A Roth Individual Retirement Account (Roth IRA)
A Roth IRA is a retirement savings account. It allows your money to grow tax-deferred and to withdraw it tax-free at retirement if you meet certain conditions. You contribute to a Roth IRA with after-tax dollars, meaning you’ve already paid taxes on the money you put into it. In return for no up-front tax break, your money grows tax-free. When you withdraw money from your account, it is tax-free!
What types of investment choices are available?
Working with a financial advisor may help you choose investments that best meet your financial objectives, based on your personal investment objectives and risk tolerance. You should consider the investment objectives, risks, and charges and expenses of the funds offered carefully before investing.
When can I make withdrawals from a Roth IRA?
The Roth IRA is flexible. You can withdraw your contributions (but not the earnings) without incurring a penalty so you have more access to your money. You may withdraw your Roth IRA contributions tax and penalty free for any reason. However, the distribution must be “qualified” and at least five calendar years must have passed from the first contribution in order to avoid being taxed or penalized on any investment earnings.
The qualifying distribution reasons are:
- Attainment of age 59 ½
- First-time home purchase (with a $10,000 lifetime in aggregate to all IRAs)
- Qualified higher education expenses
- Medical expenses greater than 7.5% of your adjusted gross income
- Medical insurance premiums during a period of unemployment
- Qualified Reservist distribution
No Required Minimum Distributions
Roth IRAs have no RMD requirements. With a traditional IRA, you must start making RMD withdrawals after you reach age 70 ½. While you can no longer contribute to a traditional IRA after you have turned 70 ½, you can continue to contribute to a Roth IRA regardless of your age.