Is the 10% Penalty on Early Withdrawal Waiver For 2022?
Financial advisers typically warn those withdrawing funds from retirement accounts such as IRAs and 401(k) plans before age 59 1/2 can expect a 10% penalty, in addition to regular income taxes, in some instances. But the CARES Act and SECURE 2.0 waive that penalty in certain circumstances.
Under these circumstances, hardship withdrawals for immediate financial needs such as immediate housing costs or higher education expenses and buying your first home may be necessary. Terminal illness and disability may also warrant withdrawal.
Unreimbursed Medical Expenses
Retirement savings plans, such as 401(k)s, are designed to help people prepare for retirement by saving for it now, so tax laws usually punish early withdrawal from these accounts prior to reaching age 59 1/2. But in certain situations, early access may be permitted without incurring a penalty fee.
For 2023, the IRS offers you the ability to deduct unreimbursed medical expenses that exceed 7.5% of your adjusted gross income (AGI). This deduction applies only for those who itemize their deductions on Schedule A as opposed to taking the standard deduction. Eligible expenses include preventive care, treatments and surgeries; dental and vision care; visits to psychologists/psychiatrists; prescription medications; appliances like glasses contacts false teeth as well as transportation costs necessary to reach medical appointments.
IRS considers health-related expenses essential needs. Therefore, if you have substantial bills due to a health condition that require payment from retirement funds, taking some out may make sense – however this will still count as withdrawal and be taxed accordingly.
Divorce or Separation
Tax regulations surrounding retirement accounts can be complicated, but one key consideration to keep in mind is whether or not you and your spouse are legally separated. Legal separation requires living separately with written agreements in place regarding decisions made during that time apart, which if later decided upon becomes part of any divorce settlement. A legal separation can also alter your filing status (married or single) for that tax year and affect eligibility for credits or deductions that might otherwise apply.
Trial separations typically last only for a limited period of time in the hopes that both partners can reconcile and resume their marriage, during which all assets and debts are considered marital property. A permanent separation occurs when neither party believes there is any chance of reconciliation; during this time they should update their beneficiaries to reflect their new circumstances.
Death of a Beneficiary
Death can have an immediate impact on withdrawals from tax-advantaged accounts, forcing beneficiaries to clear them within five or ten years (depending on when their predecessor passed) of his or her death or face incurring an extra 10% penalty in addition to income taxes.
However, certain exceptions do apply for withdrawals of an IRA and/or 401(k), such as terminal illness, unreimbursed medical expenses and separation after age 55 from employment that has an employer plan in effect at that job that one is leaving. Furthermore, if an inherited IRA is rolled over into one owned by one’s surviving spouse’s IRA then regular rules regarding early withdrawal apply as well as potential penalties that could arise due to early withdrawals.
Life-altering events should always be kept in mind and beneficiaries updated as necessary to ensure the appropriate person receives your assets and policies. If in doubt, consult a financial professional who will guide you through options to make sure your intentions are carried out exactly as planned.
Coronavirus distributions qualify as eligible hardship withdrawals and do not trigger the 10% penalty tax under the CARES Act. Furthermore, mandatory withholding will be waived until December 2020 for coronavirus-related distributions made prior to December. Furthermore, reinvested into an IRA or workplace retirement plan within three years may qualify as tax-free rollover. For advice regarding handling these kinds of distributions properly it’s wise to meet with a TIAA financial consultant and discuss both short and long term goals before making a decision about their handling it’s wise to meet with one.
CARES Act relief also makes it easier for participants to access their savings in IRAs and workplace retirement plans, making withdrawals without penalty more accessible for those affected by pandemic. Qualified coronavirus-related distributions must be reported on an individual federal income tax return for 2020, and income can be spread out ratably over three years if selected.
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