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For Senior Taxpayers

Question: I am over age 70½. How do I determine the amount I must withdraw each year from my IRA & 401(k) accounts to avoid a penalty?


Generally, you can calculate the required minimum distribution (RMD) for each account by dividing the prior December 31 balance of that IRA or retirement plan account by a life expectancy factor that the IRS publishes in Tables in Publication 590-B (.pdf), Distributions from Individual Retirement Arrangements (IRAs). Use:

  • The Uniform Lifetime Table (Table III) if you are an unmarried owner, an owner whose spouse is not the sole beneficiary, or an owner whose spouse is not more than 10 years younger;
  • The Joint and Last Survivor Table (Table II) if you are a married owner whose spouse is both more than 10 years younger and the sole beneficiary of the account; and
  • The Single Life Expectancy Table (Table I) if you are a beneficiary of an account.

You can use Worksheet 1-1. Figuring the Taxable Part of Your IRA Distribution, in Publication 590-B.

For more information, see Publication 590-B for RMD on IRAs and Publication 575, Pension and Annuity Income, for RMD on 401(k) plans.

Category: Other (Alternative Minimum Tax, Estates, Trusts, Tax Shelters, State Tax Inquiries)
Subcategory: For Senior Taxpayers

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The OMB number for this study is 1545-1432.
If you have any comments regarding this study, please write to:
IRS, Tax Products Coordinating Committee
1111 Constitution Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20224