The Slott Report | Ed Slott and Company, LLC

The Slott Report

Exceptions to the 10% Early Distribution Penalty for IRAs

IRAs are supposed to be for saving for retirement but in challenging economic times like these many individuals may be forced to take distributions before retirement age. Be careful! If you tap your IRA before reaching age 59 ½, the bad news is that you run the risk of being hit with the 10% early distribution penalty. The good news is that there are some exceptions to this penalty. You IRA distribution will still most likely be fully taxable, but you can spare yourself the additional 10% penalty if one of these exceptions apply to you.

Six Months of Crazy – A Summary of Recent Retirement Events

After a six-month sprint through a diabolical obstacle course of new laws, a pandemic, record unemployment, deaths, confusion and complete disruption of everyone’s professional and personal lives, this seems like a good time to recap the madness of the pr

CARES ACT COVID-19 DISTRIBUTIONS AND SECURE ACT BENEFICIARY PAYOUTS: TODAY’S SLOTT REPORT MAILBAG

Question: Hi Ed, If a person takes that 100k distribution, can they elect to split evenly in 2020-2022 as income? Or can they determine how to apply the income? Shannon Answer: Hi Shannon, Those persons who qualify for up to $100,000 of 2020 coronavirus-related distribution (not everyone does) can spread out income evenly over their 2020-2022 tax returns.

IRS Extends Rollover Deadline for 2020 RMDs

The IRS has extended the rollover deadline for required minimum distributions (RMDs) taken from IRAs or company plans in 2020. In Notice 2020-51, released on June 23, the IRS said that any unwanted 2020 RMDs can be repaid via rollover to an IRA or company plan by August 31, 2020. Normally, RMDs cannot be rolled over. However, the CARES Act waived 2020 RMDs (and first-time 2019 RMDs delayed until 2020) from IRAs and defined contribution plans. For this reason, amounts received in 2020 that would have been RMDs are eligible for rollover since they are technically not RMDs.

NEW SEC REG BI APPLIES TO ROLLOVER RECOMMENDATIONS - Are You Ready?

Are you acting in your clients’ best interest when it comes to rollovers? On June 30, the new SEC Regulation Best Interest (Reg BI) becomes effective. Reg BI establishes a “best interest” standard of conduct for broker-dealers when they make recommendations to clients of any securities transaction or investment strategy involving securities. Reg BI specifically covers proposals for rolling over funds from a workplace retirement plan account to an IRA. Under the new standard, brokers must “exercise reasonable diligence, care and skill when making a recommendation to the client.” This requires the financial professional to understand the risks and rewards of the recommendation, as well as its costs, for each client.

IRS Expands Eligibility for Coronavirus-Related Distributions

On June 19, the IRS released additional guidance on coronavirus-related distributions (CRDs) from retirement accounts. The new guidance will make many more individuals eligible for these tax-advantaged distributions allowed under the CARES Act. What Is a CRD? If you qualify as an “affected individual”, you can take up to $100,000 of distributions from your IRAs and employer plans in 2020. There is no 10% early distribution penalty if you are under age 59 ½, and you have an option to spread the federal tax on CRDs evenly over a three-year period beginning with the year 2020. You also have a three-year period to repay CRDs to an IRA or employer plan. Taxes can be refunded on the amounts repaid. Repayment does not have to be made to the same IRA or company plan from which the CRD was originally paid.

60-Day Rollovers: Today's Slott Report Mailbag

Question: Thank you for all the great resources you provide. I have been looking for an answer to my specific situation and have not been able to find a clear answer to what I think is a pretty straight forward situation/fact pattern. I take my RMDs spread over a monthly basis on the 6th of each month. (I have taken four in 2020 - Jan, Feb, Mar, Apr). Under the new legislation that extends the "60-day rollover window" for distributions taken on or after February 1, 2020 to July 15, 2020, am I able to roll back all three distributions (Feb, Mar and Apr) in one contribution (rollover) into my IRA, or am I limited to only being able to roll back one month's worth of distributions? Thanks for your help and all you do. Dale

FIX/NO FIX – Correcting Retirement Transactions, and Those That are Lost

FIX: Rolling Over the Tax Withheld on a Distribution. Was the mandatory tax of 20% withheld on your work plan withdrawal even though you intended to roll over the entire account? Did you change your mind on an IRA withdrawal and now want to roll it back, but you elected to have taxes withheld on the initial distribution? If money was withheld for taxes on a distribution from a work plan or an IRA and you want to roll over the distribution plus taxes withheld, you can make up the difference “out-of-pocket.” The money withheld and sent to the IRS is gone, but you can replace that withholding with other dollars, roll over the full amount, and have a credit waiting for you for the amount withheld when you do your taxes next year.

IRS Allows Remote Witnessing of Spousal Waivers

In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, the IRS has temporarily relaxed the rule that spousal consent to certain retirement plan distributions and loans must be witnessed personally by a notary public or a plan representative. In Notice 2020-42, issued June 3, 2020, the IRS says that remote witnessing can be used for 2020 spousal waivers. This issue arises most frequently when a married participant in a private-sector defined benefit plan or money purchase pension plan elects a lump sum distribution (including a coronavirus-related distribution under the CARES Act) or a plan loan. The plan is not allowed to pay the lump sum or make the loan unless the participant’s spouse gives written consent. [This spousal consent rule does not apply to most 401(k) or 403(b) plans or any governmental or church-sponsored plans.] IRS rules require that spousal consent must be witnessed in the physical presence of a notary public or a plan representative.

Special Needs Trusts and CRDs: Today's Slott Report Mailbag

Question: Under the SECURE Act, if we can assume a Special Needs Trust can qualify for the stretch via the disabled beneficiary, what happens when the special needs trust beneficiary passes? The next named beneficiary (remainder) is a brother and/or nephew under this trust. Yet it's already an inherited IRA. Would that formula continue to the next remainder beneficiary in line, i.e., would the stretch continue? Answer: The SECURE Act left many questions unanswered, especially when it comes to trust beneficiaries, but your situation may have an answer. You are correct that, under the new law, there are special rules for a trust for disabled or chronically ill beneficiaries that allow RMDs to be paid from the IRA to the trust using the beneficiary’s life expectancy.
 

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