Who's Making I.R.A.'s Retiree-Friendly? The I.R.S. New York Times (01/21/01) Vol. 105, No. 4 p.C10; Rosen, Jan M.
In a sign that it is softening its image, the Internal Revenue
Service (IRS) has relaxed rules governing withdrawals from IRAs and
other retirement accounts. The move is part of an agency-wide effort to
change the public's perception of it. Most financial advisers agree
that the sweeping changes are possibly the most significant tax change
Americans have seen in 10 years. One notable adjustment is seen in the
life-expectancy tables governing required minimum distributions, which
have been extended. The modification allows people to leave more money
in their accounts to grow tax-deferred for later years or for their
heirs. The rule change does not, however, influence the uniform table
in the area of joint life expectancy, which as before can be even longer
if a spouse who is the beneficiary is more than 10 years younger than
the account holder.