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Is Your IRA Protected From Creditors? You May Be Surprised

If you are like many Americans, your IRA may be one of your biggest assets. You may be surprised to discover that this important part of your retirement savings plan may be more vulnerable than you might think. Here is what you need to know about protection of your IRA in bankruptcy and beyond.

5 Retirement Account Creditor Protection Myths ... And What Facts REALLY Are

The creditor protection rules that apply to retirement accounts are complex and frequently misunderstood. In an effort to correct some of the most frequently misunderstood concepts and provide some clarity in these seemingly murky waters, below we explore 5 Retirement Account Creditor Protection Myths and then give you the real facts behind them.

Supreme Court: Inherited IRAs are NOT Retirement Accounts ... and What This Means For You

In a landmark decision last Thursday, the Supreme Court ruled unanimously, 9-0, that inherited IRAs are not protected in bankruptcy under federal law. The decision has far reaching ramifications and, depending on your heirs' specific circumstances, may give you pause as to who — or what — is the best beneficiary for your retirement accounts. Click to learn more about this ruling and how it may affect you.

3 Things You Didn't Know About IRA Prohibited Transactions

Prohibited transactions are a list of things that you cannot do with your retirement account. In fact, they are one of the worst things you can do with a retirement account. When a prohibited transaction occurs, your entire IRA is deemed distributed as of January 1 of the year you made the prohibited transaction. This can lead to any number of negative consequences, the least of which include massive taxation and penalties. Since the prohibited transaction rules are so important, the basic information can be readily found in IRS publications and other places on the web, but here are 3 things most people don’t know about them.

Wall Street Journal: Are Inherited IRAs Protected in Bankruptcy?

An individual inherited an IRA and later went bankrupt. This is becoming more and more common as more beneficiaries are inheriting IRAs and blowing the money! Now the question becomes, "Are inherited IRAs protected in bankruptcy?"

When You Should Leave Your Employer Retirement Plan Money In The Plan

When you are entitled to receive withdrawals from your employer's retirement plan, such as a 401(k), a rollover to an IRA is a smart move in most cases. But there are some times when it’s best to leave the money in the employer plan and NOT do a rollover to an IRA. We detail those scenarios below.

IRA Bankruptcy Exemption Amount Increases

As of April 1, 2013, the maximum bankruptcy exemption amount for IRAs increased from $1,171,650 to $1,245,475. This exemption amount is subject to cost-of-living adjustments (COLAs). Since most Americans don’t have IRA balances anywhere near $1 million, the IRAs of almost everyone will be fully protected from their creditors if they declare bankruptcy.

Using the Internet as Your Financial Planner

The Internet is a great thing. You can probably find any piece of information you want somewhere out there. It is only a matter of asking the right question. My mother thinks I look everything up on the Internet. However, along with great information available on the worldwide web, there is a lot of misinformation. Some things are just plain wrong and some are very misleading. The Internet is no substitute for expert financial and retirement planning advice - as a recent bankruptcy court case proves.

Slott Report Mailbag: Can I Roll a Non-Governmental 457(b) Plan to an IRA?

This week's Slott Report Mailbag comes to you live from the Arizona Biltmore Resort and Spa and our Fall 2012 Master Elite and Elite IRA Advisor Group Workshop. We answer questions about rolling before-tax and/or after-tax money to an IRA, non-governmental 457(b) plans and rolling money to an IRA during bankruptcy.

Inherited IRAs and Bankruptcy

The area of creditor protection and inherited IRAs has been a murky one. On one hand, IRAs are intended to provide for the account owner in his or her retirement not for the retirement of their children. On the other hand, the Tax Code allows inherited IRAs to remain tax deferred (when certain conditions are met) until distributions are taken from the account.

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