Ed Slott’s Elite Advisor Group℠ Meets in Indiana

By Andy Ives, CFP®, AIF®
IRA Analyst
Follow Us on X: @theslottreport

Ed Slott’s Elite IRA Advisor Group℠ gathered in Indianapolis last week for another successful conference. Over 350 member advisors from across the country spent two intense days of training, covering topics ranging from SECURE 2.0 provisions taking effect in 2024 to fixing excess contributions. The overarching theme of the seminar was “schemes and scams.” Guest speakers discussed different types of scams and what to watch out for. Attending advisors shared real-life stories of how their clients have been targeted and what hurdles had to be overcome to protect accounts. Here we discuss some of the topics of conversation from the conference.

From a recent article on the “Checkpoint” tax service, “An estimated $10 billion from 2.6 million fraud incidents was lost in 2023…but the [Federal Trade Commission] estimates actual losses are as high as $48 billion.”

In the “Identifying Schemes and Scams” portion of the program, we covered seven red flags along with specific situations where the red flag scams resulted in prohibited transactions and significant penalties. These “red flags” included such things as: using multiple entities to conceal illegal transactions within an IRA; making unrealistic claims; and using legal tax breaks to make an investment opportunity sound legitimate. The ultimate point of this section of the program was to emphasize the old adage: “If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.” In fact, a quote included in the training manual reads as follows:

“There is no secret trick that can eliminate a person’s tax obligations. People should be wary of anyone peddling any of these scams.” – [Former] IRS Commissioner Douglas Shulman, “IRS Issues Dirty Dozen List of Tax Scams”

Apart from the schemes and scams, we also covered the different provisions of SECURE 2.0 that came on-line in 2024. (SECURE 2.0 included 92 sections with staggered effective dates.) Some of the rules include three new ways to potentially access retirement dollars while avoiding the 10% early distribution penalty (Emergency expenses, domestic abuse, and “in-plan emergency savings accounts”). 529-to-Roth IRA rollovers were discussed, as was the ability to exempt Roth plan dollars – like in a 401(k) – from the lifetime required minimum distribution calculation.

One of the more focused parts of the conference had to do with Roth SEP and Roth SIMPLE contributions. Roth contributions to both types of plans were technically available in 2023, as per SECURE 2.0. However, actual implementation proved difficult. For example, how are Roth SEP contributions reported? Since custodians needed further guidance from the IRS on how to handle such contributions before they could proceed, the new Roth options were simply not offered. That guidance arrived in the form of IRS Notice 2024-2, which we have written about in the past here in the Slott Report. We now know the answer to the above question: Roth SEP contributions are reported on a 1099-R using code 2 or 7 in box 7.

The Ed Slott’s Elite IRA Advisor Group℠ training programs are always jam-packed with important information, intense conversation, networking opportunities and entertainment. Indianapolis proved to be no different. Another successful conference is in the books, and our member advisors fanned back out across the country armed with new information to help guide and protect their clients.

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