How and When to Use a Direct Rollover

Overview: 

This information is for general educational purposes only.  Individuals should consult with their financial adviser or legal counsel to determine how rollover regulations affect their unique situations.

Generally, an investor changing jobs or leaving the workforce may utilize either a Direct Rollover election to continue their retirement savings outside of their employer-sponsored retirement plan.   Assets distributed directly to your IRA from the retirement plan may qualify as a Direct Rollover.

What is a Direct Rollover?

The Direct Rollover is a tax-free distribution to you of cash or other assets from one retirement plan that you contribute to another retirement plan, including an IRA.  The contribution to the IRA is called a rollover contribution.  The Direct Rollover method transfers the assets directly from the retirement plan (and not to the IRA owner) into the investor's IRA, avoiding the 20% mandatory IRS withholding.  This option to transfer retirement assets has no age limitations.

Eligible retirement plans include:

  • Employer's qualified pension, profit -sharing, or stock bonus plan
  • Annuity plan
  • Tax sheltered annuity plan (section 403(b) plan)
  • Governmental deferred compensation plan (section 457 plan)

Who do you contact first? 

Contact your retirement plan administrator or the human resources office for eligibility and requirements.  The plan administrator is required to provide a reasonable direct method of asset transfer.   Completion of an IRA Rollover Form provided by the administrator may be required, in some cases.  In other cases, the plan accepts an IRA Rollover Form supplied by your IRA's broker.  Therefore, it is important to check with the plan administrator.

Initiating your Direct Rollover through IB 

For those transfers that require a broker-supplied IRA Rollover Form, Interactive Brokers provides a convenient IRA Rollover Form.  Interactive Brokers will forward the request to the plan administrator or broker for processing.  Funds may be transferred by either wire transfer or check directly to Interactive Brokers.

Before accepting an IRA rollover transaction into an IRA, we require that you review your eligibility for the rollover and certify your understanding of the rollover rules and conditions.  The IRA Rollover Form includes the Rollover Form and an IRA Rollover Certification Form.

The Fund Transfers page within the Account Management lets you notify IB of an IRA Rollover deposit of funds into your account.  Select the Funding tab in the header link and choose Deposit Funds in the Transaction list.   In the Method list, select Direct Rollover.  Complete, sign, and return both forms to the Interactive Brokers address on the form.

Contact Customer Service with any additional questions.

 

 

In compliance with Treasury Department Circular 230, unless stated to the contrary, any information contained in this article was not intended or written to be used and cannot be used for the purpose of avoiding tax penalties that may be imposed on any taxpayer.

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