Retirement-Rule Revisions Could Save Millions in Taxes
Wall Street Journal Online (09/28/00) Vol. 5, No. 17 p.C1; Asinof, Lynn

Ed Slott, an accountant in Rockville Centre, N.Y., and publisher of Ed Slott's IRA Advisor, says what everyone should gain from the pension legislation that is advancing in Congress is "the importance of naming a beneficiary" for their retirement plans. Essentially, the pension legislation gives people one year to designate new beneficiaries and select a new distribution method for their retirement plans. This provision could start Jan. 1, 2002. A second provision of the legislation would enable those who inherit IRAs to reset distributions according to their own life expectancies. "You must be able to document it and find that beneficiary form," says Slott. The third provision would reduce the penalty on retirement-plan owners for late distributions from 50 percent to 10 percent. Although Slott says the pension legislation gives retirement-plan holders an opportunity to fix any mistakes involving beneficiary choices or paperwork, people can expect the Internal Revenue Service to be more involved with its ever watchful eye.

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