By Sarah Brenner, JD
Director of Retirement Education
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Hello and thank you for all the great, helpful information you continue to send out.
I am due to take my first RMD (required minimum distribution) in 2024 which would make my required beginning date April 1, 2025 if I understand correctly. My intention is to empty my traditional IRA next year and convert it to my existing Roth. My question is, if my traditional IRA shows a zero balance by my required beginning date, would that still require a RMD be taken for 2024? I’d like to know if I can convert the entire account or if I have to take an RMD and then convert the rest. I think the answer is I would have to take an RMD, but am not 100% sure.
Thanks so much,
Your thinking is correct. You must take an RMD for 2024 before you can convert. The rules say that the first money out of your IRA in a year for which you must take an RMD is considered your RMD. An RMD cannot be converted. This is true even for the first RMD year when a conversion is done before your required beginning date.
Do I need to take RMD from my Roth 401(k)?
While you do not have to take RMDs during your lifetime from a Roth IRA, the rules have always required you to take RMDs from your Roth 401(k). This remains true for 2023. However, beginning in 2024, SECURE 2.0 does away with this requirement. Starting next year, you will not need to take RMDs during your lifetime from your Roth 401(k).