Roth IRA | Ed Slott and Company, LLC

Roth IRA

Roth IRAs and the Backdoor Roth Conversion: Today's Slott Report Mailbag

Question: Hello. I am an avid reader. Thank you for the information you provide. About opening/establishing a Roth IRA: I opened my 1st and only Roth IRA on April 12 of 2018 at the age of 59 ½, funding it with an initial deposit and designating that deposit as a 2017 deposit/contribution. In August of 2018 I made a 2nd deposit as my 2018 Roth IRA contribution. Does the 5-year rule (to withdraw earnings tax free) begin in 2017 or 2018? Does the 5-year rule start on April 12, the actual date of the Roth IRA establishment, or does the date default to January 1st regardless of the actual establishment date? Thanks again, Jeff Answer: Jeff, The start date for your Roth IRA is officially January 1, 2017.

Why You Should NOT Care about the Roth IRA Five-Year Rules

Roth IRAs first arrived over twenty years ago. A lot has changed since 1998. That was the year that Google was founded and an electronic pet called a Furby was one of the most popular Christmas gifts. However, some things haven’t changed so much. Impeachment is once again all over the news and here at the Slott Report we are still being asked many questions about how the five-year rules for Roth IRA distributions work. We probably get more questions on this topic than just about any other.

Roth Conversions and the 60-Day Rollover Rule: Today's Slott Report Mailbag

Question: Hello Ed, I have received differing views on making a 401(k) conversion to a Roth IRA. I'm a 64 year old retired federal employee and plan to transfer all my funds from the TSP to my traditional IRA. From there I plan to make annual conversions to my long established Roth IRA. Is there an issue with the five-year rule that would prevent me from being able to make withdrawals from the Roth during the next few years? Thanks for your help. Dan Answer: Hi Dan, Your plan works! You can roll over your TSP to a traditional IRA and make series of conversions to a Roth IRA without worries about taxes and penalties on any Roth distributions. How is this possible? Well, all your converted funds can be accessed tax and penalty free because you are over age 59 ½.

Roth IRA & Roth 401(k) – The Basics

Roth IRAs and Roth 401(k) plans are incredibly popular, and why wouldn’t they be? Both offer tax-free earnings and allow the account owner to pass tax-free dollars to their beneficiaries. However, despite the ubiquity of Roth accounts, there are some common misunderstandings about how Roth IRAs and Roth 401(k)s operate and interact with each other. Confusion swirls around such basic concepts as contribution limits, eligibility and Roth rollovers. For example, income limits apply to Roth IRA contributions only There are no income limits for designated Roth 401(k) plan salary deferrals. Contributions are the initial building block of Roth IRAs.

Best Thing Since Sliced Bread?

Roth IRAs are a wonderful way to save for retirement. A person can sock away $6,000 a year (plus another $1,000 if they are age 50 or older) and the earnings will grow tax free. Plus, most custodians allow Roth IRA dollars to be invested in an incredibly wide array of options – mutual funds, stocks, ETFs - a veritable smorgasbords of choices. Can’t beat that with a stick! Did I mention that Roth IRAs have no required minimum distributions at age 70 ½? (Put that in the “pro-Roth” column.) What about age restrictions on who can contribute? You’re telling me that anyone can contribute to a Roth IRA as long as they have earned income and do not exceed certain income limits?

Roth IRA Rollovers and Contributions: Today's Slott Report Mailbag

Question: I set up a Roth outside my employee retirement plan. I retired on 10-01-2018. I set up an automatic contribution to my Roth IRA from my checking account and, up to this day, still continue to contribute to the Roth IRA . Shall I opt out since I’m retired now? Your advice is deeply appreciated. Thank you very much. Sincerely, Ester Answer: Hi Ester, Contributing to a Roth IRA in addition to your employer plan is a great way to increase your retirement savings.

The Time Machine

A time machine would be cool to have. Even if it only worked on financial assets, it sure would come in handy. One might jump into the future and see if an investment paid off, or you could look around to see where the smart money succeeded. And if the original investment turned out to be a loser, you could go back in time and sell it – or never even buy it in the first place. Too bad financial time machines don’t exist. Bummer. While literal time machines have yet to be invented and we can’t quantum leap,

Commingling Inherited Assets and QCDs: Today’s Q&A Mailbag

This week's Slott Report Mailbag answers readers' questions about commingling assets and QCDs.

Tracking Roth Contributions for Those Under Age 59½

One of the benefits of a Roth IRA is that contributions can always be distributed out of the Roth IRA with no tax, and no early distribution penalty for those that are under age 59½. But, you have to be able to prove to IRS that you are taking a distribution of contributions only. Under the distribution ordering rules, all Roth IRAs are treated as one Roth account, contributions are deemed to be the first amount distributed, then conversions – first in, first out – and lastly earnings are distributed.

5 Roth IRA Facts That May Surprise You

Do you think you understand all the rules that govern your Roth IRA? Not so fast! There are many misconceptions as to how these complicated accounts work. Here are 5 Roth IRA facts that might surprise you.

Content Citation Guidelines

Below is the required verbiage that must be added to any re-branded piece from Ed Slott and Company, LLC or IRA Help, LLC. The verbiage must be used any time you take text from a piece and put it onto your own letterhead, within your newsletter, on your website, etc. Verbiage varies based on where you’re taking the content from.

Please be advised that prior to distributing re-branded content, you must send a proof to matt@irahelp.com for approval.

For white papers/other outflow pieces:
Copyright © [year of publication], [Ed Slott and Company, LLC or IRA Help, LLC - depending on what it says on the original piece] Reprinted with permission [Ed Slott and Company, LLC or IRA Help, LLC - depending on what it says on the original piece] takes no responsibility for the current accuracy of this information.

For charts:
Copyright © [year of publication], Ed Slott and Company, LLC Reprinted with permission Ed Slott and Company, LLC takes no responsibility for the current accuracy of this information.

For Slott Report articles:
Copyright © [year of article], Ed Slott and Company, LLC Reprinted from The Slott Report, [insert date of article], with permission. [Insert article URL] Ed Slott and Company, LLC takes no responsibility for the current accuracy of this article.

Please contact Matt Smith at matt@irahelp.com or (516) 536-8282 with any questions.

 

Find members of Ed Slott's Elite IRA Advisor GroupSM in your area.
We neither keep nor share your information entered on this form.
 

I agree to the terms and services:

You may review the terms and conditions here.