I’ll be 70 1⁄2 this September. I’ll take required minimum distributions from my IRAs, 401(k)s and 403(b)s this year based on their value at the end of December 2016. I’m still employed and contributing to my employer’s 401(k). Do I include that 401(k) when calculating the amount I must withdraw?
No. Regardless of your age, you don’t have to take RMDs from your current employer’s retirement plan unless you own 5 percent or more of the company you work for. But after age 70 1⁄2, you must take them from your IRAs and from any retirement accounts you’ve kept in the plans of previous employers.
To determine a 2017 RMD, divide the retirement account’s 2016 year-end balance by your life expectancy, which is listed in the Uniform Table for Determining Lifetime Distributions in IRS Publication 590.
Anyone who owns several types of retirement account must do that calculation more than once. You combine your IRA balances to determine your IRA RMD, and combine your 403(b) balances to calculate your 403(b) RMD. But a separate RMD calculation is required for each 457 plan and each 401(k) plan. For example, if you had three IRAs, two 403(b) plans, one 457 plan and three 401(k) plans, you’d do one IRA RMD calculation, one 403(b) RMD calculation, one 457 RMD calculation, and three 401(k) RMD calculations.
The deadline for taking the first annual RMD is April 1 of the year after you turn 70 1⁄2 — in your case, April 1 2018. But you’re smart to take the first RMDs by the end of 2017. Otherwise, you’ll have to take 2017 RMDs and 2018 RMDs in the same tax year.
THE BOTTOM LINE You don’t have to take RMDs from your current employer’s retirement plan unless you own 5 percent or more of the company.
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