private letter ruling

“Estate Bypass” – Spousal Rollover When the Estate is Beneficiary

An estate can become the beneficiary of a person’s IRA in a couple of ways. First, the estate could be named outright as the beneficiary on the beneficiary form. This is not recommended. Why? One reason is that a non-designated beneficiary (like an estate), must follow certain restrictive payout rules.

Sidestepping the New IRS Private Letter Ruling Fees

Like most everything else these days, the price for receiving an IRS private letter ruling (PLR) has recently gone up. A person will request a PLR to receive the IRS’s blessing that a specific tax transaction won’t violate the tax code or IRS regulations. A PLR is specific to the particular tax situation of the person requesting it. This means that PLRs shouldn’t be relied on by anyone other than that person.

Think Twice Before Using Your IRA For Quick Cash

If you or a family member encounter financial trouble, you may think that your IRA is a good resource to get you through the crisis. Be careful! While some company plans allow for loans, loans are not allowed from an IRA. To get around this rule, some taxpayers take IRA distributions to get quick cash and figure they will have resources to roll over the distributed amount within 60 days. This can be a dangerous plan as one IRA owner found out in a recent Private Letter Ruling (PLR).

More on the Upcoming IRA Private Letter Ruling Fee Increases

What kind of nightmarish world would we be living in where prices would go up 2,000% overnight? A world where gas today is $1.50 per gallon, but tomorrow it will cost you $30 for the same gallon. Thankfully, such increases are all but unheard of in the real world. At least that’s the case most of the time. Effective February 1, 2016, the IRS is raising the cost of some IRA (and other retirement account) related private letter rulings (PLRs) by as much as 2,000%... overnight! Here’s the deal.

Why Double Check Your Retirement Transactions?

Check, double check, and then, maybe, check again. When you are moving retirement funds, make sure they are going to the right account. We have heard so many horror stories through the years. Here's just a few "do-not-do-this" examples.

The Deceased Don’t Make Good IRA Beneficiaries

Almost all IRA owners named their IRA beneficiary when they first opened the account. In many cases, it was their spouse or parent. However, disaster can strike if that primary beneficiary dies before you do and you don't update the IRA beneficiary form. This horror story provides a valuable lesson.

IRA Private Letter Ruling Fees for 2015

Private letter ruling (PLR) requests for IRAs are a means for taxpayers to request forgiveness from IRS and to allow them to complete an action that has, for some reason, been derailed. For instance, you can ask IRS to allow you to complete a Roth recharacterization after the deadline has passed or to allow you to complete a 60-day rollover after the 60 days have passed. This all comes with a substantial cost. Here are the facts and figures for 2015.

Be Diligent When Your Employer Terminates Your Company’s Retirement Plan

A recent IRS private letter ruling (PLR) showcased what can happen when a company retirement plan is terminated, and a common mistake that can occur when paying out those funds to employees or ex-employees. When a company retirement plan such as a 401(k) plan is terminated, the company has to go through a lot of formal steps to terminate it beyond simply deciding to discontinue the plan. These steps as well as what you can do to take action are detailed below.

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