions to avoid. These transactions, called “prohibited transactions,” can lead to serious tax consequences, including the disqualification of your IRA assets.

Give the Gift of a Roth IRA for Christmas

This holiday season consider giving the gift of a big head start on lifetime financial security to the children in your family by giving them funds to contribute to Roth IRAs. There's no lower age limit on having a Roth IRA as long as a child has earned income. And an early start on saving can have a tremendous long-term payoff through the power of compound interest.

Delaying RMDs From an Employer Plan and IRA Rollovers: Today’s Q&A Mailbag

This week's Slott Report Mailbag answers reader questions about delaying RMDs from an employer plan and IRA rollovers.

The Once-Per-Year Rollover Rule – What Doesn’t Count

In 2014, the Tax Court ruled that an IRA owner could do only one, IRA-to-IRA or Roth IRA-to-Roth IRA, 60-day rollover in a 12 month period. This rule applies no matter how many IRA and/or Roth IRA accounts the IRA owner might have. The 12 months is a full 12 months, not a calendar year. The 12 month period will start with the date that IRA or Roth IRA funds are received.

RMD Quiz – How Well Do You Know the Rules?

If you have an IRA, you should realize that what goes in must come out. In other words, your tax deferral will not last forever. Eventually, Uncle Sam will want his share. When you reach retirement age, required minimum distributions (RMDs) will kick in. Are you prepared? Take our RMD quiz and see how well you understand the basic RMD rules.

The Rule of 55 – An Exception to the Early Withdrawal Rules

If you have a 401(k) account or other employer sponsored retirement plan, you probably already know that a distribution before you reach age 59½ is going to be subject to a 10% penalty. One exception to the 10% early withdrawal penalty allows participants in a qualified plan to take a distribution from the plan after leaving the job as long as they are age 55 or older. This rule, sometimes called “The Rule of 55,” is an exception to the early withdrawal rules that generally levy a 10% penalty on amounts withdrawn before age 59 ½. This exception does not apply to IRA distributions.

Roth IRAs - Favored for Annual Contributions, Neglected for Rollovers from Company Plans

Roth IRAs become 20 years old in January of 2018 and now hold more than $660 billion in retirement wealth, reports the Investment Company Institute. Yet while Roth IRAs have become very popular among individuals who make annual contributions to IRAs, they are near totally avoided by persons who roll over big-dollar distributions from company retirement plans into their IRAs, with these funds going overwhelmingly into Traditional IRAs.

Still-working Exception and RMDs: Today’s Q&A Mailbag

This week's Slott Report Mailbag looks into the still-working exception and RMDs.

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